Funding opportunity

Funding opportunity: Public Engagement Legacy Awards: 2024A

Apply for Legacy award funding to continue your programme to improve public engagement in science and technology.

You must have previously received funding through STFC public engagement awards.

Your previous award grant must have finished within 36 months of the closing date of the opportunity.

Your proposal must focus on an area from the STFC remit. You must be able to demonstrate the success of your previous project through data.

The full economic cost of your project can be up to £62,500. We will fund up to:

  • £50,000 for a first Legacy award
  • £25,000 for a second Legacy award

We would expect your project to run for up to 36 months.

Who can apply

You can only apply for this funding opportunity if you have held an STFC public engagement award in the last 36 months prior to the opportunity closing date.

We can only fund organisations that have audited accounts. If this does not describe your organisation, then you must work in partnership with an organisation that can receive the funding on your behalf.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) has introduced new role types for funding opportunities being run on the new UKRI Funding Service.

For full details, visit Eligibility as an individual.

Who is eligible to apply

This Legacy award funding opportunity is exclusively for applicants that:

  • have previously received funding through STFC public engagement awards
  • are based in the UK

The project lead must be eligible to apply on behalf of the organisation that would hold the award. We would usually expect a Legacy award project lead to be:

  • the same person that applied for the original grant
  • based at the same host organisation

However, we recognise that applicants may change their host institution or that the leadership of a programme may change. Therefore, we do not require identical project leads or host institutions between the original grant and the Legacy award.

You must highlight any changes in the host institution and project lead in your application in the ‘Applicant and team capability to deliver’ section.

If there is any uncertainty, we reserve the right to contact the principal investigator or project lead of the original award to confirm the proposed leadership arrangements of the Legacy award.

Subject matter expert requirements

You must include a subject matter expert (SME) in your application that is in an STFC-funded area of science or technology. While these SMEs often play an active role in delivering the engagement activities, this is not mandatory. The SME may act as an adviser on the scientific content.

Previous applications

To apply for a Legacy award, the applicant or their organisation must have previously held one of the following public engagement awards:

  • Spark award
  • Nucleus award
  • Small award
  • Large award

The previous award must have ended fewer than 36 months before the current Legacy award funding opportunity closure date.

You may apply for a Legacy award related to one of the previous public engagement awards that is still active at the time of the Legacy award application. In such instances, the proposed Legacy award:

  • cannot have a start date any earlier than the current end date of the original award
  • must still be based on clear evidence of the efficacy of the original award, using robust evaluation data

You may apply for up to two Legacy awards related to an original grant.

Applications submitted to previous Legacy funding opportunities may be resubmitted, these should clearly have taken full account of the feedback provided.

Who is not eligible to apply

If you meet either of the following criteria you will not be eligible to apply:

  • we cannot accept applicants who were funded via the Leadership Fellows award scheme
  • applicants applying for their third Legacy award will not be considered

Impact of COVID-19 on projects

At the time of opening we recognise that there remain potential issues related to COVID-19. The STFC Public Engagement team would be happy to discuss the situation as applicants develop their submissions. We encourage you to continue to engage and liaise with partners to the fullest practical extent and develop your application accordingly.

Equality, diversity and inclusion

We are committed to achieving equality of opportunity for all funding applicants. We encourage applications from a diverse range of researchers.

We support people to work in a way that suits their personal circumstances. This includes:

  • career breaks
  • support for people with caring responsibilities
  • flexible working
  • alternative working patterns

Find out more about equality, diversity and inclusion at UKRI.

What we're looking for


Legacy awards allow the holders of previous public engagement awards to apply for funding to continue their programmes, and evolve those programmes based on learning and evaluation.

As part of this Legacy award, we expect you to:

  • deliver high quality public engagement activities during the lifetime of the award
  • raise the profile and standards of public engagement within your host organisation or professional community, including sharing best practice and developing new talent
  • champion STFC science and technology, including the impact of science and technology on society
  • regularly interact with STFC’s Public Engagement team and Communication team, including participation in STFC networks, events and advisory structures when requested
  • work with partners to secure the future of your engagement programme

Continuing a previous project

To be awarded a Legacy award, you will have to demonstrate the success of your original engagement programme, and evidence that success via good-quality evaluation.

Legacy awards may be used for the continuation of your previous public engagement award.

