Funding competition Innovation Scholars secondments: biomedical sciences, strand 1

UKRI invites applications for individuals from any discipline wishing to spend up to 36 months (full or part time) on secondment in the biomedical sciences sector.

Start new application

Or sign in to continue an existing application.

Competition sections

Description

UKRI invites applications for individuals from any discipline wishing to spend up to 36 months (full or part time) on secondment in the biomedical sciences sector. We are running 3 identical streams, which open on the same date but have different close dates:

  • strand 1 (this stream) closing 15 April 2020
  • strand 2 closing 13 May 2020
  • strand 3 closing 1 July 2020

You must choose the strand that gives you enough time to complete your application. If you do not submit your application before the close date of one of the earlier streams you will have to re-enter all the information in your application for a later strand.

The objectives of the call are to:

  • create porosity between sectors by enabling career mobility
  • boost the skills, knowledge and career development of people
  • intensify knowledge exchange between the biomedical industry and academia
  • add value to the Biomedical Sciences sector and the UK economy by increasing productivity

Proposals can come from any discipline but either the seconding or host organisation must be a business within the biomedical sciences sector (such as pharmaceutical, biotech, devices, biomedical engineering or diagnostics).

This people-focused competition will achieve its objectives by supporting secondments to fund any activity that enhances the skills of, or provides career development for, the secondee and benefits the organisations involved. The secondee must work on an activity that works towards solving challenges within the secondment (host) environment.

The competition closes at midday UK time on the deadline stated.

Funding type

Grant

Project size

The seconding organisation can apply for up to £300,000 grant per secondment

Eligibility

State aid

Any UK business claiming funding must be eligible to receive state aid at the time we confirm you will be awarded funding. It is not possible to award grant funding to organisations meeting the condition known as undertakings in difficulty. If you are unsure please take legal advice. For further information see our general guidance on state aid.

The secondment

The secondment can be up to 36 months in duration and can be full-time or part-time. The secondment time can be used flexibly over the 36 months. There is no specific minimum but we expect the secondment’s duration to be sensible and realistic.

It is expected that the secondment will start by 1 September 2020.

At least one of the organisations involved must be a business undertaking biomedical sciences research and innovation, such as pharmaceutical, biotech, devices, biomedical engineering and/or diagnostics.

Part of the secondment must be based in a facility or laboratory in the UK.

Lead organisation

Proposals must be made by the organisation that will receive and control the funds. It is expected this will be the seconding organisation (the normal employer of the secondee).

Due to the nature of these activities it is expected that the seconding and host organisations will collaborate closely on the preparation of the proposal. At least one individual from each organisation involved must be named on the application form.

Secondment costs

The seconding organisation can apply for up to £300,000 grant per secondment. There is no minimum request for funding.

During the secondment the secondee will continue to be employed by the seconding organisation.

Your application must include all costs that the seconding organisation expects UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) to fund. UKRI will only fund the secondee’s:

  • direct salary costs
  • National Insurance
  • superannuation (not including bonuses or awards)
  • travel and subsistence costs, including accommodation

The seconding organisation and host are responsible for all costs of hosting the applicant, including training, equipment, consumables and overheads. You must include details of both organisations’ contributions in your application, including any direct financial support and in-kind support to the project.

Secondee

Secondees must be:

  • resident in the UK
  • in employment within their organisation (seconding organisation) for the duration of the proposed project
  • named under the seconding organisation in the application

Where the secondee is the holder of a visa to work that visa must allow the secondee to undertake the activity proposed. It is the responsibility of the secondee to check with their employer that they are eligible to undertake the activity in line with their visa category and conditions.

This call will not fund international working. The host organisation must have a suitable secondment environment in the UK, although UKRI may fund some international travel if it is justified.

The secondee can be at any career stage. Within academic institutions UKRI will consider postdoctoral researchers, if they have permission of their supervisor or department to apply. A doctoral qualification is not a requirement, but secondees must have relevant experience within their field. We encourage applications from clinically qualified individuals.

Seconding organisation

This is the organisation sending the secondee.

The seconding organisation must:

  • lead the application and claim grant
  • be ‘research and innovation active’
  • hold a UK bank account

Before activity starts, the host and seconding organisation must provide a draft collaboration agreement and upload it to question 5.

Host organisation

This is the organisation receiving the secondee. The host can not claim grant and must apply as a non grant claiming partner.

Your application must propose a placement within a single host organisation.

