Posts By / Jo Garrad

ISRF Mid-Career Research Fellowship Call announced

The Independent Social Research Foundation (ISRF) wishes to support independent-minded researchers to do interdisciplinary work which is unlikely to be funded by existing funding bodies. It is interested in original research ideas which take new approaches, and suggest new solutions, to real world social problems.

The Foundation intends to make a small number of awards to support original interdisciplinary research, across the range of the social sciences, to be held from a start date during the academic year 2013-4. Scholars from within Europe are eligible to apply.

The award is intended to enable a scholar at the mid career stage to pursue his/her research full-time, normally for 12 months. The amount will be offered to buy out the costs of replacing all teaching and associated administration in the applicant’s home institution, and will be considered to a maximum of £60,000 per successful applicant. Within that sum, reasonable support for research expenses may be considered on a matched-funding basis with the host institution.

The applicant should normally hold a salaried position at an institution of higher education and research, and be 10 years or more from the year of their PhD award. However, a shorter time from PhD award may exceptionally be considered, if the candidate has other qualifications to be considered as mid-career.

Applicants should consult the Criteria as set out in the Further Particulars and show that they meet them. Applicants should follow the Application procedure and should present their Proposal in the format specified there.

Closing date for applications is 4pm on June 21st 2012.

Application Queries: Telephone +44 (0) 20 7262 0196 or email

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

New user friendly ESRC Research Funding Guide

A new version of the ESRC Research Funding Guide is now available to download on their web site.

It has been thoroughly reviewed and substantial changes made to the layout and content.  The contents page now includes hyperlinks so that you do not need to scroll through the document to find what you need; relevant links to current Funding Opportunities and assessment information are included; as are guidance in chronological order from beginning to end of the grants process; annexes have been removed and where appropriate the information is now included within the document; and a revision to the OJEU threshold has also been included.

The new streamlined version is much more user friendly and easier to keep up to date. This document will now only be updated on a bi-annual basis – in April and October – where changes are required (unless exceptional circumstances require immediate revision). Where possible amendments will be implemented at the point at which the guide is updated. Any changes which occur during the interim period will be captured as amendments on the web page so that they are easy to find and will be communicated as appropriate (this may be via RCUK or the normal ESRC channels).

NERC announce first round of the 2012/13 Follow-on Fund

Applications are invited to NERC’s first round of the 2012/13 Follow-on Fund.

The aim of this scheme is to develop outcomes from previous funding to a stage where commercial opportunities are possible.  The fund is open to researchers in UK universities and research council institutes with current or past research council funding.

Funds are typically requested to further develop the scientific or technical aspects of an idea.  This may be to strengthen the intellectual property position, carry out further market research or investigate possible licensees.

Applications must be made through the JeS system (

The closing date for applications is 4pm, 6 June 2012.

NERC also funds a Follow-on Fund ‘Pathfinder’ scheme to support small-scale, specific activities that can help develop a better understanding of future work needs and may be beneficial when submitting a full Follow-on Fund application.

For more information and contact details go to

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

Useful documents

To find out more, please download the documents you need from the list below.

Guidance to applicants

Eligibility and assessment criteria

Specific guidance – ‘Full’ Follow-on Fund

Specific guidance – Follow-on Fund Pathfinder

Moderating panel membership

Guidance for writing supporting letters

EPSRC announce call: Working together in ICT


EPSRC’s ICT Theme intends to commit around £5M of funding for research projects which will directly address its Working Together priority.

Projects submitted in response to this call should comprise two or more ‘streams’ of research which run concurrently and show significant mutual benefit. These streams may include ICT researchers working with researchers in areas outside ICT, as long as the potential benefit to ICT research is the main driver for the project.

Full call document including background, funding available, aims and scope of call, eligibilty, how to apply and assessment can be found here.

Closing date: 16:00 on 10 July 2012

Submitting application

You should prepare and submit your proposal using the Research Councils’ Joint electronic Submission (Je-S) System (

When adding a new proposal, you should select: Council ‘EPSRC’; Document type ‘Standard Proposal’; Scheme ‘Standard Research’; On the Project Details page you should select the ‘Working Together in ICT’ call.

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

Alcohol Research UK announces Small Grants Scheme

Alcohol Research UK have reopened the Small Grants Scheme.

Competition is always tough for a small grant award, so please check the criteria before applying:

Criteria for Funding Projects:

Small grants could fund small research projects, pilot research studies or demonstration projects with a strong evaluation component, up to £5,000 in total. The following criteria are used to judge all applications for small grants:

  • Does the project have the potential to make a significant new contribution to the alcohol evidence base, either in its own right or as a precursor to a larger project?
  • Are the aims well defined and achievable?
  • Is there a sound evaluation component to check whether aims have been achieved?

Preference will be given to projects that will have a demonstrable impact.

Alcohol Research UK is unable to contribute to the running and general costs of organisations, make donations or fund ongoing service provision.

Download a copy of the Small Grant Project application form

Conferences and Conference Attendance:

Applications may be made for a contribution towards running a suitable conference of up to £3,000 subject to the following criteria:

  • The conference would help to disseminate important new evidence or theories;
  • It has clear and identifiable aims; and
  • There would be some post event evaluation regarding the influence on policy and practice and Alcohol Research UK would be provided with a conference report.

Applications for conference attendance to present a paper will only be accepted from Alcohol Research UK funded individuals.

