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 Services Office (RSO) is based in the University Offices, Wellington Square (with a satellite office in the Medical School Offices, Level 3, John Radcliffe Hospital). The RSO 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 RSO 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 RSO, which also deals, inter alia, with various intellectual property matters, including other research-related agreements covering clinical trials and services, services to industry, confidentiality issues, material transfer and consultancy. Contact details for members of the RSO, from whom advice may be sought are as follows:

Ms Catherine Quinn, Director

(telephone: (2)70158, e-mail:;

Mr Pierre-Manuel Espinasse, Research Grants and European Liaison Officer (telephone: (2)70043, e-mail:;

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

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

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

Ms Grace Garland, Administrative Officer (telephone: (2)80666, e-mail:;

Ms Linda Jones, Administrative Officer (telephone: 553 22131, e-mail: Enquiries relating to day-to-day processing of research grant applications should be addressed to the RSO's Research Grants Office, Room 330, the University Offices (telephone: (2)70146), or, in the case of certain clinical departments, to the RSO 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 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 Services Office before they are despatched 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, to Room 330, Research 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. 3, 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 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 Services Office, whose staff would be pleased to help.

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Research Professorships 1999–2000

The British Academy has announced details of the first competition for a new series of Research Professorships in the Humanities and Social Sciences. Awards are for three years, starting between 1 October 1999 and 1 October 2000.

Applications should be submitted through the college (for CUF and special non-CUF lecturers); or through the University (for other university academic staff). However, approval for all applications from academic staff holding joint appointments must be obtained from the faculty board in question, the General Board, and the college before they are forwarded to the British Academy.

Further details about the scheme may be found in the Research Services Offices electronic bulletin ( and are also available, together with application forms, from the appropriate faculty board secretaries. The academy's closing date for receipt of applications is 21 May.

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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 the academic staff, and may relate 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 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 the Secretary of the Committee for the Sir John Hicks Fund, University Offices, Wellington Square, Oxford.

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The Oppenheimer Fund provides grants to assist the academic exchange of senior members between the University of Oxford and universities and similar institutions of higher education in the Republic of South Africa. Applications are invited from senior members of the University who wish either to visit one or more universities in South Africa or to invite a staff member from a South African university to Oxford. Grants may be awarded to assist with living expenses for a maximum of six months, and travel costs. Visits for the sole purpose of attending a conference will not normally be eligible for support from the fund.

The maximum level of grants is likely to be up to £1,000 per month for subsistence and up to £700 for the cost of travel between Oxford and South Africa. Applications for grants from the fund should include a statement of the purpose of the proposed visits (including an outline of any research to be carried out during the visit), duration, and estimated costs, details of any other available sources of funding, and, in the cast of visits to Oxford, a curriculum vitae of the staff member it is proposed to invite and a letter of support from a senior member at Oxford. Applications should be sent to the International Office, University Offices, Wellington Square, by 1 June.

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