Your proposal must show benefit for the host organisation and secondee.

Organisations that agree to host multiple projects must have the resources to support them all if funded.

UKRI application checks

If your application is not in scope or does not fit our eligibility criteria it will be immediately rejected and will not be sent for assessment.

The Innovation Scholars secondments call has been created to fund activity that would not be possible through other UKRI mechanisms. If UKRI determines that a project would be better supported through another scheme the application may be rejected and redirected. This will be done in consultation with you.

Test for public funding

There must be clearly articulated benefits on both sides of the secondment (the secondee and the organisation they are seconded into as a minimum). If the project could be achieved by paying for a service or by consultancy or a contract it may fail the test for public funding.

Resubmissions

You cannot use a resubmission to apply for this competition.

Failure to exploit

If you applied to a previous competition as the lead or sole organisation and were awarded funding by Innovate UK or UK Research and Innovation, but did not make a substantial effort to exploit that award, we will award no more funding to you, in this or any other competition. You will not be able to contest our decision. We will:

  • assess your efforts in the previous competition against your exploitation plan for that project
  • review the monitoring officers’ reports and any other relevant sources for evidence
  • document our decision, which will be made by 3 team members, and communicate it to you in writing

Previous projects

Under the terms of Innovate UK funding, you must submit an independent accountant’s report (IAR) with your final claim. If you or any organisation in your consortium failed to submit an IAR on a previous project, we will not award funding to you in this or any other competition until we have received the documents.

Funding

UKRI has allocated up to £10 million (04 Feb: funding increased from £5 million to £10 million) to fund innovation projects across the 3 streams.

This competition provides state aid funding under article 25, of the General Block Exemption Regulation (GBER). It is your responsibility to make sure your organisation is eligible to receive state aid.

Organisations that are primarily engaged in commercial or economic activity (known as selective advantage) as part of the project must ensure their request for funding does not exceed the limits defined below. This includes organisations that typically act non-economically but for the purpose of this project will be undertaking commercial or economic activity.

For fundamental research projects, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:

  • up to 100% if you are a micro or small business
  • up to 100% if you are a medium-sized business
  • up to 100% if you are a large business

For feasibility studies and industrial research projects, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:

  • up to 70% if you are a micro or small business
  • up to 60% if you are a medium-sized business
  • up to 50% if you are a large business

For experimental development projects which are nearer to market, you could get funding for your eligible project costs of:

  • up to 45% if you are a micro or small business
  • up to 35% if you are a medium-sized business
  • up to 25% if you are a large business

Research Organisations

The research organisations undertaking non-economic activity as part of this activity can claim up to 100% of the total eligible project costs.

Scope

Your project must:
  • boost the skills, knowledge and career development of people
  • have a long-lasting effect on your organisations that can be linked to the movement of people

The secondee must spend their time in the host organisation on a project or activities that works towards solving challenges or problems within the host organisation. This people-focused call will achieve its objectives by supporting secondments to fund any activity that:

  • enhances the skills of, or provides career development for, the secondee
  • benefits the organisations involved

The use of animals

If you propose to use animals as part of your project you must follow the use of animals guidance.

Specific themes

Your project can address one or more of the following:

  • intensify knowledge exchange between the biomedical industry and academia
  • add value to the Biomedical Sciences sector and the UK economy by increasing productivity

Research categories

We will fund fundamental research, feasibility projects, industrial research projects and experimental development projects, as defined in the guidance on categories of research.

Projects we will not fund

We are not funding international working.
31 January 2020
Competition opens
17 February 2020
Online briefing event: join at 4pm
15 April 2020 12:00pm
Competition closes
8 June 2020
Applicants notified

Before you start

You must read the guidance on applying for a competition on the Innovation Funding Service before you start.

Innovate UK is unable to award grant funding to organisations meeting the condition known as undertakings in difficulty.

Due to the nature of these activities it is expected that the seconding and host organisations will collaborate closely on the preparation of the proposal. A minimum of one individual from each organisation involved must be named on the application form. The secondee must also be named.

What we ask you

The application is split into 3 sections:

1.Project details.

2.Application questions.

3.Finances.

Assessment

Proposals will be assessed at a panel meeting according to the assessment criteria. The Panel will comprise both independent academic and industry experts.

The Panel will make funding recommendations to UKRI via a ranked list of the proposals, which UKRI will use to fund the projects that best meet the aims of the call within the available budget.

