MMU Research and Knowledge Exchange Blog

Funding opportunities, news and guidance from RKE at Manchester Met


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Horizon 2020 – UKRI Update on continued participation

As the 31 January 2020 approaches, UKRI have published the following statement regarding the UK’s continued access to Horizon 2020 programme, which confirms that once the Withdrawal Agreement is approved we will remain eligible to apply for the duration of the programme:

“UK scientists, researchers and businesses can continue to participate in, bid for and lead projects in the European Union’s (EU) flagship programme Horizon 2020, as if the UK remained a Member State, even after the UK exits the EU on 31 January 2020.

The UK remains the second highest recipient of Horizon 2020 funding for science and innovation and UK organisations are encouraged to continue to bid into calls for grants until the end of the Horizon 2020 programme.

Following the Second Reading in parliament of the Withdrawal Agreement on 20 December, the UK has now stepped down its preparations for leaving the EU without a deal, with confidence that it will ratify the EU Exit deal by 31 January.

The Withdrawal Agreement means that the UK continues to participate in EU Programmes financed by the 2014-2020 Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) until their closure. Horizon 2020 is a Programme funded under the current MFF. UK scientists, researchers and businesses can continue to participate in these programmes and receive EU grant funding for the lifetime of individual projects, including projects finishing after the transition period ends in 2020.

A very limited number of UK Horizon 2020 projects, which involve access to security-related sensitive information restricted for EU Member States, may be unable to continue after EU Exit in their current form. The government expects the European Commission to inform participants if this is the case. Any affected UK grant holders should contact UKRI at EUGrantsFunding@ukri.org. 

The priority continues to be securing the best outcome for UK research and innovation and creating the best possible environment for collaborations and international partnerships to flourish. This includes a mutually beneficial future relationship with the EU in science and innovation.”

(original statement accessible via UKRI website here)

Our participation in the forthcoming Horizon Europe Programme (the successor to Horizon 2020) remains subject to negotiation, and discussions are unlikely to move forward until Member States have agreed the next EU budget for the period 2021-2027.

Our colleagues at UKRO continue to maintain their excellent Brexit factsheet, which provides a useful overview of the current position.

Thinking of applying?

If you are thinking of applying for EU funding, then we’re here to support you. Just get in touch with your International Research Development Manager for help and advice:

Sally Pedley – Arts & Humanities, Business & Law, and Health Psychology & Social Care (Sally.Pedley@mmu.ac.uk)

Margaret Eastcott – Education and Science & Engineering (M.Eastcott@mmu.ac.uk)


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Newton Fund: New Calls Announced – Deadline August 2019

The Newton Fund has announced a range of calls with deadlines in early August. Full details and access to call documents can be found via the Newton Fund website here.

The current range of calls include:

  • Newton Fund Institutional Links (Brazil, Colombia, Egypt, Indonesia, Mexico, Philippines, Thailand, Turkey) – to start and grow collaborations between departments and groups in the UK and partner countries, support exchange of expertise and fund research projects.
  • Newton Fund Researcher Links Workshops (Brazil, China, Jordan, Philippines) – to support coordination of workshops between UK and partner countries.
  • Newton Fund Researcher Links Travel Grants (South Africa and wider Africa) – to support early career researchers (within 10 years of PhD) in partner countries to travel to the UK.
  • Newton Fund Research Environment Links (Turkey, Vietnam) – supporting exchange of best practice and training in areas designed to build capacity in partner countries.

If you are interested in applying to any of these calls, please contact your Research Development Manager.

About the Newton Fund

The Newton Fund is a key initiative in which UK funding bodies including the UK research councils, Innovate UK, British Council and academies and learned societies have partnered with funding agencies in low and middle income countries to support science and innovation partnerships. In some cases these are thematic, addressing a specific challenge area and in others they are more general capacity building activities. In all cases, the key driver is responding to the needs of the partner country and activities need to be ODA compliant (Ed – there are some helpful pointers on the Newton Fund website here, and colleagues in the Research Development Team can help you to think about whether your project ideas fit requirements).

 


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Horizon 2020: Final work programmes published

As some of you may have seen, the Commission have now launched their final update to the 2018-20 work programme. This update contains details of the last calls under Horizon 2020. It will also form a bridge to the next EU framework programme for research and innovation – Horizon Europe.

A further €11bn will be made available through these calls, including support for the Commission’s political priorities in:

  • Low carbon, climate resilient future
  • Circular economy
  • Digitising and transforming European industry and services
  • Security Union

You can access work programmes through the ‘reference documents’ function on the Commission’s Funding and Tenders Portal (Ed – click on ‘Work Programmes’, ‘2018-20’ and then  ‘Main WP’ to access).

UK participation in calls for proposals

As an EU Member State, the UK remains eligible to participate in, and apply for funding from Horizon 2020 until the UK’s date of exit from the EU (currently set at 31 October 2019). After this date, the UK’s status will change and we anticipate that there may be changes to the parts of Horizon 2020 which are open to the UK.