Download a copy of the Small Grant Conference application form

Download a copy of the Small Grant Conference attendance application form

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.


MRC announce Special training fellowship in biomedical informatics

Special training fellowship in biomedical informatics (computational biology, neuroinformatics and health informatics)

The MRC has identified the application of informatics as an area of strategic importance to health and medical research. This special training fellowship is aimed at developing outstanding individuals who are seeking to move into the application of mathematical, statistical and computational methods to biomedical and health research problems.

The MRC is keen to support individuals with a clear ambition for their research and a strong and practical sense of how they develop their careers as leading biomedical scientists and informaticians. The special fellowship is awarded at the post-doctoral entry level only and all proposals must include a well-specified formal training element in addition to a research project. The award commonly provides 3 years support and the opportunity to enhance the research training through placement in an overseas research centre, a second UK research centre or in UK industry.

The MRC expect to make up to five awards a year.

Who can apply?

The fellowships are aimed at those with non-biological, biological, non-clinical or clinical backgrounds who wish to undertake training and research in biomedical informatics. This is a prestigious fellowship; therefore applicants are expected to demonstrate an excellent track-record relative to their time in research.

Applications are particularly encouraged from those with advanced training in the physical or mathematical sciences or in information technology, who wish to apply their expertise to biomedical problems. In particular, applications are encouraged in imaging informatics.

Applicants should hold either a PhD or DPhil in a relevant discipline or expect to do so by the time they intend to take up the award. Medical or dental applicants holding a PhD can apply at any stage in their careers from immediately post-registration up to specialist registrar grade or be at the equivalent level in general practice or dentistry. The majority of successful applicants are within six years of the completion of their PhD but this is not an absolute requirement.

Post-doctoral applicants have no residential restrictions and may come from any country. If you are invited to interview by the biomedical informatics training and career development panel, you would be expected to demonstrate a commitment to the UK research effort in the area of biomedical informatics beyond the period of a special training fellowship award.

What funding is provided?

An MRC special research training fellowship in biomedical informatics is usually awarded for three years or occasionally up to four years when there is special justification.

The fellowship provides the fellow’s personal salary, research training support costs, annual travel costs, and all other relevant costs under Full Economic Costs (see the guidance notes for completing the application form and the form itself for more details). Salaries for clinical applicants will be payable up to, but not including, NHS consultant level. In addition, a small amount of salary can be requested for supervision but this should be appropriately restricted.

Where the fellowship includes attendance on a formal course leading to a Masters degree, or parts of a taught course, course fees may be requested. All applications must include an appropriate taught training component.

Overseas/Second UK Centre/UK Industrial Training Period

The special research training fellowship in biomedical informatics provides the opportunity to spend time in an overseas research centre, a second UK research centre or UK industrial centre in year two or three of the award. The aim of this training component is to provide a concentrated period of training that cannot be achieved as effectively within the academic host institution. MRC would normally expect this training component to be a single visit lasting up to 12 months. However, the assessment panel may agree to requests for visits to more than one centre, if this can be justified on the grounds of training needs. These should not be simply collaborative visits but applicants are encouraged to consider this opportunity by the assessment panel. You should be prepared at interview to discuss in detail any visits proposed.

Deadlines and submission details

The MRC special research training fellowship in biomedical informatics competition is held once a year. There is no need to submit an outline application.

Please see fellowship deadlines dates for application deadlines.

Closing date: 19 September 2012

Short listing: January 2013

Interviews: 27 – 28 February and 1 March 2013

Take up dates: April – September 2013

Please apply for the Special Training Fellowship using the RCUK Je-S application system. Your proposal must be submitted through the MRC Je-S system by 4pm on the relevant Fellowhip Application deadline date.

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

Completion of specialist clinical training

If you are medically and dentally qualified and have not already completed your specialist or vocational training, you should have a clear idea of your plans for doing so at the time of application. Applicants wishing to pursue specialist or vocational training must consult their Postgraduate Medical Dean, Regional Advisor in General Practice, and Royal College prior to submitting the fellowship application to find out if the research may be acceptable as training towards the Certificate of Completion of Training. Enquiries and subsequent applications to the relevant body should be made in consultation with the prospective head of department.


The MRC tries to operate this scheme as flexibly as possible. As part of the MRC’s equal opportunities policy, consideration will be given to applicants who are returning to science following a career break. There are no age limits for any of our schemes and all fellowships may be held part-time to fit in with domestic responsibilities.

The MRC recognises the challenges faced by clinicians in combining research training with the demands of a clinical career. MRC therefore allow up to 20 per cent of fellows’ time for NHS sessions.

Alternatively, Fellows may spend up to six hours a week on other work such as teaching or demonstrating. The payment for this work may be retained in full if this is the host institution’s normal policy. Fellows may seek other research grants to be held concurrently with their award during its last six months only. However, they may not exceed the permitted time for other work on research grants.

Please see fellowship terms and conditions for further details.

Applications for further fellowship support

MRC special research training fellows who wish to consolidate their research skills and make the transition from post-doctoral research and training to become independent investigators are eligible to compete for an MRC clinician scientist fellowship (medical/dental graduates, nurses, midwives and members of the allied health professions) or, an MRC career development award (non-clinical scientists).

Guidance for applicants


For further information please refer to MRC’s contacts page.

