Applicants should read these terms and conditions carefully alongside the relevant terms and conditions for each award before completing and submitting their application.
The Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE)
As Scotland’s National Academy, the Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE) supports high-quality academic research and public engagement activities. The RSE delivers upon its mission ‘to promote the Advancement of Learning and Useful Knowledge’ by supporting academic researchers, practitioners and policy makers, and in assisting the development, dissemination and deployment of research. The RSE’s Research Awards Programme sits within, and delivers to, this overall mission.
Application process and criteria
Applications must be made through the RSE’s online Content Relationship Management (CRM) system.
The majority of applications require supporting references; applications without a reference where required will not be accepted.
It is possible to submit a revised version of a previous unsuccessful application. If doing so, the applicant needs to articulate clearly the key change(s) made to the application.
Contact detail and letter of support requirements
Head of department contact details: applicants should enter the details of the Head of Department where they are currently employed.
Research office contact: applicants should enter the details of a member of the Research Office at their current place of employment.
Finance office contact: The award money for a successful applicant will be paid to the Scottish HEI, RI or Cultural Institution involved in the application. Applicants should enter the details of a member of the Finance Office at their current place of employment.
Referee details: We ask that the referees are not recent collaborators or members of the applicant’s own institution. In addition, the referees should be from two different institutions. References are not uploaded as part of the application and applicants need to arrange for these to be sent on the correct form to the RSE as per instructions on the RSE’s website. Two references are required for RSE International Awards: Joint Projects, RSE Personal Research Fellowships, RSE Small Research Grants, RSE Research Networks and RSE Research Workshops.
Letters of support
Institutional statement of support: required for RSE International Awards: Joint Projects, RSE Personal Research Fellowships, RSE Small Research Grants, RSE Research Networks and RSE Research Workshops. Institutional letter of support from applicant’s current place of employment – The Institutional Statement of Support should be from the Research Office, stating that they have read the application and agree that if an RSE Award is granted and accepted by the applicant, this institution will be bound by the terms and conditions, will provide the necessary facilities, and will administer the Award.
Host statement of support: required for all RSE International Awards: Joint Projects and RSE Personal Research Fellowships taking place not at the applicant’s current place of employment
Institutional letter of support from host/exchange partner: The Institutional Statement of Support should be from the Research Office OR the relevant Head of Department, stating that they have read the application and agree that if an RSE Award is granted and accepted by the applicant, this institution will be bound by the terms and conditions, will provide the necessary facilities, and will administer the Award where necessary.
Head of department letter of support: required for RSE International Awards: Joint Projects, RSE Personal Research Fellowships, RSE Small Research Grants, RSE Research Networks and RSE Research Workshops. This letter of support should be written by your current Head of Department. We ask that it includes details of the suitability of the applicant, the impact of the proposed package of work, and their support for this. They must also state that they have read the application, agree that if an RSE Award is granted and accepted by the applicant, this institution will be bound by the terms and conditions, will provide the necessary facilities, and will administer the Award.
Statement for collaborators: required if relevant for RSE Small Research Grants, RSE Research Networks and RSE Research Workshops. If the lead applicant is applying with co-applicants then a statement is required to state that they support the application and will be bound by the terms and conditions.
Early Career Researcher (ECR): ECR applicants must be within seven years of the award of their PhD (from the point of successful PhD viva to the point of applying) and be within seven years of their first academic appointment (paid contract of employment which lists research or teaching as the primary role). This terminology takes no account either of an applicant’s age or current status in determining eligibility for this award. Additionally:
- Maternity/paternity/parental/adoption leave after award of PhD of up to 18 months per child is taken into consideration. Please include the time you were away from work on maternity/paternity/adoption leave in the section ‘career history’;
- Documented periods of leave for other reasons, i.e. long-term medical absence, will also be taken into consideration.
Mid-career: academics who are normally within no more than 15 years from the award of their doctorate. This does not include career breaks.
