How to submit your proposal - ESRC


Resubmissions policy

We do not allow the resubmission of any previously unsuccessful proposals (including proposals previously submitted to another research council), unless you have been explicitly invited to resubmit.  In such circumstances, where there is compelling evidence from peer review, we may exceptionally invite a small number of resubmissions following advice from the grant assessment panels (GAPs), or equivalent.

We have introduced this policy as part of a set of demand management measures, to help alleviate pressure on all involved in our peer review process. The number of proposals received by the research councils has rapidly increased. The level of demand is putting huge pressure on the peer review system, including reviewers and panels. Using the peer review process to improve proposals through multiple resubmissions puts further pressure on our pool of reviewers.

We expect all proposals entering the peer review process to have been carefully planned and written by applicants and quality assured by institutions, so that when they are submitted they are highly competitive, with a genuine prospect of being funded. This policy will promote high-quality peer review for each proposal, which will in turn be of benefit to applicants, reviewers, panels, and the community as a whole.

The definition of a resubmission is “any proposal (including an outline) that has been previously submitted to ESRC through any kind of funding scheme, including calls for proposals and open-date responsive mode. If you apply through a call and your proposal is not funded, you cannot resubmit it in responsive mode (or vice versa) unless explicitly invited to do so.”

If you submit a proposal to another research council and it is judged to be out of their remit before undergoing peer review, you can submit it to ESRC if it is within our remit.  However if your proposal to another research council has been through the peer review process and was not funded you may not resubmit it to ESRC, unless explicitly invited to do so.

The purpose of our invitation-only policy is to allow the modification and/or further development and improvement of proposals that have the potential to be highly competitive and which have a genuine prospect of being funded. There is no guarantee that a resubmitted proposal will be successful, as it will be in competition with a new set of proposals. We will, however, look to invite some reviewers and assessors who commented on the previously submitted proposal.

Where a resubmission is invited, a covering letter summarising the major revisions must accompany the proposal. If you are resubmitting a proposal following an invitation to do so, you must complete a new submission through the Joint Electronic Submission (Je-S) system  and you should identify your application as an invited resubmission using the appropriate tick-box.

Proposals identified by us as uninvited resubmissions will not be processed. These will be classified as unsuccessful on quality grounds in data provided to the research organisation as part of our demand management strategy.

Last updated: 17 August 2021

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