MRC EoI for Research Consortia to establish a new cohort for intellectual disabilities research

The purpose of the MRC Call for Expression of Interest (EoI) is to gauge the likely interest in establishing a new cohort for research on intellectual disabilities. The EoIs solicited will inform discussion at a workshop to be held in the autumn and representatives from those submitting EoIs will be invited. The objective of the workshop will be to scope the feasibility and discuss the logistics of establishment and maintenance of a cohort in intellectual disabilities research in the light of the EoIs submitted.

The establishment of a cohort in this area would meet one of the recommendations of the Mental Health Review that was led by the MRC and published in 2010. The cohort would be a resource for high quality, hypothesis-driven research in an area where there is a perceived research gap. The final decision will be taken following the workshop and is dependent on establishing its feasibility. Funds have provisionally been set aside.

Remit of this call for EoIs

  • At the moment MRC are seeking interest in establishing a cohort that would cover any condition or conditions that have arisen due to impairment of brain development before or during birth, or in the childhood years before the brain is fully developed; and which has been caused by any biological and/or environmental factors.
  • The cohort will be established for epidemiological research on mental health and to provide information on risk factors and interventions. MRC also intends to explore the opportunity for designing the cohort to provide health care providers and care-givers with information that will inform the design of better care.
  • The cohort should initially be established within the UK.


The rationale for considering establishing a cohort is as follows:

  • The MRC-led review of mental health research noted the higher prevalence of psychiatric disorders and other co-morbidities among children with learning disabilities compared to children without learning disabilities; and the fact that those with more severe conditions are routinely excluded from patient and population based cohorts.
  • There is a strong need to understand how certain factors such as mental and physical health relate to health outcomes in those with intellectual disabilities.
  • From a scientific perspective, the study of rare and severe disorders can provide a unique insight into issues of much wider public health significance.
  • Establishing a well-characterised cohort of people with intellectual disabilities will enable more immediate studies of the different aspects of the possible phenotypes and might also provide the epidemiological information to assist the establishment and optimisation of clinical and social management across the age range.

What your EoI should address

At this stage MRC are seeking information about you, what research questions you consider to be most pressing, the feasibility and logistics issues you envisage and how you would seek to overcome them.  EoIs should provide the following information:

About you

  • Please provide the name of a single Principal Investigator, with host institution, who might lead a future bid and be administratively responsible for any award.
  • Names and institutional affiliations of up to three co-workers.
  • Please do not include CVs or any information that cannot be shared. Information on relevant funding and publications would be useful.
  • Please indicate your consent for information from the EoI to be shared with delegates in order to inform the autumn workshop.

Note: MRC will consider proposals from any UK-based researcher who can demonstrate that they will direct the proposed research and be actively engaged in carrying it through. Researchers from overseas institutions may be included in a proposal as a collaborator where the nature of the research makes this necessary but it is anticipated that this cohort will be wholly UK-based at least at the start.

About the research question

It is important that EoIs make clear what new health research questions or hypotheses it will be possible to answer over the next five to ten years using the cohort resource. Therefore you should address the following

  • A description of the most pressing research questions for the next 5 years listing the expected outcomes (maximum 2 sides of A4).
  • What the proposed cohort will offer that other cohorts do not (nationally and internationally) and how it relates to other relevant cohorts?

Logistics and feasibility

As many of these syndromes are rare, undertaking research in this area presents very particular challenges such as recruiting large enough samples and the associated geographic spread of any cohort. Therefore you should address the following:

  • What will be the target population (inclusion/exclusion)?
  • What will be the starting age for cohort subjects?
  • Who will be the comparison groups?
  • What sample size do you envisage?
  • Who would be the participating centres?
  • What expertise do you have (or plans do you have to engage with specialists) in the area?
  • What would be the plans for establishing the cohort as a resource – how is it/ will it be used by the wider research community?
  • What questions do you think the workshop should address?
  • What costs to the nearest million do you envisage the cohort costing, broken down into three or four major headings
  • Initially, if funded, the cohort would be supported for five years. How would you manage continuation or discontinuation of the cohort beyond five years?
  • How will the cohort be used to inform clinical decision making and inform policy or social care?

At this stage no details are needed on governance arrangements for data sharing and data access by the wider research community but please make you ensure that you are familiar with MRC policy on data sharing and preservation.


How to submit the EoI

There is no template or form and EoIs should be emailed, by 4pm Friday 8th June 2012, to:

Do not exceed 6 sides of A4 (Arial 11 point) including references but you may append a 1 page diagram (e.g. Gantt chart/ flow chart).


Process and timescale following submission of EoIs

Following the workshop, the outcome will be reported to MRC Boards. If agreed, we hope that we will be able to invite proposals from competing consortia or commission a single group depending on how researchers agree amongst themselves to organise their response to any call. We anticipate that a call for funding will be issued in the spring of 2013.

Alzheimer’s Society calls for Project Grants and PhD Studentship Grants

Project Grants: Next deadline: 29 June 2012

The objective of Alzheimer’s Society Project Grants is to provide funding for significant research projects in the areas of cause, cure, care or prevention of dementia.

Up to £225,000 funding per application may be requested, for periods up to 3 years.

PhD studentship Grants: Deadline: 27 July 2012

The objective of Alzheimer’s Society Project Grants is to provide funding for new PhD studentships in the areas of cause, cure, care or prevention of dementia.

Applications should be made by the prospective supervisor. Up to £80,000 may be requested consisting of a fixed student stipend and a budget for student fees, materials and consumables.