To be eligible, the original grant upon which the Legacy award is building must have ended less than 36 months before the current Legacy award funding opportunity closing date.

As Legacy award applications are based upon previously successful proposals, they are required to be high quality and will be reviewed using strict quality criteria. This is regardless of the grant scheme that the original award was funded by.

The Legacy award programme of work proposed should be clearly linked to the original grant. Any evolution or changes to the activities in the original project must be justified using the learning and evaluation from the original grant.

Proposing new activities

Although not compulsory, you may wish to propose new activities that are considered necessary to strengthen the engagement practice, community networks or training opportunities initiated in the original grant.

Applications that include new or expanded activities must include evidence that these are well considered, planned and justified in the context of the proposal. Applications that do not include new activities, such as those with a specific focus on an area of work from the original award, are equally valid.

What we will support

We will support up to two Legacy awards from a single original grant which can be held sequentially, but not concurrently.

Unlike other public engagement awards, it is a requirement for Legacy award applications that project partners will support the delivery of the project. You must be able to demonstrate how both parties will make the proposed programme a success in the proposal.

We will only provide a proportion of the total cost of the Legacy award. The remaining support must be secured via cash or in-kind contributions from project partners.

Proposed engagement programmes

Proposed engagement programmes must clearly align to the:

  • remit of the STFC science programme
  • science, technology and engineering work of STFC’s national and international laboratories and facilities

The STFC science programme remit includes:

  • astronomy, solar and planetary science
  • particle physics and particle astrophysics
  • cosmology
  • nuclear physics
  • accelerator science

Legacy awards will not be awarded unless there is a strong and demonstrable link between the proposed activities and STFC science, technology and engineering.

Developing networks or capacity building

Legacy awards may also be used for a continuation of activities that are dedicated to developing community networks or capacity building in public engagement.

This may be the sole purpose of a Legacy award or an application may combine engagement activities and networking into a coherent package.

What we consider as a continuing programme

Legacy awards allow our most demonstrably successful engagement programmes to continue and to evolve. However, when is an engagement programme considered ‘a continuation’ of previous work, and when is it considered ‘new’ by STFC?

For general guidance, we consider a programme to be a continuation of a previous award if:

  • the aims and objectives of the new programme closely match those of the previous award
  • the programme of work and the methodology is clearly linked to the previous award
  • the characteristics of the target audience are similar to those of the previous award

If in doubt, you are strongly advised to contact the Public Engagement team to discuss your Legacy award application.

Support STFC’s public engagement strategy

You should use your proposal to clearly explain how your Legacy award will further the aims of the STFC public engagement strategy.

Social, ethical and economic benefits

Applications that highlight the social, ethical, and economic benefits of research are welcomed.

Evaluation plans

We focus heavily on evaluation. You must provide a clear evaluation plan showing details of how the outputs, outcomes and impacts of the Legacy award will be captured and evaluated.

We require applicants to report on the outcomes of their Legacy award in line with the STFC public engagement evaluation framework, which describes their approach towards effective engagement.

We suggest that you should familiarise yourself with the STFC public engagement evaluation framework and consider how the framework could be used to evaluate your engagement programme.

Legacy awards and STFC’s Wonder Initiative

The Wonder Initiative is about giving under-served communities an equal voice by listening, understanding, and responding to what people want to know about science and technology.

Wonder marks a long-term commitment by STFC public engagement to move our focus towards audience-driven public engagement with under-served communities in the most socio-economically deprived areas of the UK.

Financial support through Legacy awards is an important part of the Wonder Initiative.
The target audience for Wonder is defined according to indices of multiple deprivation. Specifically, We are interested in supporting audience-driven engagement that works with audiences, particularly those eight to 14 years old and their families and carers, from the 40% most socio-economically deprived areas of the UK.

We define the 40% most socio-economically deprived areas of the UK as those areas listed in the bottom two quintiles of the indices of multiple deprivation for the respective part of the UK.

Applicants are explicitly invited to submit Legacy awards that work with the Wonder target audience.

We encourage applications that propose engagement with audiences considered to have low ‘science capital’.

Applicants may choose which audiences to engage with and the methods of engagement. These must be outlined in the proposal.


The duration of this award is a maximum of 36 months.

