Funding opportunity

Funding opportunity: Collaborate with researchers in Norway

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and Research Council of Norway (RCN) have signed a Money Follows Cooperation agreement to reduce barriers to cross-border collaboration.

This enables eligible UK principal investigators to submit collaborative applications with co-investigators employed by Norwegian institutions.

This agreement enables Norway co-investigators to be included in UK-led applications and to receive funding from the participating UKRI Councils.

General conditions and budget available will differ depending on the funding opportunity to which an application is being submitted.

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Who can apply

Applications must be submitted via the participating research council’s funding opportunity.

You must be an eligible principal investigator employed by a UK research organisation eligible to receive funding from the participating research councils:

  • AHRC
  • EPSRC
  • ESRC
  • MRC
  • NERC

Depending on the UKRI research council, institutions eligible to receive UKRI funding may include institutions currently located outside the UK, for example:

  • MRC Unit The Gambia at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM)
  • MRC and LSHTM Uganda Research Unit
  • other UK research organisations overseas

The application’s leadership and majority of the budget is to be awarded to institutions eligible to receive UKRI funding.

Check if your institution is eligible for funding.

UK researchers

The UK principal investigator must meet the participating research council’s eligibility criteria for the specific funding opportunity to which an application is being submitted.

Norway researchers

A Norway co-investigator is an individual employed by a research organisation in Norway. They must fit the normal definition of a co-investigator on a research project, assisting the grant holder in the management and leadership of the project.

The co-investigator is usually expected to make a major intellectual contribution to the design and conduct of the project.

The international research organisation must be of comparable status and standing to a UKRI-recognised UK institution.

Further guidance

You should refer to the specific participating research council’s guidance to applicants and funding opportunity guidance for further information on eligibility and application submission.

For further information on participating UKRI research council’s guidance to applicants, please see:

What we're looking for

The majority of funding opportunities from each of the participating UKRI research councils (AHRC, ESRC, MRC, EPSRC and NERC) are eligible for the inclusion of Norway co-investigators. This agreement enables Norway co-investigators to be included in UK-led applications and to receive funding from the participating UKRI research councils.

The inclusion of Norway co-investigators is permitted in funding opportunities open to the inclusion of co-investigators that:

  • do not expressly forbid international collaboration
  • do not provide alternative support for international co-investigators

General conditions and budget available will differ depending on the funding opportunity to which an application is being submitted.

Collaborative research applications led by UK researchers, involving Norway co-investigators, may be submitted in any disciplinary or interdisciplinary area which falls within the remit of the participating research councils.

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You should consult the specific funding opportunity guidance or the specific research council’s guidance to applicants for information on eligible funding opportunities. Conditions will vary depending on research council and funding opportunity to which an application is being submitted.

You should refer to the ‘contact’ section for key contact details of each of the participating research councils.

Costs we cover

UKRI covers the following costs of Norway co-investigators involved in project applications led by UK principal investigators, according to its applicable regulations.

Directly incurred costs

For example, travel and subsistence costs, conference attendance.

This component will be assessed in the context of the application as a whole and the justification of resources.

Travel and subsistence costs for Norway co-investigators are required to be reasonable and fully justified in accordance with the applicable participating research council guidelines.

Applicants may apply for funds to cover other directly incurred costs (for example, consumables, consultancy fees, survey costs and equipment costing less than £10,000), provided they are fully justified.

For some participating research councils, ‘other directly incurred costs’ will include further possible costs and have specific requirements, if these costs are to be incurred by the Norway co-investigator.

Research assistants based in Norway

For example, salary costs for research assistants employed at a Norwegian institution or seconded from a UK institution.

Applicants may apply for funds to cover the cost of a research assistant based in Norway to support research activities in Norway.

Where the research assistant is recruited and employed by a Norwegian institution to support the Norway co-investigator, direct costs will be paid at 100%.

In cases where a research assistant is employed by a UK institution but seconded to Norway, costs will be paid at 80%.

Salary costs

UKRI covers salary costs for Norway co-investigators, provided that these costs are justified and it is demonstrated that the funding of investigator salaries within research grants is the standard practice of the Norway co-investigator’s institution.

Alternative arrangements to secure researcher time, such as teaching replacement costs, will be considered where these are required by the Norway co-investigator’s institution.

UK institutions preparing applications for submission are strongly advised to liaise closely with the Norway co-investigators named on the application to ascertain any requirement for salary costs.

Salary costs requested for the Norway co-investigator must be justified within the ‘Justification of Resources’ section of the application.

Infrastructure and facilities

UK applicants budgeting for the use of large infrastructure or facilities, should, where possible, use UK large infrastructure or facilities when applying to UKRI funding.

Costs we do not cover

The following costs of Norway co-investigators are not eligible:

Estates and other indirect costs

Since institutions outside the UK do not use the Transparent Approach to Costing methodology, it is not possible for UKRI to check and monitor the calculation of estates, overheads and indirect costs in Norwegian institutions.

For these reasons UKRI research councils will not consider any estates, overheads or indirect costs pertaining to Norway co-investigators.

Equipment

Any individual item, or components combined to make an item, with a value greater than £10,000.

Cost of the project

For the Money Follows Cooperation principle to be applied, the contribution and added value of the international participants to the research must be clearly explained and justified in the application.

Justified costs for Norway co-investigators will be funded at 100%. However, the total costs claimed for the Norway co-investigator contribution to a project must not exceed 30% of the overall cost of the project, calculated at 100% full economic cost. Applicants who include Norway co-investigators must fully justify the associated costs within the ‘Justification of Resources’ section of the application.

Under this agreement, more than 1 Norway co-investigator may be involved in an application to an eligible funding opportunity. However, the combined funding incurred by the Norway co-investigators must not exceed 30% of the overall cost of the project, calculated at 100% full economic cost.

