What is the best formula for writing a successful research grant proposal? Photograph: Alamy To many academics the following account may sound familiar: "I personally spend about a third of my time writing for grants, fellowships and PhD studentships – which is time I cannot spend helping to foster ongoing experiments. I've had a few funding successes, but not enough to wholly suspend the feverish activity needed to optimize my research performance. I've had to postpone entire promising side shoots of [my] project because there is not enough time or resources to do them credit." This is the experiece of Jenny Rohn, a cell biologist at University College London, who in a recent blog for Guardian Science's Occam's Corner , wrote about administerial pressures taking over her academic career, with funding forms leaving little time for the research itself.
Planning applications in batches is the best way to recover from post-rejection blues, says Andrew Derrington. Photograph: Alamy Read the eligibility rules
29 January 2013 by Tseen Khoo Gingerbreak man (Photo by Tseen Khoo) So, you’ve lost out on the major grant rounds for last year. It only took about eight months to find out, right? Often, you’ve waited with all of your career possibilities riding on the outcome. And you got nothing.
Under-representation of women at higher levels of faculty in the biomedical sciences has long been noted. 1 However, whereas differences in representation in academic sciences are clear, less is known about disparities in important indicators of research success that might partly account for such differences, such as success in obtaining funding. 2—4 For instance, the equity of amounts awarded to male and female awardees has not been assessed. We used publicly available data from grants awarded from Oct 1, 2000, to Sept 30, 2008, by a major UK biomedical funding body, the Wellcome Trust, to assess grant funding amounts awarded to women versus men. Gender was assigned to each primary recipient on the basis of name, with consensus agreement by GB and NTVD (internet searches resolved disagreements).
Preliminary evidence appears to show that this approach to responding to referees is - on balance - probably sub-optimal. (Photo by Tseen Khoo) This post is co-authored by Adam Golberg of Cash for Questions (UK), and Jonathan O’Donnell and Tseen Khoo of The Research Whisperer (Australia).
Research funders should avoid “micromanaging” research and requiring applicants to set out the impact of their proposals, according to the president of the Royal Society. Sir Paul Nurse used his annual Anniversary Address today to urge funders to pay more attention to the quality of applicants than to the details of their proposals. “The objective is not to simply support those that write good quality grant proposals but those that will actually carry out good quality research,” he said. He said applicants should be assessed on the basis of their past performance – or, for early career researchers, by a face-to-face interview. “The greater costs involved in direct interviews will be more than compensated by the greater quality of the decisions that will be made,” he said.