Project grants and PhD grants are open calls, for investigator led proposals across cause, cure, care and prevention of dementia. They wish to highlight that welcome applications for high quality complex interventions in social and psychological care since these are currently underrepresented in their portfolio. Applicants are also advised to look at the document ‘Challenges facing primary carers for people with dementia: Opportunities for research‘, which was prepared in consultation with Research Newwork volunteers.

Alzheimer’s Society now accepts applications for all types of research grants via an online grant application platform. Potential applicants should follow the link to the grants platform and register online to set up an account. Registered applicants will then be able to view and apply to grant rounds that are currently accepting applications. Applications will open approximately three months before the closing date.

The online platform can be accessed at

Any queries should be directed to

All applications submitted to Alzheimer’s Society will be peer reviewed and funding decisions will be made within six months. If you hold a grant from Alzheimer’s Society, then this will eventually be managed through the online platform. If you are interested in partnering with Alzheimer’s Society on a research project, but are not seeking funding from the Society, then please look at the partnership working page.

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

MRC Call for Career Development Award

The MRC career development award provides up to five years’ support for outstanding post-doctoral researchers who wish to consolidate their research skills and make the transition from post-doctoral research trainee to independent investigator. Applicants are expected to take advantage of the full five years’ funding available. It includes an option of 12 months research training outside the UK, in UK industry, or at another UK research centre, to enable fellows to acquire new transferable techniques and skills. The scheme also provides a jointly funded postdoctoral award in partnership with the Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Who can apply?

Applicants should have a PhD or DPhil and have at least three to six years’ post-doctoral experience at the time of application deadline. Applications from existing MRC research fellows and post-doctoral researchers returning from overseas are particularly welcome. Applicants who hold a research-oriented MSc degree and have undertaken at least four years’ appropriate postgraduate research work – such as in medical statistics – may be considered.

Medically and other clinically qualified professionals who are clinically active should consider MRC’s Clinical Fellowships or Population Health Scientist Fellowship schemes.

As with all MRC fellowships, these awards are not available to individuals who hold a tenured academic position at the time of application. If you hold a tenured position, you may apply for funding under one of the MRC’s grant schemes.

There are no residence eligibility restrictions for this fellowship. As part of the MRC’s equal opportunities policy, consideration will be given to applicants who are returning to science following a career break. There are no age limits for any of our schemes and all fellowships may be held part-time to fit in with domestic responsibilities.


Scientific Remit

Proposals are encouraged across all areas of the MRC’s remit. Applications may range from basic studies with relevance to mechanisms of disease, to translational and clinical research.

Funding provided

The fellowship provides a competitive salary, research support staff, research consumables expenses, travel costs and capital equipment appropriate for the research project under full economic costs. The award also provides funding for research training outside the UK. Higher requests for resources must be justified in terms of delivering the objectives of the research proposal.

Tenure of award

An MRC career development award may be awarded for up to five years. Applicants are expected to take advantage of the full five years funding available. Part-time fellowships for individuals who wish to combine research with domestic responsibilities may apply for a period of up to 5 years pro-rata.


The MRC and Multiple Sclerosis Society training fellowship

Applications are invited for this joint award from non-clinical researchers who also wish to undertake research into understanding and treating multiple sclerosis.

Clinical researchers may apply for this joint funding scheme through the MRC clinical research training fellowship.


Deadlines and submission details

This fellowship competition is held twice a year, however applicants may only apply to one CDA competition in any 12 month period. There is no need to submit an outline application.

Please apply for the Career Development Award using the RCUK Je-S application system.

Please see the schedule and deadlines for fellowships for closing dates.

Your proposal must be submitted through the MRC Je-S system by 4pm on the relevant closing date.

Closing date: 10 October 2012

Short listing: February 2013

Interviews: 20 -21 March 2013

Take up dates: April – September 2013 


Other work responsibilities

MRC career development fellows and research support staff funded through full-time fellowships may spend up to six hours a week teaching, demonstrating or supervising research staff not funded by the fellowship. Payment for such work may be retained in full if this is the host institution’s normal policy.


Applications for further support

Existing fellows who wish to continue developing their research careers, and who do not have an established position, would be eligible to compete for an MRC senior non-clinical fellowship.

Other grant support

Career development award holders are encouraged to apply as a principle investigator or co-investigator for grant support via an MRC research grant or collaboration grant, or grants from other funding organisations, subject to written approval from the MRC fellowship section. Fellows seeking this further support should ensure that the additional work can be carried out within the six hours per week allowed for other duties as stipulated under other work responsibilities and in the fellowship terms and conditions (part FA19). In certain cases consideration will be given to allowing the fellow to apply for grant funding which exceeds these limits.

Guidance for applicants

For further information please refer to MRC’s contacts page.

 The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

NIHR CSO Healthcare Science Research Fellowship Programme – Round 3 now launched

The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) in partnership with the Chief Scientific Officer (CSO) for the Department of Health has now launched round 3 of the NIHR/CSO Healthcare Science Research Fellowship Competition. The scheme supports the development of healthcare science research capacity and capability building, by providing funding to undertake research for patient benefit.

The Fellowships will support members of the NHS healthcare science workforce who already have some research experience and wish to bridge clinical or service careers and research. 

The two award levels are:

  • Doctoral: funding for individual doctoral level research and to undertake a PhD
  • Post-Doctoral: funding for individual postdoctoral research projects

Fellowships must be undertaken with the support of the relevant NHS line-manager and an appropriate academic partner. The research proposed must be of direct relevance to the NHS with the potential to improve service or clinical outcome. 

