How MRC selects peer reviewers - MRC

MRC programme managers work closely with Expert External Referee Selectors (EERS) to select independent expert reviewers to review most of our grant and fellowship applications. This excludes some managed mode funding opportunities, which are reviewed by a panel of experts. EERS are qualified scientists with experience of nationally and internationally-competitive research relevant to MRC’s remit.

If you are interested in becoming an EERS:

Email: rfpd@mrc.ukri.org

We aim for three reviews for each application. More reviews may be sought for larger-scale, more complex or interdisciplinary applications. Sometimes it may not be possible to obtain three external reviews due to pressures on the academic community. With the support of our expert board and panel members, a funding decision will be taken if there is sufficient evidence.

A balance of expert reviewer opinions is sought to cover the different aspects of the application, which typically relate to:

  • scientific understanding and rationale
  • technical aspects of the application
  • medical need and relevance
  • deliverability and project plan.

An appropriate balance of national and international reviewers is sought, as is a gender diversity balance.

Reviewers are expected to have established expertise based on peer recognition and publication record, a strong track record in the research area and appropriate seniority to review the application.

Reviewers should not have a conflict of interest with the application. If a conflict of interest is declared that influences or is seen to influence the outcome, the review will not be used in the assessment process.

Last updated: 14 July 2022

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