Scope of scheme
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) provides funding to procure new equipment through multiple routes, to enable researchers to access the equipment they require to deliver high quality research.
EPSRC can also provide support to improve access to existing equipment in order to maximise its usage. We welcome approaches to enable the better sharing of existing capital equipment through the resource-only strategic equipment scheme.
It is expected that awards will provide seed or invest-to-save funding to initiate increased use and sustainability of the equipment.
It is not expected that more funding through this specific route will be needed after the first application. Clear plans for sustainability must be articulated in the proposal.
Further applications to support sharing of the same item or items of equipment will not be accepted.
The equipment may be funded by EPSRC but could also have been entirely funded from other sources. However the research enabled by the equipment must be within the EPSRC remit. Proposals for this type of support will be assessed alongside proposals for items of equipment and using similar assessment criteria.
Applications must be invited by the relevant EPSRC theme lead. Applications that have not been pre-approved will be rejected.
A two-page outline proposal can be submitted to EPSRC at any time through the Joint Electronic Submission (Je-S) system. The outline proposals are batched and then assessed against the published assessment criteria by the internal EPSRC outline panel. The outline panel meets about three times a year.
EPSRC either invites a full proposal as a separate proposal through Je-S or does not invite a full proposal. Successful applicants will have at least seven weeks to prepare their application.
Full proposal stage
Full proposals are assessed by a postal peer review stage. Unsupportive reviews may lead to the proposal being rejected prior to the panel. If supportive reviews are received these are shared with the applicant and the applicant can provide a two-page Principal Investigator (PI) response.
Interviews with the external strategic equipment panel are held up to three times a year. The strategic equipment panel provides a rank-ordered list based on the published assessment criteria and advises on whether the equipment should be funded.
The process from submission of an outline through to a decision on a full application takes approximately eight to nine months.