Applications are invited from individuals working in England from one of the three main Healthcare Scientist areas:

  • Biology
  • Physiology
  • Physics and Engineering.

Application Packs

An overview of the competition process, eligibility, funding, Review Panel and previous awards can be found on this link: FURTHER INFORMATION

Informal enquiries may be directed to

Closing date 24 Jul 12

Deadline information Deadline: emailed applications due 24 July; postal applications due 31 July 2012.

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

MRC call for Senior Non-Clinical Fellowship

The MRC senior non-clinical fellowship is a highly prestigious award that provides non-clinical researchers of exceptional ability with exceptional opportunities to develop themselves to be research leaders. Applicants will be proven independent researchers with a track record of excellence in their scientific field, and will demonstrate significant promise as future research leaders. Support is now provided for seven years.

Who can apply?

Applicants will normally hold a PhD/DPhil and have at least six years’ post-doctoral research experience in academia or the wider economy. Applications from current MRC Career Development Award holders are particularly welcome.

Proposals are encouraged across all areas of the MRC’s remit from basic molecular science to applied clinical research. Medically and other clinically qualified professionals who are clinically active are ineligible, and should consider MRC’s Clinical Fellowships or Population Health Scientist Fellowship schemes.

MRC fellowships are not available to individuals who hold a tenured academic or research position, in the UK or overseas, at the time of application. If you hold a tenured position you should instead apply for funding under one of the MRC grant schemes. Similarly, individuals without formal tenure who are already supported by their Research Organisation as research team leaders should seek MRC grant funding rather than support via an MRC fellowship. There are no residence eligibility restrictions for this fellowship.

As part of the MRC equal opportunities policy, consideration will be given to applicants who are returning to science following a career break. There are no age limits for any of our schemes and all fellowships may be held part-time to fit in with domestic responsibilities.

Funding provided

The award provides a competitive personal salary for the fellow, research support staff, research consumables expenses and capital equipment appropriate for the research project, travel costs, and other appropriate items under full economic costs at a UK research organisation.

However, a Fellowship is not merely a large personal “grant.” Now that the awards are for seven years, candidates must show a commitment to developing the breadth of their research careers as well as excellence in depth. We recognise that plans for the later stages of a fellowship may be less detailed than those for the earlier years. Nevertheless, applicants should have ambitious and credible ideas for developing themselves as research leaders – scientists with vision and the ability to drive change.

Applicants are encouraged to take advantage of the opportunity provided by the Senior Non-Clinical Fellowship to spend time in an overseas research centre, a second UK research centre or a UK industrial centre. The aim is to provide a concentrated period of training that cannot be achieved as effectively within the academic host institution. MRC consider this period at a second centre to provide an invaluable opportunity to broaden fellows’ development towards becoming a research leader, and they would normally expect the Fellow to make one visit of up to 12 months. The interview panel may agree to requests for visits to more than one centre, if this can be justified on the grounds of training and development needs. These should not be simply collaborative visits. The Felllow should be prepared at interview to discuss in detail any visits proposed.

Tenure of award

An MRC Senior Non-Clinical Fellowship may be awarded for any period up to seven years. A mid-term review will be conducted by Panel members and MRC staff, to evaluate the fellow’s progress and institutional support, and also as an opportunity to provide mentorship and career advice for the fellow.

When applying, the case for support should describe a plan for seven years of research. However it is appreciated that during the tenure of the award, advances will be made and unexpected results may be produced which impact on the planned work, especially in the later years of the award. Consequently they encourage applicants to outline options for the last years of the fellowship rather than provide comprehensive details.

To account for the new longer duration, the case for support may be up to 12 pages in length.

Deadlines and submission details

This fellowship competition is held twice a year. There is no need to submit an outline application. Please see the schedule and deadlines for fellowships for closing dates.

Please apply for the Senior Non-Clinical Fellowship using the RCUK Je-S application system. Your proposal must be submitted through the MRC Je-S system by 4pm on the relevant deadline date.

Closing date: 10 October 2012

Short listing: February 2013

Interviews: 20 -21 March 2013

Take up dates: April – September 2013

Other work responsibilities

MRC senior non-clinical fellows and research support staff funded through full-time fellowships may spend up to six hours a week on teaching, demonstrating or other work. Payment for this work may be retained in full if this is the host institution’s normal policy.

Applications for other grant support

It is expected that senior fellows will seek grant support either from the MRC, through a research grant or other funding streams, or grants from other funding organisations. In applying for such funding, fellows should be mindful of their fellowship commitments (see above).

Guidance for applicants

For further information please refer to MRC’s contacts page.

 The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

BSG Calls in Geomorphology

The British Society for Geomorphology has issued three calls in Geomorphological research. 

The first is Innovative and Emerging Techniques in Geomorphology.

Up to £10,000 (ideally £5,000) is available to support the development of new technology and/or analytical techniques in geomorphology as stated in the BSG Mission, Sections 1.5 and 1.6. It is envisaged that the pump-priming of new techniques in geomorphology will support applications to the RCUK. Applications must have a geomorphological focus.

Deadline: 30 September 2012

The second is Early Career Researcher.

Up to £10,000 (ideally £5,000) is available to pump-prime geomorphological research undertaken by an Early-Career Researcher (ECR). We define an ECR as a member of staff who holds an employment contract of 0.2FTE or greater and who started their academic career within four years of the closing date of applications. Note that to be eligible for this scheme, the primary employment function of applicants must be in ‘research’ or ‘teaching and research’, within any HEI or other organisation, whether in the UK or overseas.