Funding available

Legacy awards come under the full economic costs framework. The maximum value that may be sought for a Legacy award varies according to whether you are applying for your first or second Legacy award related to an original grant.

The Legacy award scheme mandates significant support from project partners. The maximum level of funding that we will provide differs according to whether this is your first or second Legacy award application:

  • first award: up to 50% funding of the total project cost (up to a maximum of £50,000 payable by STFC)
  • second award: up to 25% funding of the total project cost (up to a maximum of £25,000 payable by STFC)

You are required to have secured the remaining project funding from internal sources, project partners or both in advance of submitting the application to us. This support can be cash or in-kind. This support must be detailed in the corresponding letters of support.

Funding requirements

The following details the differing Legacy award funding requirements for full economic cost and non-full economic cost organisations. In this example, the maximum funding value is assumed, but you can request lower overall award values.

First Legacy award funding requirements for full economic cost organisations:

  • total value of award: £112,500
  • maximum STFC funding available: £62,500
  • of which the maximum payable by STFC: £50,000
  • minimum required project partner support: £50,000

Second Legacy award funding requirements for full economic cost organisations:

  • total value of award: £106,250
  • maximum STFC funding available: £31,250
  • of which the maximum payable by STFC: £25,000
  • minimum required project partner support: £75,000

First Legacy award funding requirements for non-full economic cost organisations:

  • total value of award: £100,000
  • maximum STFC funding available: £50,000
  • of which the maximum payable by STFC: £50,000
  • minimum required project partner support: £50,000

Second Legacy award funding requirements for non-full economic cost organisations:

  • total value of award: £100,000
  • maximum STFC funding available: £25,000
  • of which the maximum payable by STFC: £25,000
  • minimum support required from internal sources or project partners: £75,000

What we will fund

Other than restrictions around equipment, there are no set restrictions on the type of costs that may be applied for, for example:

  • contributions to salaries (where a named individual will undertake work that would not be considered part of their normal duties)
  • cost of materials
  • travel and subsistence

What we will not fund

  • the continuation of a programme that ended over 36 months before the current Legacy award funding opportunity closure date
  • applicants that have not secured the required minimum level of project partner support
  • applicants applying for their third Legacy award
  • projects where the target audiences are not primarily UK residents
  • fees or honoraria to people already in paid employment to visit or give talks at schools, societies and so on, where such activities would reasonably be undertaken as part of their normal duties
  • costs for hardware or equipment over the individual value of £10,000
  • infrastructure funding or costs for building construction and maintenance
  • projects where it is clear that the whole project would go ahead irrespective of STFC support
  • retrospective funding, including those projects with a start date after the closing date but before the funding decisions are announced
  • contingency funds

Awards will not be funded for the sole purpose of authorship and publication of books and novels.

If you are applying from or for schools, please note the following ineligible costs:

  • programmes of formal education
  • school trips to CERN and trips to other laboratories, observatories and science venues, unless they are intrinsic to a wider public engagement project

Legacy awards for new digital content

At the time of opening we recognise that there remain potential issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic that could make traditional engagement modes more challenging than they have been in for previous Legacy awards funding opportunities.

For this opportunity we are continuing to be receptive to applications that consider the appropriateness of remote and virtual methodologies for enabling effective two-way engagement as a potential focal area for their work.

We are also continuing to be less stringent regarding the previous restriction whereby we would only consider funding digital content (for example websites, videos) as an intrinsic part of a wider engagement programme.

Where applications are focused on face-to-face delivery, applicants are encouraged to actively consider mitigation and contingency planning should the intended activity delivery not be possible due to potential residual issues related to COVID-19.

Any application for digital content needs to include:

  • a demonstration of the ‘evidence of need’ for any proposed content, and gaps in current provision of such material
  • evidence that the target audience for any content will be involved in the design and production of such content
  • a plan to facilitate audience participation and two-way engagement
  • a plan (and budget) for keeping the content sustainable in the future
  • information on licensing in order to promote sharing and reuse of the digital content
  • acknowledgement of web accessibility rules and regulations

How to apply

We are running this funding opportunity on the new UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) Funding Service. You cannot apply on the Joint Electronic Submissions (Je-S) system.

The project lead is responsible for completing the application process on the Funding Service, but we expect all team members and project partners to contribute to the application.

