To find funding for your idea:
- use a funding opportunities database tool that covers all disciplines from a wide range of sponsors in the UK and overseas – researchprofessional.com
- identify the main sources of funding for your subject area and get details of any deadlines, application processes and funder requirements.
University staff are successful in attracting funding from a wide range of funders that we have worked with before and also funders that are new to us. The funders we work with correspond to five broad categories of funding sources and they have different types of funding programmes
- Research councils
There are 7 councils associated with Research Council UK, funded by the government to support quality research on national priorities.
There are a wide range of learned societies, charities and trusts who fund research that supports their charitable objectives. Wellcome and other UK medical charities fund significant amounts of research in UK Universities. The University also receives funding from a growing range of charities outside of the UK.
- Government and public sector
Many government departments and agencies have budgets for commissioning research, with the aim of supporting & informing government policies, providing scientific foresight and helping to identify future policy options.
- European Commission
The Commission funds research primarily through its Framework Programmes for Research and Innovation.
- Industry and business
Various companies fund research projects that fit with their commercial objectives. The University has research contracts with companies based in the UK, Europe and some outside of Europe.
For the funders that you are relevant to you, the funding they have available will relate either to:
- fairly broad policy/mission statements where they invite any quality proposals in their area, either to specified deadlines or with no deadlines - Responsive mode
- clearly defined objectives, with tightly defined research programmes which have specific deadlines – Directed mode
Both modes are highly competitive and review processes will focus on the quality of the application. However, for directed calls you should also:
Identify, and be sure you understand, the objectives of the overall programme
- Decide whether the objectives of your particular project fit within that programme, or if necessary whether you would be compromising your research if you adjusted it slightly to fit within the programme
- Evaluate the interest and importance of your project as it is likely to be seen within that programme
a) Evaluate your project as it might appear to interested groups, eg consider whether your possible findings might have implications for policy or practice which would be of interest to government, professional, international agencies; does it have potential to benefit the priority groups on which certain a charity focuses?
- Be fully aware of the application and assessment procedures and be sure that you can afford the time involved in preparing a good proposal tailored to the specifications
- Be sure that any tailoring required keeps the project consistent with the broad outlines of your own personal research interests