The Second Reader of a grant application is an independent member of staff (usually an academic staff member of the Department) who is external to the project.

The Principal Investigator (PI) will pass the proposal and the Ethical Implications of Research Activity (EIRA) 1 form to the Second Reader for them to read and ensure that the application is correctly completed and the ethical implications have been identified and reviewed.

The Second Reader will:

  • ensure that policies and guidelines developed by the University in relation to research applications are followed
  • have a broad understanding of the research topic
  • have the ability to identify ethical implications arising from the research and independence to challenge the PI’s view. There should be no conflict of interest with the application
  • be able to judge the level of scrutiny necessary to assess higher level ethical implications and know where to refer the research application where ethically contentious issues are identified
  • have knowledge of current nationally-agreed ethical codes for relevant professional associations where appropriate
  • resist pressure to carry out the role of Second Reader where the timescale does not permit proper scrutiny of the grant application

Approval date: June 2013
Approved by: University Ethics Committee