Only the lead research organisation can submit an application to UKRI.

To apply:

Select ‘Start application’ near the beginning of this Funding finder page.

  1. Confirm you are the project lead.
  2. Sign in or create a Funding Service account. To create an account, select your organisation, verify your email address, and set a password. If your organisation is not listed, email
  3. Answer questions directly in the text boxes. You can save your answers and come back to complete them or work offline and return to copy and paste your answers. If we need you to upload a document, follow the upload instructions in the Funding Service. All questions and assessment criteria are listed in the How to apply section on this Funding finder page.
  4. Allow enough time to check your application in ‘read-only’ view before sending to your research office.
  5. Send the completed application to your research office for checking. They will return it to you if it needs editing.
  6. Your research office will submit the completed and checked application to UKRI.

Watch our research office webinars about the new Funding Service.

If this is the first time that your organisation has applied to UKRI, or you are unsure whether it is, then you will need to contact the Funding Service helpdesk who will require your organisation name, city and country. Please note that you should allow 10 working days for this to be actioned.

If your organisation has applied previously via Je-S but not on the Funding Service then you will also need to contact the Funding Service helpdesk. This will ensure that it is added to the list of research organisations (ROs) for selection when setting up an applicant account.


We must receive your application by 19 December 2023 at 4.00pm UK time.

You will not be able to apply after this time.

Make sure you are aware of and follow any internal institutional deadlines.

Following the submission of your application to the funding opportunity, your application cannot be changed, and applications will not be returned for amendment. If your application does not follow the guidance, it may be rejected.

Personal data

Processing personal data

As part of UKRI, we will need to collect some personal information to manage your Funding Service account and the registration of your funding applications.

We will handle personal data in line with UK data protection legislation and manage it securely. For more information, including how to exercise your rights, read our privacy notice.

Publication of outcomes

As part of UKRI, we will publish the outcomes of this funding opportunity at board and panel outcomes.

If your application is successful, we will publish some personal information on the UKRI Gateway to Research.


Word limit: 400

In plain English, provide a summary we can use to identify the most suitable experts to assess your application.

We may make this summary publicly available on external-facing websites, so make it suitable for a variety of readers, for example:

  • opinion-formers
  • policymakers
  • the public
  • the wider research community

Guidance for writing a summary

Clearly describe your proposed work in terms of:

  • context
  • the challenge the project addresses
  • aims and objectives
  • potential applications and benefits

Core team

List the key members of your team and assign them roles from the following:

  • project lead (PL)
  • project co-lead (UK) (PcL)
  • specialist
  • grant manager
  • professional enabling staff
  • research and innovation associate
  • technician
  • visiting researcher

Only list one individual as project lead.

Find out more about UKRI’s new grant roles.


Word limit: 500

What are you hoping to achieve with your proposed work?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Explain how your proposed work:

  • is of high quality and importance
  • is timely given current trends, context and needs

We expect you to demonstrate:

  • a clearly defined rationale for the proposed programme and evidence to support this, including how this links to the aims of the STFC Public Engagement Strategy
  • a programme of high-quality public engagement
  • that the programme inspires and involves target audiences with stories of STFC science, people, technology or facilities
  • that the engagement activities clearly focus on the STFC science programme remit or align with the work of the STFC national and international laboratories and facilities


Word limit: 750

How are you going to deliver your proposed work?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Explain how you have designed your approach so that it:

  • clearly describes the different engagement, networking, or capacity building activities planned as part of the project
  • clearly identifies target audiences and the appropriateness of the methodology proposed to reach and retain these groups
  • provides evidence of audience demand
  • demonstrates and builds upon learning from previous activities and wider sector good practice

Applicants are expected to upload a single PDF document to provide evidence of audience demand, if applicable. The Funding Service will provide document upload details when you apply. If this does not apply to your proposed work, you will be able to indicate this in the Funding Service.