PLEASE NOTE: Applicants should state the start date of their career on the application form.

There is no restriction on the type of support eligible for funding (e.g. conference, workshop, field visit, data purchase, lab costs), although consistent with other BSG grant schemes, they will not support salaries. Applications will be evaluated both for the quality of the research, and for its potential to pump-prime subsequent work.

Applicants to the ECR scheme cannot be a Principal Investigator on any other grant bids to the BSG in the same funding round.

Deadline(s): 30 September and 1 February

The third is in Research Networks in SE Asia and China.

Up to £10,000 (ideally £5,000) is available to support development of research networks in SE Asia and China. The purpose of this grant is to bring together global partners with a research interest in the SE Asia or China region. It is envisaged the £10,000 may support one or more workshops or conferences hosted within the region by SE Asia or China colleagues. The region supported by these awards includes India but excludes Japan.

Deadline: 30 September 2012

All applications should be applied for Online through the BSG’s site.

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

ISBE and ESRC announce call for Research and Knowledge Exchange Fund

Exploring knowledge exchange and transfer processes and possibilities for SME internationalisation

The Institute for Small Business and Entrepreneurship (ISBE) Research and Knowledge Exchange (RAKE) fund is an initiative supported by Barclays Bank and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) administered through ISBE.  This initiative aims to encourage and support research activities from academics, third sector organisations, consultants and practitioners with the ambition of drawing together and generating an entrepreneurial community of practice to facilitate knowledge exchange and transfer.

Applications are invited from individuals or teams. Collaborative bids which draw together any combination of third sector organisations, academic researchers, consultants and practitioners are welcome. The Principal Investigator must be employed within a UK institution but may be partnered with an international team. Research teams which demonstrate capacity building through collaborations between experienced and early career academics would be favourably considered; applications which demonstrate ‘in-kind’ contributions from partner organisations are welcomed as are those jointly funded from other sources.  Applications presented as pilot studies, with the aim of generating future funding from other sources, are encouraged. As such, we wish to promote engagement with all who have an interest or stake in generating further insight and understanding into contemporary entrepreneurial activities, behaviours and practices.  For the 2012 call for applications, a number of critical themes have been identified which are of contemporary interest and offer potential to develop knowledge exchange and transfer links.

Exploring processes and possibilities of SME internationalisation

There is a growing focus and interest upon the process of small firm internationalisation which includes ‘born globals’ and those firms tentatively seeking export opportunities.  Axiomatically, smaller firms face a range of challenges related to resource accrual and management when entering international markets. However, a recent survey by UKTI found that the proportion of small UK firms exporting has increased by 10 percent since 2004. In addition, UKTI are actively supporting SME internationalisation on the basis that exporting firms are more productive and innovative, have greater resilient during economic down turns and exhibit lower failure rates than those firms focussed upon local markets.  It would appear that internationalisation is an attractive option for SMEs in terms of potential returns but developing appropriate contacts, networks, resources, managerial capabilities and strategic partnerships is challenging.  Accordingly, we invite proposals which investigate and analyse any aspect of the SME internationalisation process and specifically, any knowledge exchange and transfer issues.  A potential but not exhaustive list of suggestions would include:

• Strategies to overcome barriers to the internationalization process for UK SMEs
• Developing capacity and dynamic capabilities through national and international partnerships between SMEs but also between SMEs and corporate firms
• Evaluations of policy support structures to encourage internationalization – exploring the opportunities of working with Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPS), Chambers of Commerce and specific industry support groups
• Regional SME support for developing internalization strategies focused on specific sectors and value added industries
• Enhancing networks and information exchange possibilities between potential export firms and international partners
• Gaining knowledge of and tapping into potential new markets in developing economies
• Using networks and contacts to facilitate the export process

Attention is drawn to the current Business Engagement Strategy of the ESRC which embraces three broad priorities any of which can be mapped onto and integrated with the themes outlined above:

•    Economic Performance and Sustainable Growth
•    Influencing Behaviour and Informing Interventions
•    A Vibrant and Fair Society

Clearly, the contribution of entrepreneurship and entrepreneurial activity can be mapped onto these priorities.  Thus, applications which indicate their relevance to these issues would be welcomed.  Despite any distinctive focus, it is emphasised that all proposals must clearly demonstrate and describe relevance to the notion of knowledge transfer and exchange related to the context of the bid.

For this round of funding, they envisage awarding a number of separate grants of around £10,000 – £12,000 each.  These will not support full economic costing given ISBE’s position as a registered charity. Applications for smaller, seed corn funds would not be discounted however, bids of over £12,000 will not be considered.

Successful grant holders will be required to fulfil the following conditions:
• To be in membership of ISBE for the duration of the award
• To present their work at the annual ISBE conference
• To make findings available to the ESRC’s business channel on ESRC Society Today (EST)
• To produce a satisfactory end of award report within three months of the completion of the research
• To recognise the ISBE RAKE fund in any presentations or publications arising from an award
• To report to the RAKE fund management board to discuss research progress

Further details on the aims and constitution of the ISBE RAKE fund can be found at:

The closing date for applications is 5 p.m. Friday 15th June 2012 with notifications of awards given by mid September. It is suggested that the earliest starting date for research projects should be 1st October 2012.

