ESRC Knowledge Exchange Opportunities scheme

The scheme provides the opportunity to apply for funding for knowledge exchange activities at any stage of the research lifecycle, and is aimed at maximising the impact of social science research outside academia.

The flexibility built into the scheme is intended to encourage applicants to think creatively about knowledge exchange, and applications are welcomed for either a single activity or a combination of activities; be it setting up a network to help inform the development of a research proposal, arranging an academic placement with a voluntary or business organisation, or developing tools such as podcasts and videos aimed at communicating the results of research to the general public, or developing existing research to make it more applicable to policy or practice.

Important changes to the Knowledge Exchange Opportunities scheme

Following comments from the community on the difficulty of securing cash contributions from user stakeholders, we have changed the scheme’s co-funding requirement so that partner contributions can now consist of any combination of cash or in-kind resources. The scheme has also been broadened to allow applications for new applied research, provided this is user-led or in collaboration with a user partner. Further details regarding these changes are outlined in the guidance documents below.

The call opened on 20 August 2012 and closes at 16.00 on 2 October 2012.

Call documents, including the scheme guidance are provided below:

Fellowship opportunities

Within this round of the Knowledge Exchange Opportunities scheme there is also the opportunity to apply for two prespecified placement fellowship projects. The first placement is with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and the Environment Agency, and the second placement is with the Office for National Statistics (ONS). The specification for each placement, including details of how to apply, can be found below:

ESRC aim to inform applicants of a decision on all applications within 26 weeks of the closing date for the call. Funding decisions will then be advertised on this website.

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application. Please direct any enquiries to RKE Ops in the first instance. Alternatively, contact ESRC at

Future calls

  • 3 December 2012 – 7 February 2013
  • 3 April 2013 – 6 June 2013
  • 5 August 2013 – 3 October 2013