Evaluation plan

Word limit: 400

How will the outputs, outcomes and impacts of the project be captured, evaluated and shared?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

You will need to supply clear evidence of the following:

  • a detailed evaluation plan including methodology
  • how the evaluation is linked to the STFC PE evaluation framework
  • how learning from the proposed activity will be captured and shared

Dissemination plan

Word limit: 400

How will you publicise the resources, outcomes and outputs of the project?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

You will need to supply clear evidence of the following:

  • planning for dissemination of the resources, outcomes, outputs, and so on, to relevant audiences
  • how wider audiences could benefit through activities such as sharing good practice or sharing learning

Applicant and team capability to deliver

Word limit: 750

Why are you the right individual or team to successfully deliver the proposed work?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Evidence of how you, and if relevant your team, have:

  • the relevant experience to deliver the proposed work
  • the right balance of skills and expertise to cover the proposed work
  • the appropriate leadership and management skills to deliver the work and your approach to developing others

Complete this as a narrative. Do not format it like a CV.

UKRI has introduced new role types for funding opportunities being run on the new Funding Service.

For full details, see Eligibility as an individual.

Ethics and responsible research and innovation (RRI)

Word limit: 250

What are the ethical or RRI implications and issues relating to the proposed work? If you do not think that the proposed work raises any ethical or RRI issues, explain why.

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Demonstrate that you have identified and evaluated:

  • the relevant ethical or responsible research and innovation considerations
  • how you will manage these considerations

If you are collecting or using data you should identify:

  • any legal and ethical considerations of collecting, releasing or storing the data including consent, confidentiality, anonymisation, security and other ethical considerations and, in particular, strategies taken to not preclude further reuse of data
  • formal information standards with which study will be compliant

Resources and cost justification

Word limit: 500

What will you need to deliver your proposed work and how much will it cost?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Justify the application’s requested resources including:

  • project staff
  • travel and subsistence
  • any consumables beyond typical requirements, or that are required in exceptional quantities

Assessors are not looking for detailed costs or a line-by-line breakdown of all project resources. Overall, they want you to demonstrate how the resources you anticipate needing for your proposed work:

  • are comprehensive, appropriate, and justified
  • represent the optimal use of resources to achieve the intended outcomes
  • maximise potential outcomes and impacts

Any costs eligible to be funded at 100% FEC should be listed under the ‘Exceptions’ heading to ensure that they are funded at the appropriate level.

Project partners

Add details about any project partners’ contributions. If there are no project partners, you can indicate this on the Funding Service.

A project partner is a collaborating organisation who will have an integral role in the proposed project This may include direct (cash) or indirect (in-kind) contributions such as expertise, staff time or use of facilities.

Add the following project partner details:

  • the organisation name and address (searchable via a drop-down list or enter the organisation’s details manually, as applicable)
  • the project partner contact name and email address
  • the type of contribution (direct or in-direct) and its monetary value

If a detail is entered incorrectly and you have saved the entry, remove the specific project partner record and re-add it with the correct information.

For audit purposes, UKRI requires formal collaboration agreements to be put in place if an award is made.

Project partners: letters or emails of support

Word limit: 10

Upload a single PDF containing the letters or emails of support from each partner you named in the ‘Project partner’ section.

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Enter the words ‘attachment supplied’ in the text box, or if you do not have any project partners enter N/A. Each letter or email you provide should:

  • confirm the partner’s commitment to the project
  • clearly explain the value, relevance, and possible benefits of the work to them
  • describe any additional value that they bring to the project

Save letters or emails of support from each partner in a single PDF no bigger than 8MB. Unless specially requested, please do not include any sensitive personal data within the attachment.

For the file name, use the unique Funding Service number the system gives you when you create an application, followed by the words ‘Project partner’.

If the attachment does not meet these requirements, the application will be rejected.

The Funding Service will provide document upload details when you apply. If you do not have any project partners, you will be able to indicate this in the Funding Service.

Ensure you have prior agreement from project partners so that, if you are offered funding, they will support your project as indicated in the contributions template.

For audit purposes, UKRI requires formal collaboration agreements to be put in place if an award is made.

Do not provide letters of support from host and project co-leads’ research organisations.

Target audience

Word limit: 100

We expect that projects will focus primarily on audiences based in the UK.

Please show the total number estimated number of people who will be reached within each audience group shown below and express this as a percentage (which must total 100%):

  • primary school children
  • secondary school children (up to 16 years old)
  • 16-19 year-olds
  • teachers
  • general public
  • families
  • other

If you are targeting a specific subset of the general public not mentioned above, please use the entry for ‘general public’ and specify here (for example gender specific or SEN audiences).

