SPRU DPhil Day : Postdoctoral Fellowships & Funding. David Rose Research & Enterprise

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1 SPRU DPhil Day : Postdoctoral Fellowships & Funding David Rose Research & Enterprise 27 th May 2010

2 Applying for Postdoctoral Fellowships & Funding What central support is available? What funding schemes are there? Writing a good proposal

3 Research & Enterprise what we can do to help WHEN YOU RE APPLYING: Advice/information on sources of funding Sponsors guidelines, eligibility rules and application procedures Feedback on draft bids (library of bids) Costing and pricing Internal policy / School approval procedures Ethical/Research Governance issues

4 Research & Enterprise what we can do to help (cont.) WHEN YOU HAVE AN AWARD: Checking terms and conditions Contract negotiation Accepting awards and signing contracts

5 Postdoctoral Fellowships and Funding POSTDOC FELLOWSHIPS ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowships British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowships Nuffield Foundation New Career Development Fellowships Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowships RESEARCH GRANTS ERSC Research Grants Leverhulme Trust Research Grants Framework Programme 7 Collaborative Projects

6 ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowships Funds new researchers for 1 year (2 years if in Economics) or for a maximum of 2 years part-time (4 years if in Economics) Aims: To produce publications & disseminate research findings To further improve research /related skills through additional specialised training To carry out further limited research based on PhD and related work new unrelated work may NOT be undertaken Eligibility: No more than 3 years active postdoc experience Returning to research No nationality restrictions Priority Areas 2009: Economics, Education, Management and Business Studies, Advanced Quantitative Methods, Social Work and Socio- Legal Studies Global Environmental Change

7 ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowships (cont.) Application: Je-S no deadline Justification for choice of institution Head of Department & Mentor statement (can t be PhD supervisor) Funding = salary + minor research expenses + overheads Overseas institutional visit for up to 3 months Evaluation: Evaluated by 2 peer reviewers member of ESRC Board Decision within 14 weeks of submission Minimum 22 weeks between submission + start date Can not resubmit unsuccessful bid unless proposal has been substantially revised

8 British Academy Postdoc Fellowship Funds early career researchers for 3 years Aim: To strengthen research & teaching experience thereby developing CV and improving prospects of obtaining permanent lecturing post Completing a significant piece of publishable work Eligibility: OK if : (i) British; or (ii) PhD from UK University; or (iii) EEA nationals living in UK + holding temporary academic post Must have PhD within 3 years of outline deadline or before April following outline deadline

9 British Academy Postdoc Fellowship (cont.) Application & evaluation details: 2 stage: outline Oct; notification following Jan; full stage Feb Paper application, Head of Dept & University signatures needed At full stage an example of written work is submitted Applicant provides 2 referees - used at outline stage, just BA selection panel at full stage Funding = salary + up to 2k research expenses + mentor s salary + overheads Decision within 7 months of outline deadline

10 Nuffield Foundation New Career Development Fellowship Supports new & experienced partnerships for up to 3 years currently under review Aims: To develop UK social science research capacity: Projects must focus on issues of serious social significance Carried out in partnership with an experienced social scientist Additionality Opportunity to take a change of direction Eligibility: Must have PhD and no more than 5 years postdoc experience No age limits but must be time after Fellowship to pursue an independent research career Normally based in the UK at time of application

11 Nuffield Foundation New Career Development Fellowship (cont.) Application & evaluation details: 2 stage application, outline September, notified November, full bid December Paper application 170k total funding: fellow salary + research expenses + up to 25k for experienced partner Don t provide referees bids considered by NF Fellowship Committee Decisions within 6 months of outline deadline

12 Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship Part-funds early career researchers for 2 or 3 years Aims: To provide career development opportunities for those with a proven record of research Fellowship should lead to a more permanent academic position Eligibility: Cannot hold or have held a full time permanent post in a UK University Should normally have a degree from a UK University by time of award Should normally be under the age of 35 Should hold a doctorate at time of taking up the award (if registered for a doctorate must have submitted thesis by deadline)

