Funding opportunity

Funding opportunity: Ecological consequences of offshore wind

Apply for funding to research UK marine ecosystems. You will investigate:

  • how ecosystems respond to offshore wind-power infrastructure
  • better approaches to marine environmental restoration.

You must be:

  • from an eligible UK research organisation
  • eligible for NERC funding.

You must address all these research areas:

  • observing species interactions, population dynamics and viability
  • enhancing marine observations
  • informing marine policy and management solutions.

The full economic cost of your project can be up to £2.5 million. NERC and The Crown Estate will fund 80% of the full economic cost.

Who can apply

Normal individual eligibility applies as described in section C of the NERC research grant and fellowships handbook.

Grants can be held at:

  • approved UK higher education institutes (HEIs)
  • approved research institutes
  • independent research organisations (IROs)
  • public sector research establishments (PSREs).

Check whether your organisation is eligible for funding.

Applicants may be involved in no more than two proposals submitted to this funding opportunity and only one of these may be as the lead principal investigator. Only those applicants invited to submit full proposals, after the assessment of outline proposals, may do so.

NERC values equality, diversity, and inclusion across all its funding programmes, and actively encourages proposals from diverse groups of researchers including early-career researchers. Therefore, NERC and The Crown Estate encourage all ECOWind proposals to be from diverse groups of researchers that include early career researchers.

Proposals are expected to include a significant proportion of researchers from institutions that were not eligible to lead bids to the aligned Offshore Wind Evidence and Change (OWEC) programme. This is because ECOWind is designed to draw in the wider academic community to address the science challenges arising from the planned large-scale expansion of offshore wind in the next decade.

See the OWEC programme steering group list for OWEC eligible lead organisations (PDF, 400KB).

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology (such as screen readers). If you need a version of this document in a more accessible format, please email ecowind@nerc.ukri.org.

Collaboration

Proposals should include a high degree of collaboration across different disciplines and different research organisations. Collaboration with overseas researchers is encouraged where applicants can demonstrate that it will add value to the overall outcomes of the ECOWind research programme.

Partnering with stakeholders

Proposals are expected to collaborate with stakeholders (for example policy, regulatory or industry). This is to ensure that the outcomes of research are designed to provide the evidence needed to support stakeholders.

Where possible, applicants should also make every effort to build partner activity with stakeholders to:

  • add value to existing investments
  • align with ongoing activity
  • make use of partner knowledge and expertise.

Applicants should consider where, in cooperation with these stakeholders, project partnership can add value to their proposals through cash, in-kind contributions, or both. Information on these partnership contributions should be clearly outlined within proposals.

Stakeholders that have already approached us

A number of stakeholders have already indicated in advance a desire to partner or collaborate with applicants to this ECOWind funding opportunity. Read the responses from stakeholders interested in partnering (PDF, 295KB).

Read the Defra, Marine Scotland and Welsh Government statements on their policy priorities (PDF, 126KB).

These files may not be suitable for users of assistive technology (such as screen readers). If you need versions of these documents in a more accessible format, please email ecowind@nerc.ukri.org.

Please note, at the outline bid stage applicants are strongly encouraged to use the information provided by these potential partners and policy stakeholders in the design of their outline bid proposals, and not make any direct contact with these organisations.

At the full proposal stage, connections with these stakeholders will be facilitated by the ECOWind Champion (see additional information).

Applicants may however wish to approach directly, at the outline or full proposal stage, any other potential stakeholders that are not included in the information provided in this call.

What we're looking for

The UK is committed to delivering net zero through significant expansion of offshore wind and to achieving Good Environmental Status (GES) for UK seas by 2021, a target likely to be missed.

We need to understand ecosystem responses to the cumulative pressures of a large increase in deployment of offshore wind, in combination with other anthropogenic stressors, and how this will influence progress towards GES. This requires new scientific approaches that advance our understanding of the dynamics of marine ecosystems.

The Ecological Consequences of Offshore Wind (ECOwind) research programme aims to address a critical gap in understanding how marine ecosystems will respond to the planned large-scale expansion of UK offshore wind infrastructure.

The critical gap in understanding was identified in the findings of the House of Lords Committee’s ‘North Sea energy and ecology’ review, communicated in a letter to the Secretary of State BEIS on 23rd March 2021.

