Funding opportunity

Funding opportunity: Enabling human centred decision making through data visualisation

Apply for funding to enable improved human centred decision making through increased and better interactions with data and visualisations.

You must be based at a UK research organisation eligible for EPSRC funding.

The full economic cost of your project can be up to £750,000. EPSRC will fund 80% of the full economic cost.

Research must be within 50% of the EPSRC information and communication technologies theme remit.

EPSRC is aiming to fund between four and six awards. Projects should run for a maximum of 36 months.

Who can apply

Standard EPSRC eligibility rules apply.

Eligible organisations are:

  • UK higher education institutions
  • research council institutes
  • UK Research and Innovation-approved independent research organisations
  • eligible public sector research establishments
  • NHS bodies with research capacity.

Check if your institution is eligible for funding.

You can apply if you are a resident in the UK and meet at least one of the following conditions:

  • you are employed at the submitting research organisation at a level equivalent to lecturer or above
  • you hold a fixed-term contract that extends beyond the duration of the proposed project, and the host research organisation is prepared to give you all the support normal for a permanent employee
  • you hold an EPSRC, Royal Society or Royal Academy of Engineering fellowship aimed at later career stages
  • you hold fellowships under other schemes (to check eligibility, which is considered on a case-by-case basis, please email

Who is not eligible

Holders of postdoctoral level fellowships are not eligible to apply for an EPSRC grant.

Applications from organisations or individuals that are not eligible will be rejected without reference to panel review.

Submissions to this funding opportunity will count towards the EPSRC repeatedly unsuccessful applicants policy.

What we're looking for

Through this opportunity we aim to support novel research into how interactions with data and visualisations could improve human centred decision making.

For the purpose of this opportunity, ‘human centred decision making’ means decision making with a focus on the ‘human’, either with a human making a decision based on the information or visualisation presented, or a machine making a decision taking into consideration the human’s capability to understand and interrogate the decision outcome presented.

We expect this funding opportunity will encourage multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary research into data mapping and improving visualisations, as well as research into how people interact with data and visualisations, and how improving visualisations and interactions can improve human centred decision making.

In particular, we welcome research in the following areas:

  • mapping complex data into visualisations
  • data evaluation methods
  • human decision making in complex or time constrained environments
  • new display and interaction technology
  • multisensory and inclusive visualisations
  • interactions between a human decision maker and data
  • user centred research, including how people interact with data
  • how improved data visualisation could impact society.

The above is not an exhaustive list. Applicants are able to propose research in other areas as long as they can demonstrate novel research into how interactions with data and visualisations could improve human centred decision making.

You can be a principle investigator on one application and a co-investigator on another application, but you cannot be a principle investigator on two applications or a co-investigator on two applications.

Funding available

The funding available for this opportunity is up to £3 million.

The full economic cost of your project can be up to £750,000. EPSRC will fund 80% of the full economic cost.

We are aiming to fund between four and six awards.

Awards are for a maximum of 36 months.

Equipment over £10,000 in value (including VAT) is not available through this opportunity. Smaller items of equipment (individually under £10,000) can be included in the ‘directly incurred – other costs’ heading.

Find out more about EPSRC approach to equipment funding.

The latest start date of the awarded grants will be June 2023.

Multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary academic collaboration is encouraged, particularly with those who have expertise in:

  • human behaviour
  • social science
  • library and information studies.

Research must be within 50% of the EPSRC information and communications technology (ICT) theme remit.

To be within the remit of the EPSRC ICT theme, the potential outcomes and impacts of proposals must focus on fundamental or applied engineering and physical sciences research into ICT.

Any proposals that EPSRC deems are in the majority outside of the remit of the ICT theme, or the scope of this opportunity, may be rejected without reference to peer review.

Grant additional conditions

Grants are awarded under the standard UK Research and Innovation grant terms and conditions. The following additional grant conditions will also apply:

Additional condition one

It is expected that you will provide EPSRC with a case study detailing outputs and outcomes of the project between six months and three years.