13 Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship (cont.) Application & evaluation details: Annual deadline in March Online application institutional approval needed Provide 3 referees Funding = only 50% of salary + up to 6k research expenses p.a. check if SPRU is supporting this scheme before you do anything! Decision within 10 weeks

14 ESRC Research Grants Funds investigator-initiated research projects Aim: To fund a wide range of activity from a small scoping study to a large scale collaborative project Eligibility: No nationality restrictions Do not have to have a University funded post to apply Application & evaluation details: Je-S no deadline Provide 2 academic referees + optional user referee Funding = can cover PI salary + RA salary + research expenses + overheads < 100k (Small Grant) = Light touch evaluation 1 member of Board + 1 referee ESRC Board Chair Decision within weeks of submission

15 Leverhulme Trust Research Project Grants Funds investigator-initiated research projects 2 to 3 years up to 250k Proposals are favoured which: reflect the personal vision of the applicant; demonstrate compelling competence in the research design; surmount traditional disciplinary academic boundaries; involve a degree of challenge and evidence of the applicant's ability to assess risk. Eligibility: No nationality restrictions Expected to have a University funded post to apply Application & evaluation details: no deadline for outline application / 12 weeks before decision Decision within 4 months of full submission Provide 2 academic referees Funding = some replacement teaching costs for PI + RA salary + research expenses (no overheads)

16 European Union FP7: Seventh Framework Programme ( ) Cooperation: multi-national collaborative projects Capacities: infrastructures / SMEs / regional clusters People: Marie Curie Fellowships Ideas: European Research Council 16

17 Timeline JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC BRITISH ACADEMY full proposal LEVERHULME EU Marie Curie Fellowships NUFFIELD outline proposal BRITISH ACADEMY outline proposal ESRC Small Grant ESRC Postdoc Leverhulme Trust Grant

18 Aspects to consider when writing a Fellowship application Contribution to career development Skills development & advanced training Choice of host institution University commitment / Mentoring arrangements Proposed timetable & methodology Dissemination & networking activities Publication plans Other activities

19 Before you start What do you want to do? Why is it important? Departmental / School fit? Why are YOU the person who should do the research? Who funds that type of research? Are you eligible to apply? When are the deadlines? Who can help? 19

20 Let s get started Study funding source How to write a good application Aims / objectives Regulations Check details Content Why / who? Aims / objectives? Start date Spell check Page limits Signatures Methodology Management Appendices Dissemination / Impact 20

21 Societal and Economic Impact 21

22 Plain English Text size Headings Presentation Justify costs Get advice peer review Prepare draft Allow time How to write a good application Study funding source Aims / objectives Regulations Details Be realistic Value for Content Why / who? Aims / Objectives Methodology Management Dissemination / Impact Check details Start dates Page limits Spell check Signatures Appendices 22

23 Reviewer s Questions Do you understand the summary? Do you understand the significance of what is proposed? Does it engage you? Does it convince you? If not, why not? Does the project work and the deliverables seem realistic/achievable? Or over-ambitious? Do the requested resources seem appropriate for the planned activities? Does it meet the scheme criteria? Do you think it is worthy of funding? If not, what would improve it? 23

24 The Proposal Writing toolkit Rule number 1 Know what you want to do - What inspires you? - What sort of funding do you need to support you at this stage? 24

25 The Proposal Writing toolkit Rule number 2 Know your Funder Always try to find out exactly what the funder or organization expects in a proposal, and do it 25

26 The ten commandments of Proposal Writing 1. Be clear, concise & focused 2. Ask yourself why now & who cares? 3. What is the need? Gap filling 4. Is the solution already available? 5. Address the funder s agenda 6. Address the broader picture (Impact) 7. Sell yourself 8. Use all the resources available to you 9. Sell it in the first two minutes 10. Don t give up! 26

27 Sources of Information ESRC - British Academy - Leverhulme Trust - Nuffield Foundation EC Framework Programme ResearchResearch ESRC How to Write a Good Application - holders/faqs2/index1.aspx

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