Senior-career: academics who are normally beyond15 years from the award of their doctorate. This terminology takes no account of either an applicant’s age or current status in determining eligibility for this award. This does not include career breaks.
Applications will be assessed by one or more of the RSE’s assessment sub-panels. Interdisciplinary proposals will be reviewed by more than one panel. Applications will be assessed with reference to:
- Quality and importance of the research proposed;
- The feasibility of the proposed research;
- The outputs and impact of the proposed research;
- The track record of the applicant;
- And value for money.
Acceptance of terms and conditions
By signing the application form and accepting any grant offer letter, the host institution and the applicant agree to be bound by the general terms and conditions as well as the grant specific terms and conditions. Both the funder and the RSE shall be entitled to enforce these terms and conditions.
Award acceptance should be completed as requested in the award letter.
The RSE is not liable for any costs incurred before an award is fully accepted.
Payment of grant
The award is paid by the RSE to the host institution which will pay the awardees against the RSE list of approved expenses/eligible costs, based on the amount awarded.
Payment to the institution will be made in arrears on receipt of an invoice, either at interim or final reporting periods.
Payment will be subject to satisfactory performance and adherence to the terms and conditions governing the specific award. A percentage of payment may be withheld from the institution if the award holder fails to meet the requirements of the award described in the terms and conditions, including the meeting and reporting requirements. In accepting the award, the Host Institution is expected to have in place policies covering misconduct together with procedures that would be applied should the award holder fail to abide by them. The RSE adopts the UK Research Integrity Office (www.ukrio.org) Code of Practice. Full Codes of Conduct can be found at https://www.rse.org.uk/codes-of-conduct/
Extension and project changes
The RSE would expect to be consulted on, and informed of any changes to, the proposed project following approval of the application where these changes are likely adversely to affect the research project funded. Failure to consult the RSE about significant changes could result in funding being withdrawn or restricted as to full payment.
If the project has to be cancelled for any reason, the RSE will seek reimbursement of any funds held by the host institution.
It is not possible to carry forward unspent funds beyond the project end-date.
The length of the awards will not be extended for successful candidates who are in part-time posts; the award will remain fixed in line with the period of award approved for funding.
In exceptional circumstances, no-cost extensions may be granted where justified in the submitted extension request form. Please note that a precise new end date will be required. Normally, the RSE offers no-cost extensions on projects ONLY in the following circumstances:
- Staff: maternity, paternity, adoption, shared parental or paid sick leave; bereavement; change of caring responsibilities; extended jury service; changes from full-time to part-time employment
- Non-Staff: major equipment failures; major laboratory/building issue; unforeseen problems with specimen/sample/data collection; unforeseen problems over ethical approval or permits; non-availability of facilities essential to the project.
We will consider requests where they are necessary to enable the objectives of the original award to be completed and where the work can be completed in the additional time awarded. We do not allow no-cost extensions to use unspent funds on work not specified in the original application or additional outputs to be completed; invoices to be received while the grant is live (invoices for spend occurring during the grant duration can be received in period between the end date of the grant and the Final Expenditure Statement due date); attendance at additional conferences unless a case is made for the enhanced impact this would create; extensions to make linked projects finish together.
The maximum length of extension the RSE offers is an additional 25% of the time initially identified for the project.
The RSE’s policy is in line with the UKRI policy on extensions. The RSE reserves the right to request additional evidence in support of any case made for an extension.
Major changes to an awarded project/deviating from the initial objectives must be notified and agreed by the RSE. The reallocation of major funds where reasonable to harness relevant opportunities or counter under- and over-spends must be agreed with the RSE.
All expenses must remain in accordance with our eligible costs; this includes the 10% normal limit on dissemination costs.
Should an award holder move institutions they will need advance approval from RSE to transfer the award. Awards can only be transferred to other eligible institutions. Awards cannot be transferred between individuals/projects.
Awardees are required to submit a final report within three months of the end period. A template report form will be provided.
