T-AP Digging into Data Challenge


The Trans-Atlantic Platform today announced that it will be launching its first international funding opportunity: the T-AP Digging into Data Challenge.

The T-AP Digging into Data Challenge will launch in March. The Challenge will support research projects that explore and apply new “big data” sources and methodologies to address questions in the social sciences and humanities.

The funding opportunity is open to projects that address any research question in humanities and/or social sciences disciplines by using new, large-scale, digital data analysis techniques. All projects must show how these techniques can lead to new theoretical insights. Proposed projects can use any data source.

About T-AP

The Trans-Atlantic Platform (T-AP) is an unprecedented collaboration between key humanities and social science funders and facilitators from South America, North America and Europe.

T-AP aims to enhance the ability of funders, research organizations and researchers to engage in transnational dialogue and collaboration. Among other activities, it works to identify common challenges and emerging priorities in social science and humanities research. T-AP also facilitates the formation of networks within the social sciences and humanities and helps connect them with other disciplines.

About the Digging into Data Challenge

The Digging into Data Challenge has been funding cutting-edge digital research in the humanities and social sciences since 2009. Now under the auspices of T-AP, the program will support collaborative research teams from three continents: Europe (Finland, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal (to be confirmed) and the United Kingdom); North America (Canada, Mexico, the United States); and South America (Brazil and Argentina).

Further information about this transatlantic funding opportunity – including links to application details – will be made available on the Trans-Atlantic Platform website as of March 1, 2016.

If you are interested in this please contact N.Arblaster@staffs.ac.uk or




Bid Tender: Funding options for the NHS and Social Care in the UK


The Health Foundation is seeking a provider to undertake a programme of research to identify a range of feasible options for the future funding of health and social care in the UK in light of the anticipated gap between projected funding and demand for services.

The aim in commissioning this research is to provide an independent and robust evidence base that can be used to improve the quality of debate on the long term funding of health and social care in the UK.

Based on previous similar work commissioned by the Health Foundation, we anticipate bids up to a maximum of £300,000 (inclusive of VAT and expenses).

Deadline: 10am Monday 7 March 2016

If you are interested in the tender please contact N.Arblaster@staffs.ac.uk




Partner Search for H2020: Inclusive, Innovative and Reflective Societies



The Polibienestar Research Institute from the University of Valencia are looking for partners to submit applications for any of the open calls related to Europe in a changing world – inclusive, innovative and reflective Societies of Horizon 2020:


– Co-creation for growth and inclusion (CO-CREATION)
– Reversing inequalities and promoting fairness (REV-INEQUAL)
– Understanding Europe – Promoting the European Public and Cultural Space (CULT-COOP)

Polibienestar is part of the University of Valencia (Spain) and has extensive experience in cooperating with public administration and private institutions in the design, planning and implementation of social policies and in developing EU-funded R&D projects which have received funding from national and international bodies. Polibienestar has been a project partner in European projects such as:
– Innovative Social and Employment Policies for Inclusive and Resilient Labour Markets in Europe (INSPIRES)
– Collective Awareness Platforms for Improving Accessibility in European Cities Regions (CAP4Access)


For further information and contact information, please see the Polibienestar profile.

The team in Research Business & Employability Services (RBES) manage the H2020 proposal process for Staffordshire University, please let us know if you are interested in H2020 funding.

You can reach us at our email: researchservices@staffs.ac.uk

Annual UKRO event: Presentations available

Last Wednesday Dec 9th the Research Services team, from Research Business & Employability Services, hosted Blazej Thomas from the UK Research Office as part of our annual programme of events for research active academics.

Prof Allan Howells, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research, Enterprise and External Affairs) introduced the day.  The invitation only event was attended by over 30 academics from all faculties across the university – who engaged with selected topics form the upcoming H2020 calls. Blazej shared lessons learnt from the first H2020 call rounds, as well as exploring specific themes from the funding programme.

In the afternoon the focus was on the Marie Skladowska Curie programme –where Blazej was able to clarify the detail of the programme to those intending to bid.

Copies of the presentations are available on request from researchservices@staffs.ac.uk

Image – Sean Farrell, Development Manager RBES; Naomi Arblaster Development Manager RBES; Prof Allan Howells, Vice-Chancellor, Research, Enterprise and External Affairs; Blazej Thomas, European Advisor UKRO; Jose Beech, Development Manager RBES; Emma Davies, Head of Research Services RBES.





