2018-2021 Call Specification: Invite only

Tranche 4

ESRC and DFID are pleased to announce that Tranche 4 of the RLO Follow-on Fund 2018- 2021 call is open to all RLO Principal Investigators and Co-Investigators, both past and present. The call is focussed on impact enhancement, research augmentation, capacity building (workstreams 1-3) and cross-grant synthesis (workstream 4) activities, which build on their existing RLO grant.

This invitation-only call will be open twice a year, in bi-annual tranches (usually opened every six months) for the next two years. The fourth bi-annual tranche will open 12 May 2020 and close 16:00 (UK time) on 22 September 2020. In response to the impact of the COVID 19 pandemic on research and the research community, the fourth tranche of this call will be open for a longer period than previous tranches. It is intended that the final tranche will open in May 2021, however the timing of remaining tranches will continue to be reviewed in response to the evolving situation regarding the global pandemic. Up to £2 million has been allocated for the length of the call.

The call is open to any Principal Investigator (PI) or Co-Investigator (Co-I) who has held a research grant funded within the RLO programme. Co-Is who wish to apply as a PI to this Follow-on Fund call must have the express support of their original RLO grant’s PI.The original grant can be open or closed at the point that the application(s) are made and they will be awarded as separate grant(s) to the existing/completed RLO grant. Any researcher who has not been a PI or Co-I on an RLO-funded grant is not eligible to apply. All uninvited or ineligible applications will be rejected.

In workstreams 1-3 (impact enhancement, research augmentation, capacity building) proposals are invited for grants with a full economic cost (fEC) value of between £25,000 and £100,000 for either workstream, or for any combination of these three workstreams. Researchers are eligible to apply for a number of these grants, on multiple occasions, however the total amount of all awarded grants linked to the original proposal must not in sum exceed £100,000. Note that whilst cross-grant learning (where appropriate for inclusion) will be viewed positively in workstream 1 to 3, it is not a requirement for these workstreams and proposals within these workstreams must stand alone i.e. they cannot be co/inter dependent.

In workstream 4 (cross-grant synthesis) proposals are invited from RLO researchers working in collaboration with other RLO grants. These proposals must also have a fEC value of between £25,000 and £100,000. Researchers can also apply for a number of these grants, on multiple occasions, and can collaborate with different projects in these applications. The funders are keen to encourage applications to workstream 4. Therefore in addition to the maximum of £100k allocable per grant in workstreams 1-3, a further £100k may be allocated to original RLO grants against workstream 4 (this makes a maximum of £200k across all 4 workstreams).

Projects may be up to a maximum of 2 years in duration. The call has been designed so that all grants will get an equal chance to access this additional funding if and when they are ready to do so.  Proposals can be submitted at any point whilst each tranche of the call is open, but will not be assessed until the submission window has closed.
The full specification and other important call-specific guidance documents can be found below:

Please note that in January 2020 UK Research and Innovation announced changes to requirements on ‘Pathways to Impact’. Applicants will no longer be required to provide a separate ‘Pathways to Impact’ plan or complete an ‘Impact Summary’ within grant proposals from 1 March 2020.

All proposals to Tranche 4 must be submitted through the Je-S system by 16:00 (UK time) on 22 September 2020.