Additional condition two

It is an expectation that the cohort of principal investigators of funded grants will work together to organise a joint end of grant showcase, detailing the work you have carried out.

This should be aimed at peers and potential businesses, other partners or users of the research. There is an expectation the cohort would meet beforehand to organise the event and invite EPSRC representatives to support the cohort and facilitate co-working.

The wording of these conditions may change prior to the grants being awarded.

The additional conditions noted in the opportunity details are not criteria for review or assessment. These conditions are an expectation for all awarded grants holders and will be included in the terms and conditions of the grant. This doesn’t need to be discussed in your application.

How to apply


We are holding a webinar at 10:00 on 1 July 2022 for prospective applicants to this funding opportunity.

For more information about the webinar email

Intention to submit

Anyone wishing to submit a proposal for this funding opportunity is advised to first submit an intention to submit (SmartSurvey) by 16:00 on 8 July 2022.

The intention to submit asks for:

  • name and organisation
  • project title
  • aim and objectives of your research project.

For questions regarding the intention to submit, please see the contact details section of this funding opportunity for the EPSRC contacts.

How to apply

You must apply using the Joint Electronic Submission (Je-S) system.

We recommend you start your application early. You can save completed details in Je-S at any time and return to continue your application later.

When applying, select ‘new document’ then:

  • council: EPSRC
  • document type: standard proposal
  • scheme: standard
  • call/type/mode: enabling human centred decision making through data visualisation.

Once you have completed your application, make sure you ‘submit document’.

You need to submit the application form through Je-S by 16:00 on 2 August 2022.

You will not be able to apply after this time. Please leave enough time for your proposal to pass through your organisation’s Je-S submission route before this date.

You can find advice on completing your application in the Je-S handbook.

What to include

As well as the Je-S application form, the following documents must be submitted:

  • case for support (eight sides of A4, two on your track record and six on the scientific case)
  • workplan (one side of A4)
  • justification of resources (two sides of A4)
  • curriculum vitae (up to two sides of A4 each) for named:
    • postdoctoral staff, researcher co-investigators (research assistants who have made a substantial contribution to the proposal and will be employed on the project for a significant amount of time)
    • visiting researchers
  • letters of support from all project partners included in the Je-S form (no page limit). Follow the EPSRC guidance on project partners letter of support
  • technical assessments for facilities listed as requiring one in the Je-S guidance (no page limit)
  • cover letter (optional attachment, no page limit, not seen by peer review).

You should attach your documents as PDFs to avoid errors. They should be completed in single-spaced Arial 11 font or similar-sized sans serif typeface.

Advice on writing proposals for EPSRC funding.

Ethical information

EPSRC will not fund a project if it believes that there are ethical concerns that have been overlooked or not appropriately accounted for. All relevant parts of the ‘ethical information’ section must be completed.

Guidance on completing ethical information on the Je-S form.

Nominating reviewers

As part of the application process you will be invited to nominate up to three potential reviewers who you feel have the expertise to assess your proposal.

Please ensure that any nominations meet the EPSRC policy on conflicts of interest.

How we will assess your application

Assessment process

The assessment process includes the following stages.

Intention to submit

The intention to submit will not be assessed, it is for monitoring the applications for this opportunity only.

In the event of this funding opportunity being substantially oversubscribed as to be unmanageable, EPSRC reserves the right to modify the assessment process.

Full proposal

Full proposals will be sent to external peer reviewers for comments.

Where sufficiently supportive reviewer comments have been received, principal investigators will be invited to submit a response to the reviewers’ comments. Proposals will then be considered and prioritised for funding by a peer review panel.

Funding decisions will be based on the recommendations provided by the panel.

Full proposals that are not majority within EPSRC remit will be rejected prior to peer review.

Any proposals that are determined to be outside the scope of the funding opportunity, as noted by reviewers when assessing the fit to call assessment criteria, may be rejected prior to panel.