Next REF could be delayed beyond 2020

ref-logoNext REF could be delayed beyond 2020

The UK’s next Research Excellence Framework could be delayed beyond its original 2020 date, a conference on the REF was told.

Article based on Research Professional:

The delay to the second Research Excellence Framework is being attributed in part to uncertainty over who will administer the exercise, given planned changes to the role of the Higher Education Funding Council for England.

HEFCE has postponed a consultation for the next REF until after the spending review, due on 25 November. This is in response to a request from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, which is in the midst of a major reorganisation of the UK’s research and higher education system.

Although HEFCE has a draft consultation document ready, this needs to receive the approval of the four funding councils of the UK. HEFCE is expecting to publish the final document after Christmas, with consultation starting in the New Year. It could be delayed further if BIS reduces HEFCE’s quality-related funding remit or if it asks the council to consider using metrics in the REF, which is being actively discussed in the department. The next REF could potentially still take place in 2020, but only if the consultation does open in early January, and if the department doesn’t add further, or more complex questions to the consultation.

Staffordshire University’s response to the consultation will be led by Prof Nachi Chockalingam in his capacity as Chair of the REF Planning Group.

Research Fortnight has learnt that the consultation will examine:

  • the frequency of REF exercises,
  • the appropriate number of panels and
  • whether impact case studies that continue to deliver impact could be resubmitted.

HEFCE is also understood to be considering allowing existing case studies with added value to be submitted again. The council is believed to be going to allow institutions to submit materials dated from 1 January 2014.

The Russell Group of research-intensive universities has publicly advocated a decadal REF, saying that this would significantly reduce costs. However, some smaller institutions regard a longer gap as detrimental to their interests, as they may have to wait longer for increased funding.

New Call: China–UK research and innovation bridges competition



Innovate UK, the Research Councils UK (RCUK) and the Ministry for Science and Technology (MoST) China are to invest up to £16 million in collaborative research and development projects that propose new commercial solutions to critical challenges impacting the socio-economic growth and development of China in relation to energy, healthcare, urbanisation and agri-food.

The UK investment has been made possible through the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills-managed Newton Fund

The aim of the competition is to bring together companies (small to medium-sized companies and/or larger businesses), research organisations, academics and other collaborators from China and the UK for the joint research and development of new solutions to key socio-economic challenges, in the form of innovative products, processes or services. The principal market a project must consider is China.

Projects must be collaborative, involving both UK and Chinese participants, with both a UK lead partner and a Chinese lead partner. On the UK side, projects can be led by either a business or a research organisation. The lead partner should be able to demonstrate a clear route to commercialisation of the proposed product(s) or service(s), and should have a primary focus on the translation of research and/or knowledge.

We expect to fund mainly industrial research projects. For UK participants, small or micro businesses could receive up to 70% of their eligible project costs, medium-sized businesses 60% and large businesses 50%.

We expect total UK project costs to range in size from £800,000 to £1 million (although we may consider project costs outside this range), and for projects to last for up to 24 months.

The UK lead partner must submit an application on behalf of all UK participants in the project to Innovate UK. The Chinese lead partner will submit their application for the same project to MoST or MoST’s executing agency.

This is a 2-stage competition that opens for applicants on 16 November 2015. The deadline for stage 1 applications is at noon UK time on 30 March 2016. UK applicants must register by noon on 23 March 2016, one week before the application deadline.

Click here for further details



Annual UK Research Office (UKRO) visit on December 9th

UKRO-logoOur annual UK Research Office (UKRO) visit by our representative Blazej Thomas is on December 9th. This year’s visit will be focused on the European mobility actions of the Horizon 2020 programme.

book your place here:


 You are warmly invited to attend the UKRO session, at the Ashley Centre LT 114/116 on December 9th, from 1.30pm – 3pm

Blazej will be presenting details of the Marie Curie Skladowska Actions (MCSA) fund which provides opportunities for academic mobility across the EU.

The MSCA aim to equip researchers with the necessary skills and international experience for a successful career, either in the public or the private sector. The programme responds to the challenges sometimes faced by researchers, offering them attractive working conditions and the opportunity to move between academic and other settings.

The Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions (MSCA) provide grants for all stages of researchers’ careers – from doctoral candidates to highly experienced researchers – and encourage transnational, inter-sectoral and interdisciplinary mobility. The MSCA enable research-focused organisations (universities, research centres, and companies) to host talented foreign researchers and to create strategic partnerships with leading institutions worldwide.

