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University of Manchester Research Institute (UMRI) – Pump Priming Programme

The University of Manchester Research Institute (UMRI) has been created to take forward the Manchester Strategic Vision 2020 goal of establishing the University as a major centre for interdisciplinary research. UMRI has two principal aims:

1.    To foster interdisciplinary research by ensuring that the necessary structures, resources (including funding) and incentives are in place; and
2.    To provide a governance framework for research institutes and other interdisciplinary structures in the University to assist in maximising their performance.

Funding available

Funds will be made available for strategic investments to build sustainable interdisciplinary activities. This call is for pump-priming proposals to provide support for activities that lead to an increase in successful interdisciplinary research. Examples of funding modes include:

  • Support for workshops designed to explore opportunities for collaborative working
  • Funding for feasibility projects in new interdisciplinary areas that have the potential to lead to external funding
  • Support for the preparation of key proposals where the work is clearly interdisciplinary (e.g. Horizon 2020, GCRF)
  • Support for potential new Networks

A proportion of the funding under each of the modes may be used to build partnerships with appropriate stakeholders, including overseas research institutions in developing countries.

Applications for equipment and/or self-contained project support will not be funded.

Applications should be between £10,000 - £50,000, applications at or near the maximum amount will only be funded exceptionally.

Proposals should be up to six months in duration and funds should be expended by 31 July 2018. An end of grant report will be requested following completion of the project. 


This call is open to researchers in all disciplines who are eligible to apply for external research grants.

Submitting an application

Applicants are invited to submit a proposal of no more than three pages, to include:

  • The title of the proposed project
  • A short description of the proposed project
  • Details of the interdisciplinary basis of the proposal, to include details of project partners
  • Why UMRI funding is needed, to include an explanation of why other faculty/school or external grant funding is not more suitable
  • Deliverables. For projects aiming to secure external grant funding, this should include the name of funder and anticipated submission date
  • Planned follow-on activities and how the success of the project will be measured within 12 months and 24 months
  • A breakdown and justification of the costs of the project*

* All proposals must be costed by the relevant RSS hub and must comply with all the usual approval processes.

Only direct costs are eligible under this grant.  Directly allocated staff time and overheads are not recoverable. Direct costs are recoverable at 100% FEC.

Assessment process

Applications should be submitted by email to The closing date for applications is 29 September 2017.

Applications will be assessed under the auspices of the Research Strategy Group, chaired by the Vice-President for Research and Innovation.