The programme will provide evidence to inform marine policy and management of increasing pressures on UK marine ecosystems from a combination of:

  • offshore wind
  • other anthropogenic stressors (for example oil and gas, aquaculture, and fishing)
  • the environmental response to climate change (for example deoxygenation and rising sea temperatures) and ocean acidification.

The programme’s two priority research challenges are:

  • how will the expansion of offshore wind, combined with other anthropogenic pressures (including the environmental response to climate change and ocean acidification) affect species interactions and the functioning of UK marine ecosystems?
  • how can understanding these ecological consequences inform the development of robust approaches to marine environmental recovery and net environmental gain?

Incorporating both observational and predictive approaches will be required to develop our capacity to predict ecosystem change and to refine policy responses over time. Expertise needs to be combined across marine science disciplines to develop new ways of understanding effects at spatial and temporal scales that are relevant for populations of key species.

Three research areas

Proposals must respond to these challenges by addressing all three of the programme’s research areas:

  • observing inter-species interactions, population dynamics and viability
  • enhancing marine observations
  • informing marine policy and management solutions.

These areas are described in detail below.

In addressing these three areas, the greater proportion of funding within each project will go towards areas one and two, which involve developing predictive and observational techniques.

Area three is focused on informing decision-making and the implementation of emerging policy concepts.

Different observational and predictive approaches will be suited to different species, scales and geographical areas, and for different outputs.

In addressing all three of the programme’s research areas, proposals will need to make significant contributions towards delivering the expected outcomes of this research programme, which are to:

  • enhance understanding of ecosystem responses to the cumulative pressures of large-scale deployment of offshore wind, in combination with other stressors
  • provide a sound evidence base to inform decision-making for managing human activity and policy prioritisation associated with the delivery of an expansion of offshore wind
  • demonstrate research advances in using the latest innovative technologies for integrated marine observing approaches to inform and support better understanding of delivering net environmental gain
  • provide a sound evidence base to inform policy and marine management responses for delivering net environmental gain whilst deploying fixed or floating offshore wind
  • develop long-term relationships between UKRI researchers, government and industry, built around:
    • rigorous applied research
    • long-term data management and archiving.

Area one: understanding species interactions, population dynamics and viability

How are inter-species interactions affected by offshore wind and what are the potential consequences for key species population dynamics and viability?

Research in this area is focused on investigating and modelling the effects of offshore wind and other pressures on ecosystems, including the interactions:

  • between species
  • across trophic levels.

This considers the effects on marine food webs arising from the construction, operation, maintenance and decommissioning of offshore wind farm infrastructure, including:

  • inter-species interactions
  • predator-prey dynamics.

Effects on prey species and supporting habitats have the potential to significantly change predator behaviour and possibly influence competition between key species. These interactions and effects need to be understood, including both positive and negative effects, and their relative importance.

The long-term resilience of populations to pressures from offshore wind deployment, such as mortality from wind turbine collision or the creation of new habitats that may influence biodiversity and ecosystem functioning, is currently uncertain.

This is due to a lack of knowledge of effects at the temporal and spatial scales of populations, particularly of mobile species of birds, marine mammals and fish. This is compounded by uncertainty around the effects of climate change and ocean acidification, which is also driving population changes, and which also needs to be considered.

Understanding the potential for offshore wind to alter predator-prey dynamics and the implications for ecosystem functioning requires predictive approaches. Data collection and modelling on the distribution, behavioural ecology and population dynamics of key species will be required.

The aim is to determine how the long-term (approximately 30 year) viability or proliferation of populations may be affected by offshore wind infrastructure. Combining innovative modelling approaches and empirical data collection will enhance our understanding of ecosystem processes and the effectiveness of measures to protect, restore and enhance populations.

The key species addressed in each project should consider those most at risk, including those in decline, as well as species that are critical for ecosystem function at different trophic levels (for example prey species and the mechanisms that drive their spatial and temporal population dynamics). Where possible, work should be underpinned by close working with offshore wind operators.

The key species are listed in the OWEC review of priority evidence needs around the impact of offshore wind development on key receptors and research underway.

Area two: enhancing marine observations

How can marine observations be enhanced through innovative technologies to inform our understanding of the ecological consequences of offshore wind infrastructure on UK marine ecosystems?

Research in this area is focused on using and developing innovative technologies to observe processes and detect change in ecosystem functioning across relevant spatial and temporal scales.

This makes it possible to assess actual effects of offshore wind deployment on the populations of key species in the context of other stressors. In support of area one, the innovative technologies include:

  • innovative data collection technologies (for example, robotics, autonomous systems and artificial intelligence)
  • robust data sharing platforms to enable access and collaboration.

