Royal Academy of Engineering – Visit to the Funder

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On 2 November 2015, I attended a ‘Study Tour’ at the Royal Academy of Engineering, organised by ARMA (Association of Research Managers & Administrators).

During the Study Tour, I was welcomed into the funder’s stronghold, met the Programme Managers and spoke with the Head of Research & University Programmes. All mysteries regarding their Programmes/grants, call rules and peer review processes were slowly revealed.

The Programmes that were detailed on the day were:

  1. Ingenious – Public Engagement Awards Scheme;
  2. Research & University Programmes:
  • Research Chairs / Senior Research Fellowships – the funder’s flagship programme;
  • Newton Research Collaboration Programme – travel/network grant;
  • Research Fellowships
  • Distinguishing Visiting Fellowships – funding for overseas Fellow to visit UK institution;
  • Industrial Secondments;
  • Visiting Professors;
  • Engineering Leadership Advanced Awards;
  1. The Enterprise Hub – connecting HEIs, investors, Hub members and the corporate sector:
  • Launchpad Competition;
  • RAEng-ERA Foundation Award;
  • Enterprise Fellowships;
  • Pathways to Growth;
  • Growth Phase Silver Medal & MacRobert Award.

The day’s presentations are attached here.

Besides for the highlights on the above Programmes, there are also key points about peer review/evaluation processes for different Programmes, common mistakes by applicants and the funder’s online grants application system.

An important message was that because the funder is a ‘small’ organisation compared with the Research Councils and other major charities, awareness of its funding activities is relatively low. The funder noted that across the range of its Programmes, it received comparatively low numbers of applications and hence, success rates for applicants could be quite high. For those Programmes where it received a larger proportion of applications, the funder observed that they received applications from the same HEIs every year and it was keen to receive applications from a broader cross-section of the HE sector.

In short, that encouragement together with the fact that the funder holds a broad and loose definition of ‘engineering’ means that all relevant academics in BU should seriously consider applying!

Their website is found at:

If you are interested in submitting to any of the calls by this funder, you must contact your  RKEO Funding Development Officer with adequate notice before the deadline. We look forward to hearing from you!

If you have any problems accessing the funder’s presentation slides, please email me at