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Non-financial questions

The notes below respond to common non-financial questions. Some guidance applies only to particular schemes – we have indicated where this is the case.

1. What is the Trust’s definition of an independent referee?

A referee may not come from the same institution as that of an applicant or co-applicant, and each referee should come from a different institution from each other. The referee should not be formally connected with the proposed project.

Applies to: all schemes that request referees (except Study Abroad Studentships)

2. Can a referee be based in an overseas institution?


Applies to: all schemes that request referees

3. Can I employ someone who does not have a PhD?

Yes, providing that they have the relevant experience for the role. However, if the person you have identified is currently completing a PhD please ensure his or her thesis has been submitted before starting work on the project. Anyone registered for PhD studies during the award would only be eligible for fees and maintenance, not for a salary.

Applies to: Research Project Grants and Major Research Fellowships

4. If I cannot start work on the project on the date given in my application, would the Trust agree to a delayed start date?

Yes. However, the Trust does not normally allow for delays of over six months.

Applies to: Research Project Grants

5. Can I employ several researchers all working part-time on the project?

Yes, providing at least one is working for at least fifty per cent of the time in each grant year.

Applies to: Research Project Grants

6. Can I request funds for a PhD student registered overseas?

No, PhD students registered overseas are not permitted.

Applies to: Research Project Grants

7. Can I employ a local researcher?

Yes, a local researcher can be employed where the research is taking place outside the UK and it is more appropriate to employ personnel local to the area, rather than to employ a UK-based researcher to travel to the region.

Applies to: all schemes

8. Does the Trust have a policy on open access publishing?

Yes, the Trust Board has resolved to make no stipulations regarding mandatory archiving or open access publication for Leverhulme grant holders.

Applies to: all schemes

9. Is it possible to get an extension to the 9-month submission deadline for detailed applications to the Research Project Grant scheme?

Extensions to the 9-month deadline are not generally permitted. In exceptional circumstances a limited extension may be possible at the discretion of the Director. You are strongly advised to contact the Trust (020 7042 9872 or grants@leverhulme.ac.uk) as soon as possible to discuss the options available to you and this must be before the 9-month deadline expires. After this time your application will automatically be closed. Exceptional circumstances are generally those which are sudden, unforeseen or outside of your control and which prevent you from carrying out your academic duties for the majority of the 9-month period. Examples include illness; maternity, paternity and adoption leave; bereavement of a partner or child. Exceptional circumstances do NOT include issues around workload, fieldwork or teaching duties or other leave such as sabbaticals etc.

Applies to: Research Project Grants

10. Do the Trust provide feedback on applications?

The Trust appreciates the time and effort made by applicants but we are unable to provide feedback on applications for two main reasons. Firstly, our administrative resources are very limited. Our team of 16 staff distribute and manage £100m of awards each year and the trustees feel strongly that the funds available should go to fund research activity rather than administrative costs. Secondly, our schemes are distinct in the funding landscape so referee comments regarding the fit to Trust criteria will not be relevant to applications to other funders.

Applies to: all schemes

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