EPSRC reserves the right to sift proposals at any stage to ensure all proposals fit the opportunity.

Assessment criteria

The assessment criteria include the following:

Standard criteria

Quality (primary)

The research excellence of the proposal, making reference to:

  • the novelty, relationship to the context, timeliness and relevance to identified stakeholders
  • the ambition, adventure, transformative aspects or potential outcomes
  • the suitability of the proposed methodology and the appropriateness of the approach to achieving impact. For multidisciplinary proposals please state which aspects of the proposal you feel qualified to assess.
National importance (secondary major)

How the research:

  • contributes to or helps maintain the health of other disciplines
  • contributes to addressing key UK societal challenges
  • contributes to future UK economic success and development of emerging industry or industries
  • meets national needs by establishing or maintaining a unique world-leading activity
  • complements other UK research funded in the area, including any relationship to the EPSRC portfolio
  • plans for dissemination and knowledge exchange with potential beneficiaries of the research.
Applicant and partnerships (secondary)

The ability to deliver the proposed project, making reference to the:

  • appropriateness of the track record of the applicant or applicants
  • balance of skills of the project team, including collaborators.
Resources and management (secondary)

The effectiveness of the proposed planning and management and whether the requested resources are appropriate and have been fully justified, making reference to any:

  • equipment requested, or the viability of the arrangements described to access equipment needed for this project, and particularly on any university or third-party contribution
  • resources requested for activities to either increase impact, for public engagement or to support responsible innovation.

Opportunity specific criteria

Fit to opportunity (primary)

Alignment of research programme to aims and objectives of the funding opportunity, particularly:

  • the demonstration of novel research into how interactions with data and visualisations could improve human centred decision making
  • whether the proposal includes human centred or multidisciplinary or interdisciplinary research with at least 50% EPSRC information and communication technologies remit.


There will be no feedback from the ‘intention to submit’ stage. There is no assessment of the intention to submit.

Feedback on the full proposal is provided by the reviewer’s comments and, unless sifted prior to the meeting, the rank order list information is published on EPSRC’s grants on the web system shortly after the meeting.

Occasionally there is specific feedback from the prioritisation meeting, which will be passed to the applicant.

Guidance for reviewers

For multidisciplinary proposals please state which aspects of the proposal you feel qualified to assess.

Advice and guidance for peer reviewers assessing applications for EPSRC funding.

EPSRC specific guidance for reviewers for the completion of the reviewer form.

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

Funding opportunity information

Joanne Humphries


Laura McDonnell


Get help with applying through Je-S



01793 444164

Opening times

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Additional info


‘Data enabled decision making’ has been an EPSRC information and communication technologies (ICT) theme priority for many years, which promotes research that aims to develop intelligent, adaptive or autonomous systems.

It is recognised that these technologies have expert and non-expert users, and so this priority also encourages user centric research and an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approach.

In addition, the ICT theme cross-cutting priority ‘people at the heart of ICT’ encourages researchers to incorporate user experience and to use end-user needs to inform their research.

There is an increased community interest in decision making technologies, and an awareness of the importance of user interactions with data. This, together with the above priorities, have formed the basis of this funding opportunity.

The scope of this opportunity has been developed in collaboration with members of the ICT research community.

Responsible innovation

EPSRC is fully committed to developing and promoting responsible innovation. Research has the ability to not only produce understanding, knowledge and value, but also unintended consequences, questions, ethical dilemmas and, at times, unexpected social transformations.

We recognise that we have a duty of care to promote approaches to responsible innovation that will initiate ongoing reflection about the potential ethical and societal implications of the research that we sponsor and to encourage our research community to do likewise.

You are expected to work within the EPSRC framework for responsible innovation.

International collaboration

Applicants planning to include international collaborators on their proposal should visit Trusted Research for information and advice on how to get the most out of international collaboration whilst protecting intellectual property, sensitive research and personal information.

Supporting documents

Equality impact assessment (DOCX, 60KB)

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