The Outstanding Team Impact prize celebrates an inspiring and successful team whose collaborative team science approach has made a major impact in medical research.
The prize rewards teams who bring together researchers and skilled specialists with diverse scientific backgrounds, skills and perspectives to address complex and pressing human health and research challenges.
This prize celebrates the successes of teams of at least two different research groups that must be composed of a diverse range of team members.
The prize recognises the essential contributions made by all those participating in research.
Nominations will be accepted from representatives of:
- higher education institutions (HEIs)
- independent research organisations (IROs)
- other organisations that are currently eligible to receive UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) funding or have previously received it
The winning team will:
- receive a financial award of up to £20,000 which must be put towards further learning and development of the team or further advancing or showcasing the teams’ impact, for example at conferences, networks and forums. The financial award will only be payable to a host organisation, not directly to individuals
- be presented with a trophy and financial award, and have their team science activities showcased at a dedicated Medical Research Council (MRC) awards ceremony in spring 2024
- have future opportunities to present their team science initiative via other UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) or MRC-led events and forums
Who you can nominate
Only representatives of HEIs, IROs and other organisations that have previously received or that are currently eligible to receive UKRI funding are eligible to submit a nomination.
To be eligible for the prize, funding from MRC or the Medical Research Foundation must have provided a contributing factor to the advancement of the impact. This could be through a proportion of the team:
- receiving grant funding
- holding PhD studentships or fellowships
- being based within an MRC centre, unit or institute
It is not a requirement for all team members to have received funding from MRC or the Medical Research Foundation, but the funding must have played a significant part in enabling the impact.
There is a one year resubmission policy. The team can only be put forward for the Outstanding Team Impact prize once every two years.
The nomination can be made for a team that has made a major impact in medical research, whose collaborative team science approach including a diverse range of team members were critical in the delivery and success of the impact.
We are looking to reward impacts led by a team or network composed of at least two research groups. Teams and networks must consist of a diverse range of members at a minimum spanning:
- career stages
- job roles
It would be desirable to additionally include team members spanning:
- research organisations
- geographical locations
We strongly encourage nominations to include a diversity of career stages and members critical to enabling research and innovation who are not traditionally well recognised within research. Team members can include, but are not limited to:
- pre- and postdoctoral researchers
- data scientists
- research administrators
- laboratory and facility managers
- instrument engineers
- finance managers
- clinical and industrial partners
- public and patient representatives
- other critical roles in enabling research, innovation and development
There is no limit on the number of members of the team, but the nomination must clearly highlight how a collaborative team science approach and the broad diversity of skills and expertise of a diverse range of team members were critical for the success of the impact. Please note that applications that do not nominate or evidence the contributions of a diverse range of team members, for example by nominating only the principal investigators, will not be accepted.
Equality, diversity and inclusion
We are committed to equality, diversity and inclusion. We especially encourage nominations for people who are currently under-represented in some sectors of the research and innovation community and in our previous prize nominees. This includes:
- those with a disability
- members of minority ethnic groups
Organisations are permitted to submit a maximum of two nominations per year. If two are submitted, at least one nomination must be for a diverse team which includes individuals who identify as being from at least one of the mentioned groups.
What we are looking to reward
We expect nominated teams to be a group of individuals whose collaborative approach has made an outstanding contribution in medical research that was made possible due to a team science approach.
The impact for which the team is nominated must have been achieved as a result of the combined efforts of a team from at least two research groups that bring together a diverse range of expertise and skills to tackle complex health challenges.
By impact, we mean transformative and innovative ideas which are advancing the specified medical research area in the UK and internationally, for example by:
- advancing science
- enabling clinical translation
- commercial impact
- influencing policy and practice
- advocacy and improving research culture
The team must have fostered an open, positive and inclusive working culture where all team members’ contributions were recognised, rewarded and valued.
How to make a nomination
Only representatives of HEIs, IROs and other organisations who have previously received or who are eligible to receive UKRI funding can submit nominations.
Nominations open on 24 April 2023 for 10 weeks.
To make a nomination you will need to complete the information in the Outstanding Team Impact nomination portal (SurveyMonkey) and upload:
- a completed MRC Impact Prize Outstanding Team Impact nomination form
- a completed nominee details form which must be individually completed by each individual team member listed in the nomination
- up to two letters of support
We must receive your completed nomination by 30 June 2023 at 4:00pm UK time.
Please note that while the nomination must be submitted by a single eligible institution, we expect nominations to be for a diverse team which can include members from across sectors, disciplines, geographical locations or organisations.
The nomination form must detail:
- the activity for which the team is nominated, including the significance and extent of the demonstrated impact
- how a collaborative team science approach, composed of members from across a broad diversity of disciplines, organisations, sectors or career stages, was critical in realising the impact. Please outline the contributory roles of each individual in the team, highlighting how the diverse set of skills, knowledge and attributes were vital for the success of the activity
- how the nominees worked together as a team and fostered a positive, open and inclusive working culture where the contributions of all team members were recognised, valued and rewarded
- the nature of funding from MRC or the Medical Research Foundation, and how it was key in enabling the impact
- a description of how the financial award would be utilised (including indicative costs) to enable the further development of the team or to further advance or showcase the initiative to others, for example by attending and presenting at conferences
The nomination form must have been endorsed by a member of the institution’s senior management team, at a minimum level of:
- the Dean or Head of School for HEIs
- the Director or Head of Research for IROs, or equivalent
The form must include an explanation of the local process that led to the selection of the nominees from a diverse pool of researchers, taking into account equality, diversity and inclusion and mitigation of bias during the selection process.
Letters of support
These should be no more than one side of A4 each and should be in size 11 Arial font.
You should provide no more than two letters of support on headed paper. These can be from a senior member of the primary contact’s institution or other individuals who can provide a supporting statement for the achievements of the team.
The letters should detail the relationship with the team and clearly explain the reasons why they should receive an MRC Impact Prize. Please refer to the whole team in the letters of support.
How we will assess nominations
A dedicated MRC Prize Committee oversees the MRC Impact Prize.
The committee is chaired by the MRC Executive Chair and is comprised of 24 members from across:
- MRC boards, panels and overview groups
- MRC strategy board
- MRC council
- industry and external representation
The committee will review and score nominations against the following areas:
- the extent and significance of the impact in improving medical research
- how important a collaborative team science approach including a diverse range of team members was critical in the delivery and success of the impact
- how well the team worked together and fostered an open, inclusive and respectful working culture
The committee will review and score nominations and select the highly commended and winning entries who will be announced in December 2023. The prize will be awarded at an MRC awards ceremony in spring 2024.
For more information contact the MRC Impact Prize team.