Completed applications may be returned electronically to Chris Rolles at To download an electronic application form please click here Please submit applications in MSWord format – not as a PDF file. This enables anonymisation of proposals.

Applicants may contact the following ISBE board members and staff for informal discussions regarding their bids and/or the aims of RAKE:

Professor Susan Marlow VP: Research ISBE: RAKE Fund Manager.
Professor Lynn Marting ISBE President
Dr Maura McAdam Board Member
Professor Gerard McElwee Board Member
Professor Dean Patton Treasurer: ISBE
Lorraine Reese lorraine@isbe Business and Events Manager: ISBE

 The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

Key Points from April University Research and Knowledge Exchange Forum

The latest meeting of the University Research and Knowledge Exchange Forum (URKEF) was held on 23 April.  A summary of the key points is given below.

Update on key EIS projects:

  • The Publications Management System aka BRIAN (Bournemouth Research, Information and Networking) will be fully launched on 22nd June.  More details of BRIAN will be published soon.
  • Collaboration Tools for Academics – blogs, wikis and web cloud to go live at the end of April.
  • PGR Monitoring System – contract negotiations are underway and an implementation approach to be agreed with the supplier, Aveda.
  • pFACT – interface testing taking place.


Erasmus Mundus – the scheme involves students and staff increasing their European mobility.  The paper sought approval for R&KEO to formally take over the management of Erasmus Mundus for BU, which was endorsed.  More information on the scheme can be found in the link above.

Internal process for calls with institutional quotas – the proposed process is for when external funders use quotas, have limited awards available, or require an institutional self-sift prior to submission for their calls.  The current process is adhoc and so a more formal process of academics registering their interest in a call and submitting an outline proposal, internal peer review, PVC decision, and then support provided by the RDO will lead to better management and resource of staff expectations and the best applications going forward. The process was endorsed.

Grants Academythis was launched last month and the first training session will take place on 9-10th May with 15 BU staff taking part. The Media School will pilot strand two.  There was discussion around bespoke training sessions, which was encouraged.

Fusion Investment FundFIF was launched last week and there are three key strands available to staff: staff mobility and networking, co-production and co-creation, and study leave, all of which will stimulate student education, research and professional practice and have huge potential.  Individual grants will be awarded between £5-75k (depending on the strand), and £3M is available in total per annum for the first three years. The fund is merit based and underpins a competitive spirit in order to create upskilling and so excellent applications will need to be put forward. Where Schools have funds for pump priming research, the requests can be far greater than the School can afford. Paring budgets down means that more can be afforded and double-counting is avoided.

RKE Ops meetings with Schools – Major funders run Early Career Researcher schemes and often require a statement from the School outlining how a proposed project fits within the institutional/ School research, career development and knowledge transfer strategies.  RKE Ops have been raising awareness of this with the Schools as the letters indicating support are a really important part of the selection process, and require considerable thought and development.  Recent feedback from ESRC highlighted several areas where BU could improve on.  There are BU wide schemes that will feed into this such as the Vitae Researcher Development Framework and the Grants Academy, which will help to develop bid writing skills and provide mentoring for successful projects, which will be mentioned at future meetings.

HEIF-5 update – Funding had been agreed with HSC to support their dementia theme (BU Dementia Institute).  Also, the Media School theme (Soho on Sea) staff are going to LA soon to visit Pixar and other major animation companies.  It was emphasised that BU are always looking for investment strategies, innovation and themes and Schools were encouraged to come forward and discuss ideas and see what could be done for them.

Technology Strategy Board and MRC call to address Healthcare challenges

The £180 million Biomedical Catalyst, announced by David Cameron in December 2011, will see the Medical Research Council and the Technology Strategy Board working together to provide responsive and effective support for the best life science opportunities arising in the UK.

Support through the Biomedical Catalyst is available to UK businesses (SMEs) and academics looking to develop innovative solutions to healthcare challenges either individually or in collaboration.

This joint programme between the MRC and TSB will offer three categories of grant:

Feasibility Award

Early Stage Award

 Late Stage Award

The categories are designed to support the maturation of an idea from concept to commercialisation. This will create a pipeline of projects encompassing the early stage exploration of commercial and technical potential through to proving utility in the field (which may involve human clinical trials) and development prior to commercialisation. Applicants may apply for the award category most appropriate for their work without having received a prior award.

Support will be available for projects arising from any sector or discipline that are aimed at addressing healthcare challenges. Example solutions may include (but are not limited to): stratified healthcare (both therapy and diagnostic components), regenerative medicine, diagnostics, eHealth and mHealth solutions, enabling medical technologies and devices. The Biomedical Catalyst will seek to support those opportunities which demonstrate the highest scientific and commercial potential irrespective of medical area.

Please see the Technology Strategy Board healthcare page for more information about their work in this area.

The Biomedical Catalyst will operate in response mode and will in essence be “always open”. However to assist the processing of applications there will be key submission and assessment dates which will differ depending on the category of award and applicant type, please see the links/dates below for further details. The assessment of Early and Late Stage awards will culminate in a panel assessment for both academic and business led applications enabling funding decisions to be made three times a year.

All applications will be subject to assessment by independent expert reviewers with short-listed applicants for Late Stage Awards being interviewed by a committee. Applicants for Late Stage Awards are advised to note that should they be successful in being invited to interview they should hold the dates of the next committee meetings as these are fixed and non-negotiable. Dates will be confirmed when applicants are sent their invitation to submit a full stage proposal (and will be posted on this page in due course).