Research must focus on how to use these innovative technologies to:

  • collect data more effectively
  • test predictions and modelling in area one
  • measure ecosystem change and refine approaches over time
  • ensure relevance and accessibility for wider use.

Consideration should be given to scales of collection for ease of collaboration. For example, the simultaneous sampling of other parameters at the same spatial and temporal scales rather than focusing solely on a species or a trophic level.

The design of observation techniques must include:

  • robust feedback loops and iteration between data collection
  • analysis
  • increased understanding of ecosystem functioning and modelling approaches
  • the refinement of observational programmes.

Area three: informing marine policy and management solutions

How can an improved understanding of potential changes in marine ecosystems developed through areas one and two be used to inform marine policy and management solutions, including implementing net environmental gain and marine environmental recovery?

Research may include interdisciplinary approaches where appropriate, to understand benefits and disbenefits, and to inform policy and management.

Research in this area is focused on incorporating the evidence developed through areas one and two into the development and implementation of current, and emerging, policy and management. This includes:

  • addressing net environmental gain
  • promoting marine environmental recovery.

This will require integrated and cross-cutting approaches to measuring and understanding relative benefits and disbenefits of marine activities, across a range of metrics. This will allow us to:

  • coherently make progress in understanding implications for biodiversity in the context of climate change
  • inform management.

An assessment framework would benefit from the ability to derive and translate population changes into comparative values that can represent biodiversity impacts (habitats and species) across a range of metrics. This can include:

  • natural (for example, the Biodiversity Metric 3.0 and blue carbon)
  • economic (for example, levelised cost of energy, gross value added)
  • societal (ecosystems services).

Bioeconomic modelling is required to understand how change in species populations might affect other economic activity. The natural metrics developed should be relevant across trophic levels to inform:

  • understanding of ecosystem resilience
  • a balanced approach to the sustainable management of human activity.

Addressing net environmental gain and restoration requires understanding of the balance between positive and negative changes for both habitats and species caused by offshore windfarm development with other anthropogenic pressures. This includes integrating understanding of effects at the scale of individual wind farms into strategic approaches which:

  • consider the larger spatial distribution (and temporal pattern) of populations
  • inform actions to ensure biodiversity net gain, including:
    • mitigation
    • enhancement
    • restoration.

UK national marine waters

Proposals should primarily focus on UK national marine waters so that findings are most relevant for UK policy development and marine spatial planning, as well as building on existing UK-wide government and industry-funded activities and partnerships.

‘UK marine waters’ is defined as the broad marine habitat that covers all UK areas that are either permanently immersed in seawater or are inundated with saline water at some stage in the tidal cycle.

This includes:

  • estuaries
  • beaches
  • coasts
  • all subtidal habitats out to the 200 nautical mile limit of the UK’s marine area (within the UK’s Exclusive Economic Zone).

However, we recognise the need to understand consequences at a population-level and the dynamic nature of marine ecosystems. Therefore, applicants are encouraged to include international collaborations where these can be demonstrated to add value to the outcomes of the ECOWind research programme.

Applicants should ensure that they are aware of all relevant previous and current research to avoid duplication and ensure that their proposal is focused on delivering leading edge research.

Proposed research should take advantage of innovative observational and predictive approaches to better understand the functioning of the UK marine ecosystems within which large-scale offshore wind deployment is situated. The Offshore Wind Environmental Evidence Register on The Crown Estate’s Marine Data Exchange provides information on recently identified key evidence gaps concerning offshore wind environmental impacts on:

  • seabirds
  • marine mammals
  • the benthic environment.

Read about the current projects in the Offshore Wind Evidence and Change programme (PDF, 666KB)

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology (such as screen readers). If you need a version of this document in a more accessible format, please email ecowind@nerc.ukri.org.

Other relevant research projects and mapping activity (for example, ScotMer Evidence Maps) is referenced in the supplementary information section.

Check existing and proposed research on the Offshore Wind Environmental Evidence Register.

Outcomes

Proposals are required to include a section that clearly outlines the intended outcomes of the project. This should include how the proposal will:

  • make significant contributions towards delivering the expected outcomes of this research programme (outlined in ‘three research areas’ above)
  • benefit stakeholders (including policy, regulatory, industry).

NERC services and facilities

Proposals should include formal requests (and access costs) for NERC services and facilities (for example, HPC or isotope analyses) where relevant.