The report should:
- outline the progress relative to the research programme and outcomes indicated in the original application;
- set out the main research objectives;
- provide a list of all outputs and planned or implemented impact activities, e.g. publications produced (or in progress), conference presentations, collaborations etc.;
- include a non-confidential executive summary.
The RSE should be informed of any publications, further collaborations, funding etc. resulting from the awards. The RSE is pleased to receive copies of publications and reserves the right to seek further follow-up reports where necessary and to seek information from the awardee after the end of the grant for evaluation purposes.
Project reports should be sent to the relevant email inbox, specified in specific terms and conditions.
An award holder may not submit a new application to the RSE until all reporting on previous RSE awards have been submitted to the RSE and approved as satisfactory.
Final financial reporting
Within one month of the completion of the award, the host institution must submit a final statement of expenditure to the RSE. The statement must be on headed paper, detail the amount awarded, the amount spent, and be signed off by a senior member of the award finance team at the host institution. Invoices should be addressed to the RSE and submitted to [email protected] Any unspent funds will be returned to the RSE.
Any additional financial reporting terms and conditions are specified for each Call in separate documentation.
Review of reports
Reports will be sent by the host institution to the RSE Research Awards Team to be checked for accuracy.
Should a report not be submitted by the due date, or if it be deemed incomplete or unsatisfactory, the recipient of the award will be invited either to submit the report within two weeks or to revise the report in line with the assessors’ comments.
If the report is still not forthcoming, or if the RSE Research Awards Team continues to be dissatisfied with the report, the RSE reserves the right to withhold payment of the grant and request refund of payment made. In such circumstances, the RSE Research Awards Team will issue a letter to the head of the institution in which the recipient of the award is based, listing the recipient of the award, and applying the appropriate financial penalty.
Publications, dissemination and evaluation
Any publications or other outputs arising from the research funded by the award would be expected to acknowledge the RSE’s support. There is an ‘expectation’ that any presentation should, where possible, acknowledge RSE funding. The Research Awards Office can provide an institutional logo.
Any events organised must be outwith the RSE’s and Young Academy of Scotland’s own programme of meetings.
The RSE does not make any claim to IPR ownership from grant applications. The IPR generated from the project work under the RSE grant belongs to the host/employing University (depending on the contractual arrangements governing researcher’s work) along with all publication rights.
For evaluation purposes: awardees may be expected, after completion of their period of tenure, to participate in reviews and studies to evaluate the effectiveness and impact of the RSE award. The RSE reserves the right to seek further follow-up reports where necessary and to seek information from the awardee after the end of the grant.
Additional terms and conditions
If a material change in the applicant’s circumstances should occur after submitting the application, details should be notified by email to the Research Awards Team.
RSE Committee members are not permitted to apply for funding from an award scheme for which they serve on the Committee. Committee members who wish to apply should step down from their post first.
Policies for acceptable research conduct
The host institution must have robust safeguarding policies in place to protect vulnerable groups (see Scottish Government’s Protecting Vulnerable Groups Membership Scheme). The host institution must also have in place clear processes which must be followed if it becomes aware of specific incidents, including referral to the relevant authorities where necessary.
The grant must be managed and carried out in compliance with all relevant legal codes of practice including health and safety, ethical guidance, and regulatory requirements.
If a grant involves the use of animals the relevant regulations in the UK Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 and its subsequent amendments must be adhered to.
Appropriate insurance must be provided by the awardees employing/host institution to carry out the research.
Environmental responsibility must be considered and will be reflected upon in the assessment of your application. Your work application and proposed research should demonstrate environmental responsibility, for example, undertaking only necessary travel, low carbon forms of travel, and/or giving consideration to online meetings where possible and appropriate.
Please ensure you are aware of any visa requirements and travel restrictions for research-related visits; if you have not already done so please refer to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) Travel Advice website: www.fco.gov.uk.
Throughout the duration of the funded project, Scottish and UK Government, and appropriate foreign legislation and guidelines for Covid-19 safe contact and travel must be observed.
Please direct enquiries to: [email protected].