The MSCA are open to all areas of research and innovation, from primary research to market take-up and innovation services. The areas of research and innovation are chosen by the applicants.

MSCA supports the principles of the European Charter for Researchers and Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers, which promotes positive working conditions for researchers and open recruitment. Equal opportunities are also supported at the level of researchers and project decision makers.

This is an open invitation to all academic colleagues across the university.


New Call: Cross-Platform Production in Digital Media


Innovate UK is to invest up to £4 million in collaborative R&D projects that stimulate innovation in the UK’s creative industries.

This competition aims to support projects that address convergence in digital media technologies. It covers film, television, online video, animation and video games, and includes pre- production, production and post- production processes, particularly for visual effects technologies.

Projects must be collaborative and led by a business. We expect to fund mainly industrial research projects. Small businesses could receive up to 70% of their eligible project costs, medium- sized businesses 60% and large businesses 50%.

We expect projects to range in size from total costs of £300,000 to £750,000, although we may consider projects outside this range.

This is a two-stage competition that opens for applicants on 9 November 2015. The deadline for expressions of interest is at noon on 6 January 2016.

There will be a briefing event for potential applicants in London on 11 November 2015.


Production is at the heart of this competition, and successful applications will address the technical challenges of producing creative content across a range of media and devices, and on different platforms. With consumers accessing content in an increasing variety of ways, we are interested in applications that address the fragmentation brought about by new devices and networks, as well as the fresh contexts in which content can be consumed. This competition also encourages exploration of the production opportunities arising from new digital technologies in audio and visual effects production.


Please click here for full details https://interact.innovateuk.org/competition-display-page/-/asset_publisher/RqEt2AKmEBhi/content/cross-platform-production-in-digital-media

If you are interested please let n.arblaster@staffs.ac.uk know ASAP



Personalised Diabetes Education and Care Plan – a systemic approach

A new Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) competition is being launched by the Scottish Government and Scottish Diabetes Group, in association with Scottish Enterprise, Innovate UK and NHS Scotland, to find innovative new solutions focused on diabetes education and mobile health.

The competition will have two phases.

Award: Up to £150,000

Opens: 19 Oct 2015, 00:00

Registration closes: 30 Dec 2015, 12:00

Closes: 06 Jan 2016, 12:00

Phase 1 is intended to show the technical feasibility of the proposed concept. The development contracts placed will be for a maximum of 6 months and up to £30,000 (inc. VAT) per project. A total of up to £150k (inc VAT) is allocated to phase 1.

Phase 2 contracts are intended to develop and evaluate prototypes or demonstrators from the more promising technologies in Phase 1, and it is anticipated that funding will be up to £150,000 (inc VAT) per project. A total of up to £300k (inc VAT) is allocated to Phase 2 . At this stage contracts will be let for Phase 1 only.

Phase 2 is dependent upon successful completion of Phase 1 and may be awarded to selected Phase 1 contractors.

Applicants should state their goals and outline plan for Phase 2, as an explicit part of the path to full commercial implementation, in their Phase 1 proposal.

Click here for the full competition brief https://interact.innovateuk.org/competition-display-page/-/asset_publisher/RqEt2AKmEBhi/content/personalised-diabetes-education-and-care-a-systemic-approach

If you are interested in this call please contact: n.arblaster@staffs.ac.uk



Erasmus + Deadlines Announced

ALERT!!! 2016 application deadlines announced

The European Commission has released the 2016 application deadlines for Erasmus+.

All the deadlines and information on the types of activities you can apply for are contained in the 2016 Call for Proposals document and the 2016 Programme Guide both of which you can download from our Key Resources page.

The Call for Proposals is an overview document containing all the deadlines for 2016, while the Programme Guide contains all the detailed information on how to apply for Erasmus+ funding. You will need to read both documents when planning an application. Please note that as of 20 October 2015, there is a discrepancy between the Call for Proposals and the Programme Guide in terms of the deadline for Strategic Partnerships applications for education and training projects. We are seeking clarification from the European Commission on which is the correct date, and will update our website once the date is confirmed.

We would also recommend that you bookmark our funding deadlines page which will be kept up-to-date with any changes in the coming weeks.

Please contact us for further information on how we can support your Erasmus + application. Email us at: researchservices@staffs.ac.uk