Researcher Development

Researcher Development Fund

This fund is available for projects/activities/events initiated by research associates/officers, prize fellows and doctoral students at teh University of Bath for the benefit of groups of researchers within the University and the GW4 alliance. The fund allows researchers themselves to have a greater input into the ways they are supported and developed and to complement the training and development opportunities provided centrally by the RDU.

Researchers should think creatively about initiatives that could be funded, and how they might enhance the research, personal development and career opportunities of themselves and others.

What can you apply for?

  • Training – projects, activities and events that develop generic skills of groups of researchers
  • Culture Change - projects, activities and events that improve the research environment within a group, department, faculty or the University
  • Knowledge Exchange - projects, activities and events that further the knowledge exchange of research to interested parties outside of academia e.g. mentoring, visits to industrial partners, engaging with policy makers

Examples of the types of activity which might be funded:

  • Entrepreneurial/enterprising projects
  • Collaborations with external partners
  • New links with industrial partners, policy makers, charities etc.
  • Mentoring schemes
  • Development of novel seminar(s)/conference programmes
  • Networking events
  • Development of specific local provision for researchers, e.g. provision of web-based resources
  • A training course, workshop or e-learning resource designed to meet an identified need.
  • Outreach activities, for example, with schools or the general public

If you are not sure if the idea you have fits the criteria have a look at past projects that were funded or email

Who can apply?

Research Associates/Officers, Prize fellows and doctoral students

How much can you apply for?

The maximum total amount available to any one submission is £1,000. A total of £7000 is available.

What will NOT be funded?

  • Academic conference fees/attendance
  • Research projects
  • Pilot research studies
  • Academic conferences
  • Fees for individuals to attend external training events

Deadline for applications in 2016/7

30 November 2016, 12pm

Projects must be completed and a report submitted by 30 July 2017.

How to apply?

To apply you will need to complete the application form [MS Word, 50KB].

The form requires you to include the following information:

  • The names and contact details of the individual(s) responsible for the event or activity
  • A brief description of the event or activity propose
  • The main aims and objectives of the activity
  • The desired outcomes, and how they will be evaluated
  • Its relevance to the target audience/group and the numbers in that group
  • An outline of the timescales involved
  • Breakdown of expenditure
  • Endorsement by the Head of School/Department or Associate Dean for Research or Graduate Studies.

Guidelines for applications

Applications are invited from all doctoral students and research staff/prize fellows at the University of Bath for funding to support short-term, well-defined events and projects. The following guidelines for applications are provided:

Projects that meet any of the following criteria will be looked upon more favourably:

  • The proposed activity must be of direct benefit to researchers at Bath and address local needs where appropriate
  • The activity should not duplicate events that are organised centrally e.g. via the Researcher Development Unit, RIS, Careers Advisory Service and the Academic Skills Centre.
  • The funding should only be used for the benefit of groups of researchers, with the exception of mentoring, which may benefit individuals only
  • Projects receiving match-funding e.g. from the department
  • Communication with the public/non specialists or knowledge transfer
  • Multidisciplinary work
  • Enhancing entrepreneurial/enterprise/business skills
  • The fund should not be used for direct financial assistance to individuals
  • We encourage the development of innovative, creative and non-standard approaches to skills development
  • An application form [MS Word, 50KB] should be completed for each request for funding
  • If you wish to seek advice on your draft application please contact Dr Jeanette Muller or Dr Neil Bannister.
  • The funding request should be endorsed by the Head of School/Department or Associate Dean for Research or Graduate Studies.

How will the applications be assessed?

Applications for funding will be considered in line with the funding schedule.

  1. Applications will be reviewed by the Researcher Development Unit and further reviewers that may include: members of academic staff, other central services, industrial partners.
  2. A decision will be made to fund/not to fund/to ask for more specific information, based on the following criteria:
  • Impact and innovation.
  • A clear focus to the activity proposed with specified outcomes
  • The direct benefit to groups of researchers
  • The extent to which proposals address clearly defined local needs and allow for the development of specific approaches and themes that are appropriate to the target audience.
  • The approach to evaluation and (where appropriate) dissemination of outcomes.
  • Value for money
  • Projects must be completed by 30 July 2017

Outcome of your application for funding

  1. The decision will be communicated directly to the named applicant within 6 weeks (normally less) of the application deadline.
  2. Successful applicants will be required to submit a short evaluation report within one month of completion of the initiative. It should be no longer than two pages, preferably online, and should include:
  • Background to, and brief description of, the initiative
  • Dates/venue where appropriate
  • Who benefitted from the initiative
  • A summary of the outcomes
  • Any long term impact of the initiative

Unsuccessful applications may be re-submitted, taking account of any feedback.

Researcher Development Unit
June 2016