EPSRC standard grants

Internal application procedures

Notice of intent: If you have identified a call for proposals to which you wish to respond, contact the Head of Research Facilitation to indicate your intent.

Application processing: Your application will be assigned to members of Research Facilitation, who will review your application and prepare institutional budgets.

Application submission portals: If your application is to be submitted online, provide Research Facilitation with access to your account or application.

Deadlines: A complete first draft of your application should be submitted to Research Facilitation at least three weeks prior to the external deadline (unless an earlier internal deadline has otherwise been identified).

Review process: Your application will be reviewed internally and you will be guided through the application process, which may take several weeks.

Departmental approval: The Head of Research Facilitation will obtain departmental approval for completed applications; this is required prior to submission of applications to Research Services for institutional approval.

Institutional approval: After receiving departmental approval, completed applications are then submitted to Research Services for institutional approval. Research Services require five working days to process applications for institutional approval, which is the last stage before applications are submitted to the funding body.

Standard grant funding applications

Many of the grant applications submitted through the Mathematical Institute occur within the EPSRC research base funding mode, which funds EPSRC standard grants. Below is given a framework for grant applications submitted to the EPSRC, which is largely representative of the research councils.

Applications for EPSRC standard grants can be submitted at any time in the year. The application process (from submission to decision) typically takes up to five months. Once an approval has been issued, there is a short delay before the grant may begin.

EPSRC standard grant applications can include funds for: postdoctoral researchers, travel and subsistence for conference attendance, meetings, and for any named visiting fellows, computing equipment and software. The EPSRC will not provide funds for items not specifically used by the project, and have recently not granted monies for printers and books.

Applications to the EPSRC should contain the following documents:

  • case for support, in two parts (no more than eight sides of A4 in total)
    • part one (up to two sides of A4): previous track record 
    • part two (up to six sides of A4): description of the proposed research and context; programme and methodology;relevance to beneficiaries; plans for dissemination and expoitation of the results; statement on timeliness and novelty of the research
  • diagrammatic work-plan (up to one side of A4)
  • pathways to impact document (up to two sides of A4)
  • justification for the resources requested (up to two sides of A4)
  • curriculum vitae for each named staff or visiting researcher (up to two sides of A4)
  • letter of support from each project partner (no page limit)
  • quotes for equipment items costing more than £25,000 (no page limit).

Steps

  • read and follow funder guidelines
  • for all documents, ensure margins are no less than 2cm, fonts are sans serif and no smaller than 11 point, papersize is A4 and text is ragged-right justified
  • prepare the case for support, justification of resources, and work plan; templates for these will be sent to you email once you have contacted the Head of Research Facilitation, together with example application material
  • create CVs (in the format specified in the checklist) for each of the visiting or named researchers listed in the grant application
  • ensure attachments correspond with the checklist
  • create a Je-S account if you have not already done; all EPSRC applications must be submitted via the Je-S online portal
  • create and fill in a Je-S application, uploading the attachments, created in steps 2 and 3, in pdf format
  • grant viewing and editing rights to your application to the relevant members of Research Facilitation
  • you will be contacted with regard to budget items to be included in the grant application
  • letters of support may only be provided by those listed as project partners in the Je-S application; similarly, each project partner must issue a letter of support.
  • letters of support must be addressed to the applicant, dated, signed, and prepared on headed paper
  • collaborators from within the University of Oxford must provide written permission for their involvement from the relevant Head of Department (or authorised delegate, where applicable); those from elsewhere should write to confirm involvement on the terms set out in the application; email confirmation is acceptable in both cases.

Overseas travel grant applications

These are small proposals (for up to £30,000) requesting funds for travel and subsistence only, to enable a researcher to visit recognised research centres abroad to study new techniques or to develop collaborative relationships. The mathematics programme at the EPSRC operate a fast turn-around (normally within twelve weeks).

After the application is submitted

Application are checked by EPSRC to ensure conformity with guidelines, then sent to reviewers, at least one of whom is recommended by the applicant. Reviewers assess proposals, commenting on the substantive content as well as on timeliness, impact, management, resources and dissemination plans. Reviewer reports are returned to applicants, who are invited to submit a response. Proposals with poor reports are denied funding at this stage; other proposals are assigned to a review panel. At the meeting of the review panel, proposals are discussed and ranked. EPSRC fund from the top of the ranked list to a cut-off point determined by the available funds. Panel dates can be found here.