Please note: If your application is led by an academic, you will need to apply on the Medical Research Council website.

If your application is led by a business, you should make your application on the TSB website.

Open date: 30 April 2012


The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.


Daiwa Foundation Tohoku Scholarships open now!

In response to the 11 March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in the north east of Japan the Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation, in partnership with the British Council in Japan, launched a £250,000 scholarship fund to support Japaneses students in the Tohoky region.  They are now accepting applications for the 2012 round of scholarships.

The aim of this initiative is to support post-secondary level students affected by the March 2011 disasters, in particular those areas most affected (Miyagi, Fukushima and Iwate prefectures), seeking to study for a period at an educational institution in the United Kingdom. Applications will also be considered from students from the Tohoku region who are currently studying in the UK but who require financial support to continue their studies.

Scholarship applications may be submitted for the following types of courses, beginning in 2012 or 2013:

  • Undergraduate and postgraduate degree courses (including foundation programmes) in all subject areas
  • PhD and post-doctoral research programmes
  • Vocational courses at universities and colleges of further education
  • English language courses (e.g. pre-sessional courses, English language summer schools)

The amount of funding available will be determined on a case-by-case basis. Sufficient funding will be awarded to cover fees, living expenses and travel expenses for an applicant’s intended course, in line with its level and duration. Therefore, applicants are required to explain their vision for the future and financial plans as part of the application process. Priority will be given to students who can demonstrate seriousness of purpose and financial need. Successful applicants must secure a place on a course of study at a UK institution in order to take up funding.

Application forms can be downloaded from the British Council’s Japan website (, and should include a personal statement outlining the purpose of study and long-term goals. Completed application forms should be sent to: Daiwa Foundation Tohoku Scholarships section, British Council, 1-2 Kagurazaka, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 162-0825

The application deadline is 15 June 2012 (applications postmarked up to this date will be accepted). Applicants who intend to study in the UK on courses of up to three months will be assessed on the basis of the application form alone; applicants who intend to study on courses of over three months will be asked to come to either London or Tokyo for an interview. The selection panel will assess applications and inform applicants who are selected for interview by early July. Interviews will take  place on 10 and 11 July 2012 in London, and on 18 and 19 July 2012 in Tokyo. All successful applicants (for courses of both up to and over three months) will be informed of the results in mid-August.

For further information visit the call website: and read the scheme notes: 

The closing date is 15 June 2012.

EPSRC/ESRC Invitation for Outlines: Consortia for Exploratory Research in Security


As part of their contribution to the RCUK Global Uncertainties Programme, EPSRC and ESRC are jointly inviting proposals for research consortia (PDF 79KB) to explore current and future cyber security challenges.

CEReS consortia are encouraged to work across or between established disciplines and to draw on expertise from multiple research organisations wherever necessary. They particularly welcome proposals with significant novel mathematics and/or social science content.

Initially, outline proposals will be assessed for their novelty and fit to the aims of the call. Successful outline applicants will be invited to submit full proposals later in 2012.

EPSRC and ESRC have made available up to £4M available to fund full proposals funded through the CEReS call. They expect to support a range of projects which is broad in terms of scale (likely to be between £500k and £1M for each consortium), duration (two to four years), mix of disciplines (with single discipline proposals being the exception rather than the norm) and subject matter (although all must focus on cyber security-related challenges in the broadest sense).  Activities funded through CEReS are limited to those currently allowed on EPSRC grants. As a result they will not be able to accept applications which request funding for PhD studentships, even if they are outside EPSRC’s remit.

CEReS is a call for exploratory research. Consortia should identify ambitious goals with far-reaching impacts on future research and, potentially at least, practice in cyber security. Projects which continue or extend current work in a straightforward or obvious way will not be supported. Collaboration between disciplines is strongly encouraged. Although it is not essential that all projects include cross- or intra-disciplinary working it is likely that the assessment process will select positively for consortia which adopt this approach.

Although it is being managed by EPSRC the CEReS call is also open to researchers eligible to apply for targeted funding from ESRC. There is no quota of applications or funding based on Research Council remits. It is possible for the same researcher(s) to be associated with more than one consortium application.

For further information visit the call website: and read the call documentation: Outline proposals should be prepared and submitted using the Research Councils’ Joint electronic Submission (JeS) System (

The RKE Operations team can help you with your application.

The closing date is 14 June 2012.

Research Development Fund – Small Grants Scheme Closes 31 May

The next round of the internal small grants scheme closes this month on 31st May.  The scheme provides up to £2000 per application for direct costs.

Examples of research activities covered by the RDF include:

  • Pilot projects
  • Pump-priming
  • Interview transcription
  • Fieldwork
  • Visiting major libraries, museums, other research institutions, etc.
  • Organisation of an academic conference at BU with external participants
  • Attendance at external networking events leading to collaborative research proposals
  • Meetings with external organisations to establish collaborations
  • Preparation of specialist material or data
  • Short-term Research Assistant support or replacement teaching
  • Research consumables and equipment (providing it is clear these would not normally be purchased by the School)

This list is not exhaustive; applications can be for other expenses providing it is clear how the funding will benefit research at BU.  This Scheme is only open to BU Academic Staff members (normally restricted to academics based in Schools).

If you would like to apply the application form and full details can be found here.  The applications must be emailed to the Research Development Unit ( by 31st May 2012