2. What to include in your application - MRC


2.1 The proposal form

The proposal form provides a summary of the whole project.

The main headings include the following (further guidance is available through the Je-S help text provided for each section):

  • organisation where the grant should be held – this should be the lead Research Organisation responsible for administering the grant
  • project title – this should be no more than 150 characters and reflect the aim of the project
  • start date and duration – the anticipated start date should be realistic and would normally be between one month and six months after the date of the decision-making board or panel. Please refer to call guidance as this may vary. The duration of a grant will typically be from 12 to 60 months. It should reflect the work to be undertaken and may be restricted/specified in the call/scheme guidance. Once a grant has been issued, grant holders are required to make every effort to start on the agreed date. The start of the grant may be delayed by up to 3 months from the start date shown in the offer letter, the duration of the grant remaining unchanged. The grant may lapse if it is not started within this period.
  • applicants – this should include the Principal Investigators and all Co-Investigators involved in the project
  • objectives – what is the project aiming to achieve? The objectives of the proposed project should be listed in order of priority and should be those that the investigators would wish the MRC to use as the basis for evaluation of work upon completion of any grant awarded
  • summary – a plain English (layman’s) summary of the proposed work, explaining the context of the aims and objectives of the research, and
    the potential applications and benefits. Official Development Assistance (ODA) transparency and reporting. As part of the government’s commitment to ODA transparency and in line with DfID ODA reporting requirements, UKRI is responsible for publishing information about UKRI ODA grants including project titles and summaries via the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) registry and via DfID’s national statistics. The purpose of publishing information via the IATI registry is to make information about ODA easily accessible to governments, stakeholders and other relevant groups in beneficiary countries. All UKRI funded projects from this programme will be published in this way. Please therefore write your project title and summary in such a way that they are meaningful and accessible to non-specialist audiences, following publication. We would be grateful if you would ensure that the project title and summary are written in plain English and avoid the use of jargon, acronyms, puns and plays on words. Please also make clear in your project title and summary how your project is ODA compliant, for example by identifying the development challenges being addressed, the aims of the project and the beneficiary countries
  • technical summary – a more in-depth summary aimed at reviewers who have some knowledge of the area of science involved
  • academic beneficiaries – how will the research benefit other researchers in the field? Identify whether there are any academic beneficiaries in other disciplines and if so, how they will benefit? What will be done to ensure they benefit?
  • communication plan – this should include potential impacts for academic and non-academic users. The MRC attaches great importance to the communication of research findings both within and beyond the academic community
  • summary of resources required for the project – staffing, equipment and other resources required to carry out the project
  • other support – support on current projects from other sources. Applicants will often be already holding grants from the MRC and other funding bodies for research related to the topic for which new funds are being sought. Applicants must declare any relevant financial support which has been awarded or applied for. This should also include any funding that has been obtained or requested for any aspect of the project currently being applied for within the same research field during the past three years
  • technical and ethical considerations – please complete each of these sections with the required information by ticking the appropriate boxes.

The summary and technical summary, including your name and institution, will be published on publicly available sites should the project be funded. Please ensure confidential information is not included in these summaries. If you do include information on the use of animals, please be aware that this information will be freely available to all external users.

Last updated: 18 August 2022

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