Depending on the participating research council and funding opportunity, other international co-investigators may also be eligible for inclusion in an application. Where this is the case, the combined total costs requested for the international co-investigators (including those incurred by the Norway co-investigators) must not exceed 30% of the overall cost of the project (full economic cost).

All costs must be specifically justified. Applicants must explain why such costs are required to achieve the aims of the research project, with an appropriate explanation of which costs in the application relate to the Norway co-investigators. Each budget line requested for Norway co-investigators should be itemised, as noted in annex 1: Je-S application process document (PDF, 153KB).

Award payments

UKRI will pay the award directly to the lead UK organisation under its standard terms and conditions. The UK organisation where the UK principal investigator is based will then be responsible for disbursing the funds to the Norway co-investigators.

You should refer to the ‘contact’ section for key contact details of each of the participating research councils.

How to apply

Submitting your application

Applications can be submitted at any time to specific funding opportunities with no closing date.

Applications to specific funding opportunities with a closing date will only be accepted to opportunities opening after 3 November 2022.

Before submitting an application to collaborate with an eligible Norway co-investigator, you should review the specific funding opportunity guidance to which an application is being submitted.

If submitting an application via a MRC funding opportunity you should contact the relevant MRC programme manager to discuss your intention to include a Norway co-investigator. Further information on who to contact can be found on:

You must apply using the Joint Electronic Submission (Je-S) system.

UKRI is currently working towards developing a new funding system to replace Je-S. Although a launch date has not been announced, some future funding opportunities will use this upcoming system. This guidance will be updated accordingly in due time.

Guidance

You can find advice on completing your application in:

There are some differences in the Je-S format between participating UKRI research councils. You should ensure the relevant guidelines and requirements for the individual research council covering the remit of your research are followed.

You should begin the application title with ‘UKRI-Norway:’ in the Je-S proforma. Guidance on how to complete the Je-S application process with a Norway co-investigator can be found in annex 1: Je-S application process document (PDF, 153KB).

Deadline

General conditions, deadlines and budget available will differ depending on the funding opportunity to which an application is being submitted. You should refer to the funding opportunity guidance to which an application is being submitted.

You should ensure you are aware of and follow any internal institutional deadlines that may be in place.

How we will assess your application

UKRI funds research on a competitive basis employing independent expert peer review. This system is regarded as an international benchmark of excellence in research funding, and this provides a guarantee of the quality of UK research.

The criteria of assessment will depend on the individual UKRI research council and funding opportunity the application is submitted to. Applications will be evaluated according to normal UKRI procedures, plus any specific criteria set out in the funding opportunity to which an application is being submitted.

Contact details

Get help with developing your proposal

For help and advice on costings and writing your proposal please contact your research office in the first instance, allowing sufficient time for your organisation’s submission process.

Ask about this funding opportunity

General enquiries regarding the submission of applications under the UKRI-RCN Money Follows Cooperation agreement, should be submitted to the respective participating research council to which an application is being submitted. Please include ‘UKRI-Norway Agreement’ in the subject line.

AHRC

Email: international@ahrc.ukri.org

EPSRC

Email: international@epsrc.ukri.org

ESRC

Email: international@esrc.ukri.org

MRC

Email: international@mrc.ukri.org

NERC

Email: international@nerc.ukri.org

Get help with applying through Je-S

Email

jeshelp@je-s.ukri.org

Telephone

01793 444164

Opening times

Je-S helpdesk opening times

Additional info

Background

UKRI and RCN have signed a Money Follows Cooperation (MFC) agreement to foster collaboration between researchers in both countries, continuing the long history of research collaboration between the UK and Norway.

RCN and the participating UKRI research councils (AHRC, ESRC, EPSRC, MRC and NERC) have reciprocally opened their agreed national research funding opportunities to collaborative applications involving researchers from the other country to be funded as international co-investigators.

Through this agreement the inclusion of Norway co-investigators is possible in specific funding opportunities that do not expressly forbid international collaboration and do not provide alternative support for international co-investigators. General conditions and budget will differ depending on the funding opportunity to which an application is being submitted.

You may apply until the end of the MFC agreement between UKRI and RCN on 4 October 2024, unless otherwise extended. Successful projects including a Norway co-investigator that extend past the end of the MFC agreement will continue to be supported by UKRI.

Collaboration in RCN funding opportunities

Under this agreement, UK researchers are also able to take part in RCN funding opportunities as international co-investigators. UK researchers wishing to take part as international co-investigators in applications submitted to RCN should refer to RCN’s website for further information and contact details.

Data sharing

UKRI is committed to protecting personal information and will ensure appropriate safeguards are in place to protect the information supplied by the applicant. Further information is available in UKRI’s privacy notice and data protection policy.

UKRI carries out the processing of personal data in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation. The information provided by applicants will be used by UKRI for the purpose of carrying out reviewing and assessment for making a funding decision.

For administrative purposes, the results of the evaluation and methodologies used to evaluate applications will be shared between UKRI and RCN, if requested, except for confidential information. Where appropriate, UKRI will seek to involve international academics in the peer review process.

COVID-19

UKRI acknowledges that it is a challenge for applicants to determine the future impacts of COVID-19 while the pandemic continues to evolve.

Applications should be based on the information available at the point of submission and known impacts to the application should be accounted for.

Where known impacts have occurred, these should be highlighted in the application. There is no need to include contingency plans for the potential impacts of COVID-19.
Applicants must follow travel advice set out by their institutions and the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office. UKRI will not cover the cost of time spent in quarantine due to travel.

Supporting documents

Guidance for applicants (PDF, 223KB)

Guidance for applicants, annex 1: Je-S application process (PDF, 153KB)

This is the integrated website of the seven research councils, Research England and Innovate UK.
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