UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and Fonds National de la Recherche (FNR), Luxembourg, have signed a Statement of Intent (SoI) to encourage and support proposals that involve international collaborative teams.

The UKRI-FNR Statement of Intent underpins a ‘Lead Agency Agreement’ whereby the relevant UK Research Council will receive and assess collaborative proposals from eligible institutions on behalf of both organisations. However, FNR nominated experts will be involved with the peer review and decision making processes throughout.

ESRC accepts applications under the terms of the SoI to our Research Grants scheme.

Proposals to any ESRC scheme which utilises this SoI must also include an FNR Project Plan form, Budget spreadsheet and Justification Form (for costs being requested from FNR), and a Project Plan, as additional Je-S attachments (all available on the FNR website).

Collaborative research proposals may be submitted in any area of the social sciences within the remit of both the ESRC and FNR. There is no deadline, and proposals will be accepted on an ongoing basis until expiry of the SoI on 30 November 2021. Proposals should be drafted and will be assessed according to the criteria set out in the International Common Application Process.

Collaborative research proposals should be submitted only to the ESRC. which will take the lead role in processing and assessing applications, with input from the FNR. A decision on bilateral proposals will be made by ESRC's Research Committee, within its normal standard grants competition. Those proposals approved for funding will be jointly supported by the ESRC and FNR.

Applicants should note the following in preparing their application:

  • In order to receive support from FNR, the Luxembourg partners must be based at an institution eligible for their support. These are public research centres, the University of Luxembourg and public bodies, departments and establishments in Luxembourg with an authorisation to undertake research in the area of their competence.
  • Proposals should be submitted via Je-S into the Research Grants (Open Call). The costs being requested from ESRC for the UK part of the project should be a minimum of £350,000, and no more than £1,000,000 (at 100 per cent full Economic Cost). The title field of the proposal must begin with the words 'Bilateral ESRC/FNR’. In completing the Je-S form, applicants should also consult the Je-S guidance (PDF, 199Kb) on submitting an ESRC-FNR bilateral proposal.
  • Applicants are also strong advised to consult the Operational Guidance of the UKRI-FNR Lead Agency Agreement Guidance Note (UKRI website).
  • The 5,000 word proposal document described in the International Common Application Process (ICAP) criteria should be included as the 'case for support' in the Je-S application. This 5,000 word limit exceeds the normal six page limit for a case for support. A word count should be included at the end of this document.
  • All other relevant sections of the Je-S application (Objectives, Summary, Beneficiaries, etc) should also be completed in accordance with the normal guidelines for standard grants.
  • To enable the identification of all research teams members in different national application formats, the 5,000 word research proposal document should begin by listing the names, roles (principal investigator, co-investigator, etc), and institutions of all named researchers from both participating countries who are included in the proposal. This list of names is not included in the word count of the proposal document.
  • CVs of all named researchers in the proposal should be included, both UK and overseas. These should not exceed the normal ESRC limit of two pages per CV.
  • The Luxembourg-based researchers should complete the FNR-UKRI proposal form, the FNR consolidated budget spreadsheet and justification form, all available on the FNR website, which should be included as additional attachments in Je-S.