MMU Research and Knowledge Exchange Blog

Funding opportunities, news and guidance from RKE at Manchester Metropolitan University

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Horizon 2020 – Faroe Islands join the party


The European Commission have announced that the Faroe Islands have been added to the list of Associated Countries for Horizon 2020. As with other countries with association agreements, this now means that partners from the Faroe Islands can participate on an even footing with EU Member States.

In practical terms this means organisations can participate in and lead proposals on a funded basis and that partners will count towards the minimum requirements for consortia. The decision is applied retrospectively from the start of Horizon 2020, so will apply to any proposals that are currently being reviewed.

A full list of Associated Countries is available here. For more information on funding for non-EU countries in Horizon 2020 take a look at the European Commission’s ‘Open to the World’ publication.


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Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from RKE

Book Christmas TreeRKE would like to wish a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all our subscribers and followers.

Congratulations for all the achievements and accolades 2014 has brought. With all the hard work it’s definitely time to relax and recharge. We will keep you updated with more news, opportunities and announcements in the New Year. See you all in 2015.

Best wishes,

The Research and Knowledge Exchange Office





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Horizon 2020 – Where do Arts & Humanities fit? Information Day


Here at the Blog we are aware that the opportunities within Horizon 2020 can be a little overwhelming, especially the further away your research areas are from technology focused disciplines. This is why we’re pleased to announce that the UK National Contact Points are coming together to hold an Information Day on 18 February 2015 at RCUK HQ in Swindon, which will focus specifically on Arts and Humanities.

Further information about the day and registration details are available here.

The morning will be taken up with presentations on some of the key areas which provide opportunities for researchers in the Arts & Humanities from representatives of ESRC, AHRC, UKRO and others (Ed – if you take a look you can get a sneak preview of some of the proposed presentations). In the afternoon there will also be the opportunity for those of you already considering applications to book one to one sessions with representatives of the UK National Contact Points to get guidance on your application.

We’d recommend you book early if you area interested, and please do let us know if you’re planning to attend (






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Horizon 2020: It’s official – first two projects cross the finish (or should that be starting?) line!

congratulationsAll at the Blog would like to congratulate Prof Bruce Edmonds , Director of the Centre for Policy Modelling (CPM), in the Faculty of Business and Law. He and his team will start work on two Horizon 2020 projects in the New Year. The projects will involve Bruce collaborating with a range of partners across Europe and are MMU’s first official successes of the Horizon 2020 Programme (Ed – we are in discussions on a number of other projects, but we can’t speak about these just yet!).

The first project, DiDIY, will explore the new socio-technological phenomenon of digital do it yourself (DiDIY). It will look at how access to affordable digital creation (e.g. 3D printing of unique-by-design objects or networked smart objects) and open innovation are changing the way in which society operates and the impact that this will have on work, education and research and beyond. The CPM has a key role in integrating the various ideas and evidence that comes out of this project, partly using illustrative social simulations. The project will be led by Universita Carlo Cattaneo Liuc in Italy and will involve partners in Greece, Italy, the Netherlands and UK.

The second project, SAF21, is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie European Training Network, which will help to embed social scientists of the future into EU fisheries management systems. It will train experts in analysis of human social behaviour within a variety of PhD project, looking to better understand the inter-locking complexity of self-organisation, ecology and legal structures in fisheries. It has the ultimate aim of ‘injecting’ those with social science understanding into the fisheries sector and hence to facilitate a more effective and sensitive management of them. The CPM will host two project looking at (a) the role of social norms and inter-organizational trust between fishers and regulators and (b) how visualisation techniques might be used to present the results from complex models in a public context (such as a museum). The project will be led by the Arctic University of Norway and brings together universities, museums, companies and representative organisations from the fishing sector.

Once again, many congratulations to Bruce, and fingers crossed for those of you involved in discussions with the Commission or waiting to hear the outcome of your applications!

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Last chance to book! RKE Social -The Science of Christmas

Science of ChristmasWhen: Friday 19th December, 4-5.30pm

Where: Council Chamber, Ormond Building, All Saints Campus

Why: Hosted by RKE but carrying no formal agenda, this is an informal opportunity for MMU Academic staff to meet colleagues, swap ideas and discuss collaborations.

Loosely themed around this festive time of year, Steve Millington is going to be speaking about his research into Class and Christmas lights and Haleh Moravej will be speaking about seasonal food and Christmas eating and drinking. There will be an honesty bar and a suggestions box – the rest is simply your space, the atmosphere laid back.

I’m there! Book me on! (booking via eventbrite)

If you have an enquiry about the event please email


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ESRC Transformative Research funding call – Internal Expression of Interest


ESRC have announced the next funding call for Transformative Research in Social Sciences.  Due to the highly ambitious nature of this call they are only allowing us to submit two applications.

We are therefore running an internal MMU Expression of Interest call. EOIs should be completed on the form available here:  EOI Transformative 2015  and submitted to Gareth Cantello in RKE, by Friday 19th December 2014.

EOIs will then be reviewed by a panel drawn from Associate Deans of Research, RKE representatives and colleagues who are part of the ESRC Peer Review College. The deadline for the full proposal to the ESRC is 19th February 2015.

Transformative research

For the purpose of this call, the ESRC broadly defines transformative research as involving pioneering theoretical and methodological innovation, the novel application of theory and methods in new contexts, and/or research based on the engagement of unusual disciplinary and interdisciplinary perspectives. The expectation is that the transformative research call will provide a major stimulus to novel developments of social science enquiry and support research activity that attracts an element of risk.

Some of the possible characteristics of transformative research include:

  • Results that will radically change accepted thinking in the social sciences
  • Research that may be high risk but with the possibility of high reward
  • Research that is carried out with the expectation that it will produce a broad base of knowledge and new thinking/insights.

This call therefore specifically encourages applicants to design a research question that is both highly ambitious and creative. Applicants should also consider the potential scientific impact of their research proposal and the potential economic and societal impact. More information can be found on the ESRC Impact Toolkit at:

ESRC priority areas

The transformative idea also needs to address one (or more) of the ESRC’s three priority areas as identified in its Delivery Plan 2011-15. ( These are:

  • Economic performance and sustainable growth
  • Influencing behaviour and informing interventions
  • A vibrant and fair society.

Whilst proposals may include a range of disciplinary approaches, proposals must be at least 50 per cent social science in disciplinary focus. This includes the focus of the research, the principal investigator, and other personnel involved.

Funding and duration

All grants supported under this call will be funded for up to 18 months in duration and must start on 1 January 2016. Proposals will be funded up to £250,000 (at 100 per cent fEC).




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EPSRC: SUPERGEN Wind Challenge 2015


EPSRC invites proposals are invited for collaborative research projects to undertake fundamental research that will underpin the development of Wind Energy technologies. The following themes have been identified as priority areas for the remit of this call:

  • Turbine Component Development
  • Foundation Systems
  • Asset Management
  • Whole-Systems Understanding

For each project application there should be a single submission with a single PI. The institutions involved in the successful proposals will be expected to become members of the SUPERGEN Wind Hub.

Up to £3M is available for this call. The duration of the grants may be up to three years.

Anyone intending to submit a proposal to this call must register their intent by email to by 16:00 on 20 January 2015, including in the email any project partners, names of the PI and any Co-Is, the subject area and an approximate value of funds to be requested. This is not intended to restrict detail in the final submission as changes will be allowed, but will give us an indication of the level of interest and enable the prompt identification of reviewers.

The deadline for applications is 26 February 2015. Full details of the call can be found at the website here.