Applicants will be given feedback from the panel summarising the reasons why the proposal was successful or unsuccessful. No further feedback will be available.

1. Project details

This section provides background for the assessors and is not scored.

Project summary

Describe your project briefly, and be clear about what makes it innovative. We use this section to assign experts to assess your application.

Your answer can be up to 400 words long.

Public description

Describe your project in detail, and in a way that you are happy to see published. Do not include any commercially sensitive information. If we award your project funding, we will publish this description. This could happen before you start your project.

Your answer can be up to 400 words long.

2. Application questions

The assessors will score your answers. You will receive feedback from them for each one.

Your answer to each question can be up to 600 words long. Do not include any website addresses (URLs) in your answers.

1. Challenge

Vision and challenge of proposed work and how it will contribute to the call objectives.

  • the vision/objectives of the proposed work
  • the challenges that the project will meet and that the people engaged in it will solve
  • this should be explained in the context of the organisations involved and/or the broader sector or community
  • clearly state how you will meet some or all the objectives of the Innovation Scholars Secondment Call
2. Secondee

Suitability of secondee including added value.

  • evidence of the capability of the secondee to effectively undertake and deliver against the vision and aims of the activity and realise the desired outcomes and impacts
  • evidence of the value that will be added to the secondee and how their participation will aid them in their career

You must submit a copy of the secondees CV as an appendix. It must be a PDF and can be up to 2 pages long. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.

3. Environment

The suitability of the environment of the host organisation.

  • evidence of the suitability of the host (secondment) environment for the undertaking of the proposed activity
  • evidence of appropriate support for the secondee in the host (secondment) environment with respect to the fulfilment of the vison and outcome of the activity

4. Impact

The benefits the project will have to participants and the broader impact.

  • proposals must demonstrate impact in terms of benefit to the secondee and organisations involved in the secondment. As a minimum there must be a benefit to both the secondee and host organisation
  • proposals should articulate wider benefits that might be realised, these should be specific, realistic and discussed in the context of organisational strategy

5. Activity

Resources, Plan, Costs, Risks and Mitigation.

  • the appropriateness of the resources requested. In-kind or direct support from participating organisations will be taken into consideration if it is clearly listed and confirmed
  • the suitability of the plan for achieving the vision and objectives of the activity. Including management, monitoring and an appreciation of any risks and how they will be managed

You must submit a draft collaboration agreement as an appendix. It must be a PDF and can be up to 2 pages long. The font must be legible at 100% zoom.

3. Finances

Each organisation in your project must complete their own project costs, organisation details and funding details in the application. Academic institutions must complete and upload a Je-S form.

Research organisations will be awarded 100% of costs where State aid legislation does not apply.

For full details on what costs you can claim see our project costs guidance.

Extra help

Extra help

If you need more information about the requirements for this competition, contact Innovationscholars@ukri.org

If you want help to find a project partner, contact the Knowledge Transfer Network.

If you need more information about how to apply email support@innovateuk.ukri.org or call 0300 321 4357 between 9am and 5:30pm, Monday to Friday.

Further information

Equality, diversity and inclusion

Equality, diversity and inclusion enrich diversity of thought, build stronger perspectives and performance within organisations and communities and foster more innovative and creative approaches. UKRI expects that host organisations consider diversity broadly to include background, career path, thought and approach as well as protected characteristics. The long-term strength of the UK research base depends on harnessing all the available talent. UKRI expects that equality and diversity are embedded at all levels and in all aspects of research and innovation practice and funding policy. We are committed to supporting the research community, offering a range of flexible options that allow applicants to design a package that fits their goals, career and personal circumstances. This includes support for people with caring responsibilities. We welcome applications from people who job share, have a part-time contract, or need flexible working arrangements. We are committed to ensuring that fairness is fully reflected in all our funding processes by advancing policy which supports equality, diversity and inclusion.

Conditions of work

All secondees must adhere to their employer’s and the host organisation’s requirements of independence from direct commercial interest. Secondees will need to adhere to any necessary confidentiality agreement, which should specify knowledge and data that are the property of the organisations involved, and any discussions taking place during the project that cannot be disclosed without prior written agreement of the host organisation. Agreements should be agreed, signed and in place prior to the start of the project.

Reporting and evaluation

Funded secondees will be required to report on the outcomes of their work and the effectiveness of the Innovations Scholars Secondments Pilot in helping achieve their goals.

Need help with this service? Contact us