Wonder Initiative

Word limit: 300

If appropriate, how will your project engage with the Wonder Initiative audience and what is the anticipated impact?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Please provide details of the following:

  • evidence of demand
  • evidence of how the audience would be reached
  • the appropriateness of the activities to the audience
  • the potential impact on the audience

The Wonder Initiative aims to connect people from all backgrounds with our science and technology. Wonder is about giving under-served communities an equal voice by listening, understanding and responding to what people want to know about science and technology.

The Wonder Initiative focuses on working with participants from the 40% most socio-economically deprived areas of the UK, in particular eight to 14-year-olds and their families and carers.

STFC programme area

Word limit: 50

Which of the STFC programme areas are relevant to your project?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Please show the percentage of relevant programme areas and approximate percentages (which must total 100%):

  • astronomy
  • solar and planetary science
  • particle physics
  • particle astrophysics
  • cosmology
  • nuclear physics
  • accelerator science
  • STFC facilities
  • other

Your organisation’s support

Word limit: 250

Provide details of support from your organisation.

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Provide a statement of support from your organisation detailing why the proposed work is needed. This should include details of any matched funding that will be provided to support the activity and any additional support that might add value to the work.

How we will assess your application

Assessment process

We will assess your application using the following process.

Peer review

We will invite experts to review your application independently, against the specified criteria for this funding opportunity.

You will not be able to nominate reviewers for applications on the new UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) Funding Service. Research councils will continue to select expert reviewers.

We are monitoring the requirement for applicant-nominated reviewers as we review policies and processes as part of the continued development of the new Funding Service.

Panel and interview

Following peer review, we will invite experts to use the evidence provided by reviewers and your applicant response to assess the quality of your application and rank it alongside other applications. As part of the panel process, an expert interview panel will conduct interviews with applicants after which the panel will make a funding recommendation.

We expect interviews to be held on February 2024 (dates to be confirmed).

Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) will make the final funding decision.


We aim to complete the assessment process within four months of receiving your application.


If your application was discussed by a panel, we will give feedback with the outcome of your application.

Principles of assessment

We support the San Francisco declaration on research assessment and recognise the relationship between research assessment and research integrity.

Find out about the UKRI principles of assessment and decision making.

Assessment areas

The assessment areas we will use are:

  • Vision
  • Approach
  • Evaluation plan
  • Dissemination plan
  • Applicant and team capability to deliver
  • Resources and cost justification

Find details of assessment questions and criteria under the ‘Application questions’ heading in the ‘How to apply’ section.

Contact details

Get help with your application

If you have a question and the answers aren’t provided on this page.

Important note: The Helpdesk is committed to helping users of the UKRI Funding Service as effectively and as quickly as possible. In order to manage cases at peak volume times, the Helpdesk will triage and prioritise those queries with an imminent opportunity deadline or a technical issue. Enquiries raised where information is available on the Funding Finder opportunity page and should be understood early in the application process (for example, regarding eligibility or content/remit of an opportunity) will not constitute a priority case and will be addressed as soon as possible.

Contact details

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.

For questions related to this specific funding opportunity please contact

Any queries regarding the system or the submission of applications through the Funding Service should be directed to the helpdesk.

Telephone: 01793 547490

Our phone lines are open:

  • Monday to Thursday 8:30am to 5:00pm
  • Friday 8:30am to 4:30pm

To help us process queries quicker, we request that users:

  • highlight the council and opportunity name in the subject title of their email query
  • include the application reference number
  • refrain from contacting more than one mailbox at a time

Find out further information on submitting an application.

Sensitive information

If you or a core team member need to tell us something you wish to remain confidential, please contact

Include in the subject line: [the funding opportunity title; sensitive information; your Funding Service application number].

Typical examples of confidential information include:

  • individual is unavailable until a certain date (for example due to parental leave)
  • declaration of interest
  • additional information about eligibility to apply that would not be appropriately shared in the ‘Applicant and team capability’ section
  • conflict of interest for UKRI to consider in reviewer or panel participant selection
  • the application is an invited resubmission

For information about how UKRI handles personal data, read UKRI’s privacy notice.