The UK government have committed to underwrite participation in Horizon 2020 through its underwrite guarantee, and following our exit through an extension to this guarantee which will support successful projects where we are still eligible to apply.

Where to get support

If you are thinking of getting involved in Horizon 2020, or would like more information please don’t hesitate to contact us. Details of the appropriate person to contact can be found below:


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MSCA Individual Fellowships – funding available to support talented researchers

The 2019 call for Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions Individual Fellowships (MSCA IF) is now open, with a deadline of 11 September 2019.

As regular readers of the Blog will be aware, this is a prestigious scheme which provides the opportunity to bring talented post-doctoral researchers (or those with equivalent research experience) to Manchester Met to undertake a programme of research and personal development. Typical fellowships will last for 24 months, and there are options to support those returning to research after a period away, as well as those returning to the EU to re-establish their research careers in EU organisations.

Researchers are able to develop their programme of research in any field, and fellowships can also provide an opportunity to experience life outside academia, with secondments in industry, the public sector or charitable organisations all possible.

The Guide for Applicants for the call is available here, and is essential reading for anyone wishing to apply.

Early notification

In order to ensure that we can give you the best support for your MSCA IF applications, we are asking for colleagues to notify RKE as soon as possible if you have a prospective fellowship (euro_res@mmu.ac.uk).

National Contact Point Information Events

As part of their role as National Contact Point for the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, our colleagues at UK Research Office will be organising two information events:

  • 29 May 2019 in London
  • 13 June 2019 in Newcastle

Events are free, but registration is mandatory – details will appear on UKRO’s website over the coming weeks.


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GCRF – New Calls from British Academy

ba logo smallThe British Academy have announced two more competitive research calls supported through the Global Challenges Research Fund with a deadline of 22 May 2019. As with all GCRF funded projects, activities must be ODA-eligible, focusing on addressing challenges faced by countries in receipt of Official Development Assistance.

  • Urban Infrastructures of Well-Being – focusing on addressing the challenges of generating and maintaining well-being in the context of rapid urbanisation and infrastructure development. This call requires at least one researcher from the social sciences and humanities and one researcher from the engineering sciences.

 

  • Heritage, Dignity and Violence – focusing on projects that will deepen the understanding of the relevance and importance of the historical context of development, culture(s) and heritage(s), in promoting sustainable peace and preventing violence.

In both cases, PIs must be based in the UK, but collaborations are encouraged with partners in countries in receipt of Official Development Assistance, and applications are expected to demonstrate equitable international collaboration.

Projects must be 21 months in duration, starting 9 September 2019, and the maximum size of project is £300,000.

You can find out more about the calls via the links above, and if you are interested in applying please contact your Research Development Manager for support and guidance.

 


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Horizon 2020: Upcoming Info Days

save the date

As we head towards the final year of Horizon 2020, our colleagues at UKRO have helpfully compiled a list of the events which have been announced to date. These events, which are organised by the European Commission, its Executive Agencies and the networks of Horizon 2020 National Contact Points will provide details of upcoming calls.

Events announced so far:

Societal Challenge 1 Info Day and Health Partnering Day 2019 – 3-4 July 2019, Brussels (Save the Date)

Societal Challenge 2 Info Day 2020 and brokerage event – 3-4 July 2019, Brussels

Energy Info Days – 25-27 June 2019, Brussels (Save the Date)

ICT Proposers’ Day 2019 – 19-20 September 2019, Helsinki (Save the Date) – details will appear on the IDEAL-IST website

UK Participation in Horizon 2020

In the event of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit, the UK will continue to be eligible to participate in all parts of Horizon 2020 open to Third Country participation. In the case of the events highlighted above, the UK will still be eligible to participate in consortia and the UK Government has agreed to provide financial support to projects that are successful.

As ever, if you are thinking of applying for Horizon 2020 funding, or would like further information, please get in touch (euro_res@mmu.ac.uk)


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GCRF: Update on Collective Programme calls and Regional Engagement Events

As flagged on the Blog, UKRI are starting to announce details of calls from for their Collective Programme. New details have been added for calls here – with the majority being led via AHRC and ESRC.  Calls that are open, or scheduled to open in January, include:

If you are thinking about submitting to any of the calls, or have been invited to participate in projects led by other organisations, please contact your Research Development Manager as soon as possible for guidance and support.

UKRI Regional Engagement Events

To complement the calls and provide an opportunity to hear more about GCRF, UKRI are arranging a series of engagement events – further details here.

From UKRI’s website:

“UKRI are developing a programme of UK based GCRF engagement events which will take place January-March 2019.  These events provide a timely opportunity to engage with the GCRF Challenge Leaders, for UKRI to provide an update on live and upcoming ODA calls/activities, and to discuss key topics e.g. interdisciplinary approaches, building equitable partnerships, and maximising impact.

These events are open to anyone with an interest in the GCRF and development research opportunities.”

We would encourage those of you who have an interest in any of the calls, or GCRF more broadly, to consider attending these events.