Grants and Research Funding

Contents of this section:

[Note. An asterisk denotes a reference to a previously published or recurrent entry.]

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The Oxford University Research and Commercial Services Office (RCSO) is based in the University Offices, Wellington Square, (with a satellite office in the Medical School Offices, Level 3, John Radcliffe Hospital). The RCSO is part of the finance division of the University's central administration.

The office processes and approves all applications to outside bodies for research grants and approves research related agreements on behalf of the University. It also acts in an advisory capacity for those seeking outside funding or requiring information about specific initiatives (e.g. LINK, ROPA, Teaching Company Schemes, EU research programmes etc.).

The RCSO produces a weekly bulletin on funding opportunities, electronic Research and Industry News (eRIN), which is available to members of the University via the World Wide Web at:

Research contracts with industry are negotiated through the RCSO, which also deals, inter alia, with various intellectual property matters, research- related work covered by purchase orders, consultancy agreements, agreements covering clinical trials and services, and services to industry.

The Manager of the RCSO is Dr Roger Pritchett (telephone: 2(80499), e-mail:

Other members of the RCSO from whom advice may be sought are as follows:

Dr Michael Halsey, Assistant Registrar (telephone: (2)70011, e-mail:;

Dr Richard Liwicki, Assistant Registrar, John Radcliffe Hospital satellite office (telephone: 553 22604, e-mail:;

Mr Pierre-Manuel Espinasse, Research Grants and European Liaison Officer

(telephone: (2)70043, e-mail:;

Ms Fiona Anderson, Contracts Officer (telephone: (2)70142, e-mail:;

Ms Kathryn Dally, Administrative Officer (telephone: 2)80319, e-mail:;

Mrs Margaret Taylor, Administrative Officer (telephone: (2)80666, e-mail:

Enquiries relating to day-to-day processing of research grant applications should be addressed to the RCSO's Research Grants Office, Room 330, the University Offices (telephone: (2)70146), or, in the case of certain clinical departments, to the RCSO satellite office, The Medical School Offices, Level 3, John Radcliffe Hospital, Headington (telephone: 553 22544).

General enquiries may be addressed, in the first instance, to the Manager's Personal Assistant, Mrs Jane Taylor (telephone: (2)70143), who will be pleased to direct calls to the appropriate member of staff.

Administrative procedures in respect of externally sponsored research

Members of the University are reminded that it is a requirement of the General Board that all applications for externally funded support must be endorsed on behalf of the University through the Research and Commercial Services Office before they are dispatched to the sponsor, whether or not this is required by the funding body. (This includes, for example, bodies such as the Leverhulme Trust, and other charities and EU programmes which do not specifically ask for administrative authorisation.)

The reason for the requirement is twofold: namely (i) to ensure that the funds being requested are adequate for the purpose and the costing rules of the funding body have been applied correctly, and (ii) to ensure that the University would be in a position to undertake the obligations arising from an award and that these do not contravene University policy.

The detailed arrangements are as follows: applicants for research grants should submit their applications, together with a completed copy of the University's outside grant form (OG12), to Room 330, Research and Commercial Services Office, University Offices, Wellington Square, telephone (2)70146—leaving three clear working days for them to be processed.

In connection with the acceptance of awards and signature of contracts it should be noted that Statutes, Tit. X, cl. 2, provides that `no official of the University or any other person employed by the University or working in or in connection with any department of or under the control of the University shall in connection with any invention, discovery, or patent, or ... process, or manufacture have authority to make any representations on behalf of the University or to enter into any contract on behalf of the University or to be concerned in any transaction whatsoever in connection therewith on behalf of the University except with the express consent of Council'.

The relevant officials in the Research and Commercial Services Office have been given authority to approve applications for external funds in support of research and the terms of contracts in straightforward cases under this provision: in more complicated cases, specific authority is necessary.

Enquiries related to any aspect of externally sponsored research should be directed to the Research and Commercial Services Office, whose staff would be pleased to help.

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The Committee for the Sir John Hicks Fund invites applications from members of the University for grants towards the costs of research in economic history. Applications will be considered from undergraduates, graduate students, and members of academic staff, and may related to research into the economic history of any period or country.

Applicants should (a) provide sufficient information about the general nature of their research to establish that it falls within the field of economic history; and (b) specify the precise nature and cost of the expenditure for which a grant is requested. They should also give the name of one referee who might be consulted by the committee.

It is intended by the committee that grants should normally be made for sums of up to £250, though this may on occasion be exceeded. Retrospective grants will be made only in exceptional circumstances.

The committee will consider applications twice in each year. The closing date for the first round is Monday of the third week of Hilary Term, and for the second round Monday of the third week of Trinity Term. Applications should be sent to Mrs E.A. Macallister, Secretary of the Committee for the Sir John Hicks Fund, University Offices, Wellington Square, Oxford OX1 2JD.

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A small number of places will be available in 1998–9 for current undergraduate or graduate students of the University who wish to undertake a period of study at the ANU. Australian nationals will not normally be eligible to apply. It is expected that exchanges for graduates will begin in either October 1998 or February 1999 and undergraduate exchanges will begin at the end of February 1999. Students would normally spend one semester/two terms at the ANU. A British Airways Travel Bursary will be available to provide return travel to Australia and a small bursary may also be available towards other expenses. Further information and an application form may be obtained from the International Office, University Offices, Wellington Square (telephone: (2)70241). The closing date is 22 May.

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