No additional funding is available to cover NERC services and facilities costs. Therefore all costs associated with the use of NERC services and facilities (including any costs of the National Marine Facilities (NMF)) must be included within:

  • the funding limit of proposals
  • the directly incurred other costs of proposals.

The NERC funding contribution for proposed projects will be at 80% of FEC with the exception of NMF support costs which will be paid at 100% and must be included within the £2 million funding limit. For example, if the NMF costs for supporting proposed ECOWind research are £400,000, then only £1.6 million will be available to cover the 80% FEC costs of the proposed project.

Prior to submitting a proposal, applicants wishing to use a NERC service or facility must contact the facility to seek agreement that they could provide the service required.

Applicants wishing to use most NERC facilities will need to submit a mandatory ‘technical assessment’ with their proposal. This technical assessment is required for aircraft but not for NERC marine facilities and high-performance computing (HPC). For NERC, this means a quote for the work which the facility will provide.

A full list of the facilities requiring this quote can be found on the NERC website. Further information on NERC services and facilities can be found on the NERC website.

Data management

For NERC-relevant data the NERC data policy must be adhered to, and proposals must develop an outline data management plan. NERC will pay the data centre directly on behalf of the programme for archival and curation services. However, applicants should ensure they request sufficient resource to cover preparation of data for archiving by the research team.

Read NERC’s data policy.

In addition to adhering to the NERC data policy, data submitted to the relevant NERC Environmental Data Exchange will be made available to The Crown Estate’s Marine Data Service after the embargo period.

As the expansion of offshore wind is taking place on a quick timescale, the embargo period for the ECOWind programme will be one year, to ensure that new data is available as soon as possible.

Read NERC’s guidance on preparing an outline data management plan.

Data initiative

The ECOWind programme will be supported by a data initiative that will provide researchers with free access to data that will significantly enhance the outcomes of funded research projects. This initiative will leverage ongoing activities, such as Defra’s Offshore Wind Enabling Actions (OWEA) big data project, The Crown Estate-funded Marine Data Exchange and the NERC INSITE data initiative, to meet its two objectives for this research programme:

  • secure access to relevant OWEC and other government funded data, and industry-owned data, which will add significant value to research projects
  • provide additional fieldwork opportunities for research projects to collect new data through access to:
    • industry sampling or survey equipment (for example, remotely operated vehicles)
    • vessels
    • offshore installations.

In addition, the data initiative will develop long-term data products that will be useful to both industry and the UKRI science community beyond the end of the research programme.

More information on the opportunities arising from the data initiative will be provided during the delivery of the programme and it is anticipated that some initial information will be made available in early 2022 to applicants who have been invited to submit full proposals.

Funding available

Proposals can bid for up to £2.5 million at full economic cost for a duration of up to 48 months. NERC will provide funding at 80% of full economic cost to awarded ECOWind projects (in other words, NERC will award grants with a budget of up to £2 million). Grants must start no later than 9 August 2022.

In exception, NMF support costs will be paid at 100% and must be included within the £2 million funding limit. For example, if the NMF costs for supporting proposed ECOWind research are £400,000, then only £1.6 million will be available to cover the 80% of full economic cost of the proposed project.

Proposals are required to address all three of the ECOWind programme’s research areas, with the greater proportion of the requested funding going towards research in areas one and two.

The ECOWind programme will fund three proposals that provide a balanced portfolio of projects addressing different key species. Funded proposals will have a distinct focus on the interactions around different populations of:

  • key species, such as:
    • sea birds
    • marine mammals
    • benthic communities
  • species that are critical for ecosystem function at different trophic levels, for example prey species, such as:
    • sand eel
    • herring.

Attendance at Programme Advisory Group (PAG) meetings to assess progress will be a requirement for project teams twice a year. At least one of these meetings will be held virtually.

The travel and subsistence costs for up to three members of each project team to attend any in person meetings with the PAG will be funded by NERC and so these costs should not be included in the costs of ECOWind proposals.

How to apply

Outline proposals

Closing date: 25 November 2021

Applicants must submit an outline proposal. The outline proposal stage will be used to identify proposals that will be invited to submit a full proposal.

One outline proposal submission is required for each proposed project. This should be submitted by the lead principal investigator and cover all components.