Additional info


Aims of the programme

The aims of the programme are to:

  • allow the best Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) grant-funded public engagement programmes to continue to grow and evolve over time
  • encourage and support high quality public engagement activities that highlight STFC’s science and technology
  • create a network of highly-skilled practitioners of public engagement with STFC science who inspire and involve colleagues, students, and the public in their activities
  • highlight the achievements of STFC science and technology
  • demonstrate the excitement of research and the value of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics to the UK

Scheme conditions and features

STFC Public Engagement Legacy Awards are governed by the grant conditions as set out in the STFC guidance for applicants, unless otherwise stated.

Applications are accepted and awards are made on the understanding that you agree to observe the terms and conditions and the scheme requirements set out in this document and any amendments issued.

Movement between institutions

You must take up the award at the host institution identified in the application. We will not allow you to change your host institution prior to taking up an award.

Consideration will be given to requests during the course of an award to relocate the grant to a different institution for scientific or domestic reasons. The agreement of the institutions concerned will be required before seeking approval from us.

Reporting and liaison with STFC

You will be required to:

  • provide reports of activities to the public engagement team when requested
  • meet with the public engagement grants mentor a minimum of twice a year
  • collect data relevant to your activities throughout your award in the STFC public engagement metrics spreadsheet
  • send your activities data to the public engagement team once a year

You will be expected to:

  • attend an annual meeting of all STFC public engagement grant holders
  • regularly update the record of your grant using the research council reporting tool, Researchfish, in line with the STFC public engagement evaluation framework

We reserve the right to request periodic information or to visit you.

You may also be asked to attend meetings to exchange information and ideas with others undertaking STFC public engagement activities.

You must make all reasonable efforts, if so invited, to respond to requests for information or to attend events or activities organised by STFC concerning the research undertaken. Such events may be held after a grant has finished.

Research council reporting tool

We ask STFC public engagement grant holders additional questions in the reporting tool. This enables us to easily extract data regarding the impact of the work of our Legacy grant holders whenever required. It also serves as a database of impacts (outputs, outcomes and reach) for your own reference.

Guidance on how to fill in the public engagement questions on Researchfish, and the metric spreadsheet, are available on the STFC website.

Publications, resources and media acknowledgements

Publications and other forms of media communication, including media appearances, press releases and conferences, must acknowledge the support received from STFC, quoting the grant reference number (if appropriate).

Resources produced as a result of any grants should acknowledge STFC as the funding source using the standard format agreed by funders and publishers and detailed in the additional information accompanying this grant.

External media activity produced as a result of this award must be signed off by the STFC Media team before the activity takes place, or is published. This is to ensure appropriate coordination and opportunities to increase the impact of engagement. This includes:

  • press releases
  • online videos
  • media briefings

You are responsible for giving us sufficient notice about activities so that we:

  • can advise on content
  • potentially build the activities of grant holders into our own communications and engagement programmes

Intellectual assets

It is the responsibility of the research organisation, and all engaged in the research, to make:

  • every reasonable effort to ensure that the intellectual assets obtained in the course of the research are used to the benefit of society and the economy (whether protected by intellectual property rights or not)
  • outcomes and resources available to both research and more widespread audiences (for example, to inform potential users and beneficiaries of the research)

Unless stated otherwise, the ownership of all intellectual assets, including intellectual property, and responsibility for their application, rests with the organisation that generates them.

We may, in individual cases, reserve the right to:

  • retain ownership of intellectual assets, including intellectual property
  • assign ownership to a third party under an exploitation agreement (if necessary)
  • arrange for it to be exploited for the national benefit and that of the research organisation involved

This right, if exercised, will be clearly set out in an additional grant condition.


It is a condition of every grant that we accept no liability for the manner in which the work in connection with the grant is undertaken.

The research organisation and Legacy grant holder will be responsible in all respects for the work and the consequences of it.

Termination of awards

A grant may be terminated, or its conditions varied, at any time at the absolute discretion of STFC.

Should you leave your institution for another research organisation or an alternative type of employment, you must notify the STFC Public Engagement team immediately.
If it is not possible to transfer the grant, then we will terminate payments from the day immediately after the Legacy grant holder leaves the host institution.

Failure to submit reports will result in termination of the award unless there are mitigating reasons.

Research disruption due to COVID-19

We recognise 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 career, such as:

  • 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 capability to deliver and career development of those individuals included in the application. 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, you can highlight this within your application if you wish, but there is no requirement to detail the specific circumstances that caused the disruption.

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