Applying for Research Funding Dr Emma Jones Centre for the History of Science, Technology & Medicine University of Manchester Aims of the Session • Give an overview of PhD and Postdoctoral funding opportunities • Provide hints and tips on how to prepare a funding application • Provide examples of successful funding applications • Opportunity to ask questions About me BA Modern History (RHUL) MA Women’s History (RHUL) AHRC Masters Studentship PhD History (RHUL) AHRC Doctoral Studentship Research Associate (CHSTM): project funded by NHS Research Associate (CHSTM) ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship Research Associate (CHSTM): project funded by NHS Research Associate (CHSTM) Wellcome Trust Research Fellowship in Medical History Sources of Postgraduate and Postdoctoral Funding PhD Postdoc AHRC ESRC Institute of Historical Research Institutional sources Wellcome Trust British Academy ESRC Institute of Historical Research JRFs (Junior Research Fellowships Oxford/Cambridge) Leverhulme Trust Wellcome Trust Major PhD Funding Sources Arts and Humanities Research Council Doctoral Awards Fund universities directly, either via the Block Grant Partnerships or Block Grant Partnerships: Capacity Building Students should talk to the institution at which they plan to study in order to obtain information on their organisational selection processes; advertised 3 years of full-time study, or up to 5 years of part-time study Fees and maintenance grant Major PhD Funding Sources Economic and Social Research Council Doctoral Awards Award all studentship funding directly to the institutions - network of 21 Doctoral Training Centres (DTCs). All potential students should consult the list of DTCs and contact the institution at which they wish to undertake a research degree directly. Also collaborative studentships CASE awards between the ESRC, a university and government, business and third sector organisations Fees and maintenance grant Major PhD Funding Sources Wellcome Trust Medical History and Humanities Doctoral Studentships Candidates can be based in the humanities, social sciences, or the arts, the project they propose must be grounded in historical methodologies and/or sources. Applications must be submitted through the host institution (prelim/full application deadlines) 3 years of full-time study Fees, maintenance grant, and expenses Major PhD Funding Sources Institute of Historical Research Junior Fellowships Several IHR fellowships: awarded to PhD candidates who have completed at least 2 years' research Economic History Society: awarded to PhD candidates in economic/social history (broadly defined) who have completed at least 3 years' (fulltime) research Jacobite Studies Trust: awarded to PhD candidates who have been registered for at least 3 years full-time or 6 years part-time Major Postdoc Funding Sources Institute of Historical Research Junior Research Fellowships Designed to write up PhD for publication Economic History Society: award up to 5 one-year fellowships to postdoctoral candidates who have recently completed a doctoral degree in economic/social history (broadly defined) Past and Present Postdoctoral Fellowships: award up to 2 one-year postdoctoral fellowships Maintenance Major Post-doc Funding Sources British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship Up to 3 years funding; FEC Award approx. 45 fellowships 2012 Covers salary and research expenses Eligibility: support of UK institution; in receipt of doctorate on or after 1 April 2009 or expected to submit and be examined by 1April 2010; must be a UK or EEA national, or have completed a doctorate at a UK university, or demonstrate a strong prior association with the UK academic community, for example through already having been employed in a temporary capacity (longer than six months) at a UK university. 2 stage online application Major Post-doc Funding Sources Economic and Social Research Council Future Research Leaders scheme (new) Award: max 3 years with an overall limit of £215,000 (at 100 per cent full Economic Cost); cover salary and research costs Eligibility: Open to high-quality candidates from anywhere in the world with less than 4 years' postdoctoral experience Application with support of an eligible UK research organization internal vetting Aim to fund around 70 awards Research grants scheme Awards ranging from £200,000 to £2 million (100 per cent full Economic cost) Individuals or research teams up to a period of 5 years Major Post-doc Funding Sources Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowships Award approx. 80 fellowships a year Any discipline; held at universities or other HEIs in the UK 3 years full-time; part time will be considered Trust contributes 50% of total salary costs up to a maximum of £23,000 per annum; research expenses up to £6000 Eligibility: in receipt of doctorate - not more than 5 years (career breaks excepted) Online application Closing date: 4.00pm on 8 March 2012 Study Abroad Studentships support between 12 and 24 months of advanced study or research at a centre of learning in any overseas country £17,000 maintenance; dependence allowance; return airfare; baggage allowance Eligibility: resident in the UK for at least five years at the time of application; hold an undergraduate degree from a UK institution; a student at the time of application or have been registered as a student within the last 8 years; able to demonstrate how their work would benefit from being conducted overseas rather than in the UK Current round must commence between between 1 June 2012 and 1 May 2013 Online application Major Post-doc Funding Sources Wellcome Trust Research Fellowships in Medical History and Humanities 3 years full-time (part time considered). Research expenses and a salary, plus appropriate employer's contributions (fEC), and research expenses and conference travel. Eligibility: must be a postdoctoral scholar not in a tenured or otherwise long-term established post; sponsored by an institution Application: Prelim in writing; final online submission Deadline: prelim/full application deadlines twice a year and an interview if selected Other Postdoc Funding Sources Institutional Research Fellowships More universities are now offering 1-2 year fellowships Advertised on www.Jobs.ac.uk and