You must submit your outline proposal through the Joint Electronic Submission system (Je-S). When applying select:

  • NERC
  • document type: outline
  • scheme: NERC outline
  • call: ECOWind Outlines NOV21

Applicants must ensure that their outline proposal is received by NERC by 16:00 on the closing date. Any proposal that is received after the closing date, is incomplete, or does not meet the eligibility criteria of this funding opportunity, will be returned to the applicant and will not be considered.

The outline proposal form should include the expected co-investigators and their research organisations. If successful, some of the co-investigators would then become the principal or co-investigators on the component grant proposals and not be named on the lead grant proposal.

All documents should be completed in single-spaced typescript of minimum font size 11 point Arial font or other sans serif typeface of equivalent size to Arial 11, with margins of at least 2cm. References must now also be presented in minimum font size 11 point.

Please note that Arial narrow and Calibri are not allowable font types as they are smaller and any proposal which has used either of these font types within their submission will be rejected.

Applicants referring to websites should note that referees may choose not to use them.

Case for support

For all applications, the principal investigator must submit a completed Je-S outline proforma together with a case for support.

The case for support should not exceed four sides of A4 and should include the following summary information:

  • outline of research proposed, including species being addressed
  • description of the relationship of the proposal to the research areas.
  • description of the outputs
  • outline of the expected outcomes of a successful proposal and how these will be achieved (for example, inform policy or decision-making)
  • outline of potential collaborations, partnerships or both
  • composition of the research team, highlighting groups that this funding opportunity aims to encourage
  • proposed use of any other NERC facilities (initial discussions should be held with the relevant facilities on feasibility at this stage).

Costs

It is the responsibility of applicants to undertake sufficient planning at the outline proposal stage to determine that the full costs of research proposed (including any facility costs) can be accommodated within the fixed financial limits of the scheme.

The resources indicated at the outline proposal stage are considered as estimates only and may be amended in a subsequent full proposal, within the financial limits of the scheme. No CVs or project partner letters should be submitted at the outline proposal stage.

If you are successful

Applicants should be informed during the week commencing 31 January 2022 if they are to be invited to proceed to the full proposal stage.

Full proposals

Closing date: 5 April 2022

Only applicants successful at the outline proposal stage will be invited to proceed to the full proposal stage.

It is expected that proposals will evolve between the outline proposal and the full proposal (including personnel and partnerships), but the major science elements are expected to remain broadly the same, within the confines of any feedback from the outline proposal stage. Applicants considering any significant changes in the scope of a project should agree them with NERC prior to submitting their full proposals.

We intend to allow up to seven outline proposals to progress from the outline proposal stage to the full proposal stage.

Details on the submission and assessment procedures for full proposals will be provided to the principal investigator of successful outline proposals. As an indication of expectations for this stage, full proposals will be submitted through Je-S and have a similar format to the NERC large grants scheme.

How we will assess your application

Outline proposals

Outline bids will be assessed by the PAG, supported, if required, by some additional independent advisors. Up to seven outline bids will be invited to develop full proposals. Any sift of proposals will be made on the basis of the likely fit of applications to requirements of the call, their relevance to policy stakeholders and potential for excellence.

Applicants will be given brief feedback summarising the reasons why the application was successful or unsuccessful.

No further feedback will be available.

Full proposals

The primary assessment criteria for full proposals will be:

  • excellence
  • fit to scheme.

The full proposals will be internationally peer-reviewed and go to an ECOWind moderating panel that will make funding recommendations to NERC and The Crown Estate as the programme funders. This recommendation will take into account the need for the ECOWind programme to fund a balanced portfolio of projects addressing different key species.

Impact of COVID-19

UKRI recognises that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused major interruptions and disruptions across our communities. We are committed to ensuring that individual applicants and their wider team, including partners and networks, are not penalised for any disruption to their careers. This might have included:

  • breaks and delays
  • disruptive working patterns and conditions
  • the loss of ongoing work
  • role changes that may have been caused by the pandemic.

Reviewers and panel members will be advised to consider the unequal impacts that COVID-19 related disruption might have had on the track record and career development of those individuals included in the proposal. They will be asked to consider the capability of the applicant and their wider team to deliver the research they are proposing.

Where disruptions have occurred applicants can highlight this within their application, if they wish, but there is no requirement to detail the specific circumstances that caused the disruption.

Contact details

Get help with developing your proposal

For help and advice on costings and writing your proposal please contact your research office in the first instance, allowing sufficient time for your organisation’s submission process.

Ask about this funding opportunity

Email: ecowind@nerc.ukri.org

We aim to respond within three working days.

