Partnership between the new investigator and their host research organisation (RO) is essential, which recognises the importance of the host’s commitment to developing individuals at this early career stage.
A signed statement of support demonstrating this commitment (maximum of two pages) written by the Head of Department or other senior manager, on headed paper, must be attached to all applications, clearly detailing:
- why the RO considers the applicant a suitable candidate for a NIRG award, including, but not limited to:
- the applicant’s career stage
- prior funding
- research experience
- leadership potential
- evidence that the applicant is recognised and valued as an essential member of staff and is integrated into the RO and the host department, whilst ensuring they can develop their independence and the individual focus of their research
- a named senior academic (not the applicant’s supervisor or current group leader) to act as a mentor. The statement of support should detail what this mentorship entails including, but not limited to:
- guidance and training on setting up a research group, writing funding applications, building partnerships and collaborations, developing patient and public involvement and engagement activities
- advice to enable future career transitions
- details of how the non-NIRG time will be supported and how NIRG time will be protected, including:
- a financial commitment from the RO to support at least 50% of the applicant’s salary
- details of any support provided for any teaching or administrative duties that the applicant undertakes
- what support the RO will provide for the applicant. The description of support provided must include provision of adequate laboratory space. But it may also include investment in the equipment necessary to establish the applicant’s laboratory and access to communal departmental resource such as:
- access to PhD and project students
- technical support
- administrative support.
The package should be tailored to the applicant’s individual requirements.
- what access the applicant will have to career development support and what support, including financial support and, or, teaching buyout, the RO will provide for any proposed leadership activities or external career development activities undertaken by the applicant
- a description of long-term plans to integrate the applicant into the host department and how the RO will support the applicant following the end of the award. This should cover (but not be limited to) career support, salary support and support for the continuation of the applicant’s research following the end of the NIRG award
- details of any internal assessment or peer review of the application prior to submission
- generic comments should be avoided.
We won’t assess applications that are submitted without a signed statement of support.
Administrative authorities have responsibility for ensuring that the salaries and resources cited in the proposals are sufficient to undertake the proposed research, to attract sufficiently experienced and skilled staff, and represent good value for money. The salary requested should be in line with the level the RO would provide were the new investigator appointed within the RO’s own pay structure.