other job sites (e.g. Guardian) Junior Research Fellowships (JRFs) These are offered by the colleges of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge Advertised on www.Jobs.ac.uk and through the individual college websites Restrictive eligibility Post as a research assistant/associate Advertised on www.Jobs.ac.uk and other job sites (e.g. Guardian) Eligibility The rules around academic and residence eligibility can be quite complicated. In the interest that I don’t make a mistake and do not give false hope, please consult the following web pages/documents from the relevant funding bodies: AHRC http://www.ahrc.ac.uk/FundingOpportunities/Pages/Eligibility.aspx British Academy http://www.britac.ac.uk/funding/guide/pdfells.cfm ESRC eligibility details are given on the specific scheme, see: http://www.esrc.ac.uk/funding-and-guidance/funding-opportunities/ Wellcome Trust eligibility details are given on the specific scheme, see: http://www.wellcome.ac.uk/Funding/Medical-history-and-humanities/Fundingschemes/index.htm Institute of Historical Research eligibility details are given on the specific scheme, see: http://www.history.ac.uk/fellowships/junior Making an Application First Steps • Plan ahead, prepare and allow sufficient time • Identify funding body and institution • Familiarise yourself with application deadlines, assessment processes and application requirements etc. • Speak to the funding council • Start small and build up – where you can, try and link with experienced and successful PIs and research groups. • Don’t be afraid to approach new collaborators internally and externally, including moving institution • Choose your mentor • Make friends with your research office/finance dept and know the internal deadlines for internal checks • Register on the appropriate electronic submission system Making an Application know what you’re up against Success Rates ESRC 2009-2010 • Small grants – 19% (124/653) • Stand. grants – 14% (94/682) British Academy 2006-2009 • Humanities - 6-8% • Social Sciences - 12.8% Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowships • 700 applications in March 2010 round • 70 fellowships available in 2011 Making an Application writing your research proposal • Seek examples of past applications • Follow the guidelines provided by the funding body, understand their terms and use their language • Will you need ethics approval? • Remember to build in dissemination and outreach publications / extend beyond academia • Get a colleague / member of supporting institution to read your proposal before submitting it • Get yourself known in your research community – meet your future mentor; referees, and choose your referees wisely! Making an Application preparing a research budget • What is ‘FEC’ - Full Economic Cost? • Check what the funding body will and will not cover and what’s already included • Possible funds to consider – Money for research travel and subsistence – Consumables (e.g. photocopying; transcriptions) – Equipment (e.g. computer; digital camera; voice recorder; scanner; extra hard-drive etc) – Money for travel to conferences (including registration and subsistence) – Money to host a workshop / conference – Training and discipline hopping • Justify your costings Making an Application what the reviewers will assess Reviewers will be asked to comment on: • Research quality and impact - Comment on the quality of the proposed research; the strengths and weaknesses of the proposed plan of investigation; the importance of the problem to be addressed, in relation to the particular field of research as a whole • Methodology - Comment on the feasibility of the proposed methodology; the relevance of the background information provided • The appropriateness of the equipment and running costs - are they appropriate to the type, scale and impact of the proposed project • The applicant - The standing of the applicant in the field • Overall research quality - How does this application compare with other grants you have refereed? Rate and grade it. Making an Application Sifting and Rejection Taken from the blog Research Fundermentals http://fundermental.blogspot.com/2011/09/keepers-of-keys.html ‘ESRC applications don’t go straight to panel. They go through a sifting process, including: • Office sift: roughly 10% of applications get rejected at this stage on technicalities, such as not having the right attachments, sections not being filled, format not being adhered to, etc; • Reviewers' sift: roughly 30% get rejected at this stage. If the reviewers identify substantial flaws, and grade the applications accordingly; • Introducers' sift: I think this has been in place for some time, but I hadn't realised the scale of it before now. Each application is allocated to two introducers, who will have the responsibility of introducing the application to the panel. However, they can reject applications before they get to panel if they think that, realistically, they don't stand any real chance of getting funding, and it would be wasting the panel's time to discuss them.’ Making an Application common reasons for rejection • • • • • • • • • • Problem not important enough. Failing to set out an appropriate and convincing methodology Failing to convey the excellence of the research Problem more complex than investigator appears to realize. Too little detail in the research plan to convince reviewers the investigator knows what he or she is doing. Over-ambitious research plan - unrealistically large amount of work. Investigator too inexperienced or has failed to establish the necessary links to the research community. Failing to demonstrate value to potential users outside or within the research community Failing to convince of the ability to deliver research Failing to demonstrate value for money Summary • Allow yourself plenty of time • Study your funding source: read and read again the rules and the guidance notes • Writing; follow the funding-bodies formulas • Discuss your proposal with colleagues and referees, esp. those who have successfully obtained funding • Think about how to build dissemination activities into your research plan • Justify your costings • Leave time to get your proposal through internal checks at your institution and the electronic systems of the funding body Any questions?