Ask about OWEC

Ask for details or ask to sign up to OWEC newsletters.

Email: OWECEnquiries@thecrownestate.co.uk

Additional info

Responsible research

Through our funding processes, we seek to make a positive contribution to society and the environment, not just through research outputs and outcomes but through the way in which research is conducted and facilities managed.

All NERC grant holders are to adopt responsible research practices as set out in the NERC responsible business statement.

Responsible research is defined as reducing harm or enhancing benefit on the environment and society through effective management of research activities and facilities. Specifically, this covers:

  • the natural environment
  • the local community
  • equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI).

Grant holders should consider the responsible research context of their project, not the host institution as a whole, and take action to enhance their responsible research approach where practical and reasonable.

Implementation and delivery

The implementation and delivery of the programme will be overseen by the ECOWind Programme Executive Board, which will be chaired by NERC and include representatives of The Crown Estate and Defra. The Board will be supported by:

  • a PAG
  • the ECOWind Champion
  • an ECOWind moderating panel.

Following the outline bid stage, it is anticipated that the ECOWind Champions will be in post and will, on behalf of the Programme Executive Board, facilitate the co-development of full project proposals, bringing together those invited to develop full proposals with both policy and other stakeholder representatives.

This facilitation process is designed to avoid key stakeholders being overwhelmed by approaches from the research community. As such researchers are asked to not actively engage at the outline bid stage the stakeholders who have provided responses:

  • Carbon Trust on behalf of the Offshore Renewables Joint Industry Programme (ORJIP)
  • Offshore Wind Partners
  • Centre for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas)
  • Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) (including Offshore Wind
  • Enabling Actions Programme (OWEAP))
  • EDF Renewables UK
  • Marine Management Organisation (MMO)
  • Marine Scotland Science, Marine Directorate, Scottish Government
  • Natural England
  • Offshore Wind Developer (name to be supplied later in process)
  • Orsted
  • Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB)
  • RWE
  • Scottish Power Renewables
  • SSE Renewables
  • Vattenfall
  • Welsh Government.

Read the responses from stakeholders interested in partnering (PDF, 295KB).

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology (such as screen readers). If you need a version of this document in a more accessible format, please email ecowind@nerc.ukri.org.

Full proposals must include a work plan (for up to 48 months). It must be submitted in a modular format, separated into a number of defined work packages (including costs for each work-package outlined in the justification of resources). Some work packages may be higher risk than others.

Work packages should highlight any anticipated significant risks to work packages, and outline how these will be managed. If any higher risk work packages ultimately fail, there will be the opportunity for researchers to propose adjustments to their science plans if time and remaining unspent funds allow.

The progress of funded ECOWind projects against agreed milestones and deliverables will be assessed throughout the lifetime of projects. Reviews of progress by the PAG will take place every six months, and at a mid-term review in Autumn 2024. The mid-term review will also assess the proposed work plans, including proposed well-defined milestones and deliverables, for the final phase of projects.

Information on the level of detail and content covered in project’s progress reports will be provided by the ECOWind Champion in advance of the six monthly and mid-term review meetings. Progress reports will need to include a section where information is provided on actions taken (if any) as a result of previous advice or recommendations from the PAG or the ECOWind Champion.

The outcome of these reviews may lead to changes by the Programme Executive Board in previously agreed milestones and deliverables in order to ensure that the programme stays on track to deliver required outcomes.

If any project fails to pass the mid-term review, the Programme Executive Board may decide to terminate the award at the 30-month point. In the event that a project is terminated, its remaining work plan and milestones and deliverables for the final six months will need to be revised and agreed by the board, following input from the PAG and ECOWind Champions.

Projects that do pass the mid-term review will continue their work for up to a further 24 months, and may be subject to some new milestones and deliverables as agreed by the Programme Executive Board.

The ECOWind programme aims to fund innovative research, some of which may be high risk research (for example involving novel observational and predictive approaches) and the PAG will take this into consideration when reviewing the progress of the work-packages of projects at the six monthly and mid-term review points. For example, the expectations of the pace of progress of project’s work-packages that are very innovative and higher risk will be different to less innovative and lower risk work-packages.

Supporting documents

Responses from stakeholders interested in partnering (PDF, 295KB)

Defra, Marine Scotland and Welsh Government statements on their policy priorities (PDF, 126KB)

Current projects in the Offshore Wind Evidence and Change programme (PDF, 666KB)

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