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Our research is supported by a variety of national and international industry and research funding bodies; we welcome collaborative enterprises as well as independent visiting scholars.

Facilities in Portaferry are used by resident staff and students as well as associated university researchers and external visitors. We are happy to help all users who can benefit from our facilities for research and teaching in marine science.

Our facilities include field-based teaching space, meeting facilities, modern laboratories, small boats, professional scientific diving, indoor and outdoor aquarium facilities with running seawater, mesocosms for highly replicated experimental ecology, and the engineering wave basin facility.

Strangford Lough is a national Marine Nature Reserve. Fieldwork and collection of scientific specimens are permitted under annual permits from the NI Department of the Environment to QML; no further permits are usually required for approved visiting researchers. However, any work involving vertebrate organisms requires license from the UK Home Office to the individual researcher.

QML Facilities rates 2015/16 [pdf]

G & M Williams Fund

This fund was established in 1977 by a gift of £15,000 from the estate of George and Mollie Williams to commemorate their long association with the Queen's University, Belfast, and, in particular, their involvement in the foundation of Queen’s Marine Laboratory at Portaferry (QML).

The award has historically been used to support summer student bursaries. From 2013 the use of the fund will shift focus to promote use of QML facilities by visiting external researchers, including PhD students, new researchers and established academics.

Awards of up to £3000 may be made in a year. Given the size of the award, it is expected that the award will provide only partial funding for international visitors. Funds may be used to cover travel and accommodation and/or lab costs. Lab costs include boat, ground transportation, and diving costs, and laboratory and aquarium consumables. Bench fees are waived for all recipients; the relevant bench fees will be added to the value of the award. (Additional awards of bench-fees only may also be granted.)

The Fund is an annual award that supports visiting researchers and students to QML. Awards up to £3000 may be made each year for of travel support, bursaries to support students or faculty on sabbatical, lab and fieldwork costs. For information please contact the Lab Director.

Other funding opportunities for international visitors are available from

Fulbright awards, opportunities for US citizens

Royal Society, International Exchanges scheme and postdoctoral funding

Ireland-Canada University Fund, travel awards for residents of Canada


Contact Information

Queen's University Marine Laboratory (QML)
12-13 The Strand, Portaferry
Co. Down, Northern Ireland, BT22 1PF
Phone: +44 (0)28 427 28230

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