The partnership grant scheme is designed to support novel partnerships between diverse groupings of researchers. Funding will be provided to establish new, high-value collaborative activities or capabilities that should add value to high-quality scientific programmes that are already supported by grants from the MRC and other funders. It is not designed to fund standalone, hypothesis-driven research projects, which may otherwise be eligible for MRC research or programme grant type funding.
Collaborative activities can include:
- networking and partnership activities – establishing multidisciplinary collaborative partnerships or consortia; fostering or enabling a national or international strategy across the field; enabling knowledge sharing or creation across institutions
- infrastructure support for establishing a unique shared resource or helping to exploit it, for example staff, systems, equipment, seminars, workshops. This could include a coordinated set of needs-led and complementary networking activities, including outreach work and travel, with a defined output
- platform activities such as specialist data and software platforms or resources
- training, career development and capacity building in strategically important areas
- funds to support small scale, pump-priming projects may be considered but specific research questions should not be the focus of the partnership. These projects should be interdisciplinary, high risk or gain projects which will demonstrate the novel capability of a new partnership.
Typically, successful partnership grants include a combination of these components. Applications for funding to support only networking activities will be rejected. Please refer to the partnership grant case studies as exemplars of successful grants.
Partnership grants are expected to reach maturity by the end of the initial award, with any follow-on activities supported through alternative mechanisms.