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2010 Call for Proposals for EPSRC Centres in Innovative Manufacturing

By Shirley Ray,2014-01-09 11:55
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2010 Call for Proposals for EPSRC Centres in Innovative Manufacturing

    2010 Call for Proposals for EPSRC Centres in

    Innovative Manufacturing

    Closing date for registering intent to submit an outline: 12:00 02 June 2010 Closing Date for outlines: 16:00 24 June 2010

    Closing Date for full proposals (invited applicants only): 16:00 14 October 2010

    Call Summary

    EPSRC aims for the Centres are:

    ; To create, deliver and disseminate a coherent programme of

    innovative manufacturing research.

    ; To address major long-term manufacturing challenges / and or

    emergent market opportunities.

    ; To provide strong support for UK manufacturing industries. ; To enhance the global profile and significance of UK manufacturing

    research.

    ; To create a national network of expertise in manufacturing knowledge

    with outreach to other centres and relevant research groups. It is expected that the Centres will:

    1. Act as leaders in their areas: be high profile, lead on workshops, open

    days and networks and drive forward the innovative manufacturing

    research agenda, influencing policy and contributing to national

    debate in manufacturing.

    2. Evolve by taking a strategic approach to move in new directions and

    new areas and depart from traditional thinking.

    3. Work with EPSRC to further manufacturing research.

    EPSRC is inviting applications for a number of new EPSRC Centres in Innovative Manufacturing. The funding will be a single award of up to five years in duration consisting of two types of support:

    1. Funding to retain key staff, nurture collaborations, market the centre,

    undertake feasibility studies, ensuring the research knowledge is

    appropriately disseminated and for networking with other Centres in

    the UK and overseas (akin to platform grant funding).

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    2. Funding to support up to two research projects/themes the focus of

    which are driven by the long-term manufacturing research challenges

    of users.

    Applicants will need to demonstrate:

    ; The innovative nature of the approach proposed to tackle the

    manufacturing research challenges.

    ; The leadership and vision for the Centre.

    ; The UK need for this Centre and that the research challenges are not

    already being addressed by other parts of the UK academic community. ; A business need through significant direction and support from

    collaborators. There is an expectation that the extent of this user

    support and engagement will increase over the lifetime of the grant. It is expected that key users will work with the academic team in preparing the bid (in effect be co-creators of the centre) and this should be apparent in the authorship of the case.

    The EPSRC would particularly welcome proposals in emergent and convergent technologies and processes which require a multidisciplinary approach. The recent International Theme Day in Manufacturing highlighted the importance of the following areas: a whole systems approach; process modelling and the use of ICT tools in manufacturing (e.g. virtual manufacturing); sustainability and the green revolution (e.g. sustainable product development); and the integration of design and manufacturing. EPSRC will not fund centres in the specific areas already covered by the three new EPSRC Centres for Innovative Manufacturing or the six existing IMRCs whose funding continues after January 2012. These are shown below. EPSRC plans to commit ?50 million during 2010/11 and would like fund up to ten Centres, dependent on the quality of the proposals received and their fit to the criteria. It is expected that bids for the new Centres will range between ?3 million and ?6 million (calculated at 100% full economic costs - with EPSRC contributing at 80% fEC).

    Applicants will need to discuss any application with EPSRC first and will need to register intention to submit before the formal assessment process which will be a competitive two-stage process:

    ; Outline stage to assess the applicant has sufficiently addressed the:

    o Centre vision and leadership qualities of the Director.

    o Innovative nature of the manufacturing research challenges.

    o UK need for the Centre.

    o Capability of the research group to engage with users.

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    o Academic capability of the research group and alignment to the

    university(ies) strategy(ies).

    o Appropriateness of EPSRC as the funding agency and of this

    funding mechanism.

    ; Full stage where the proposals will be competitively rank ordered via both postal peer review and interview stages. The criteria, (which are not in any order of priority) will be:

    o Quality of the innovative manufacturing research programme.

    o Overall strategy for the Centre including vision, management and

    plans for longer term sustainability.

    o Leadership qualities of the director.

    o Level of business/user direction and support.

    o Exploitation strategy and potential impact, including networking

    and outreach to other research and user groups.

    o Capabilities of the research group to deliver the aims and

    objectives of an EPSRC Centre in Innovative Manufacturing.

    o Level of commitment from the university(ies).

    There will be a briefing session for those groups invited to submit a full bid at the EPSRC Offices in Swindon on 11 August 2010.

    Specifics of this call

    The scientific remit of this call is innovative manufacturing research in

    engineering and physical sciences; where aspects of a proposal overlap with the remits of other research councils, we will consult with those councils regarding their potential interest in becoming involved. All proposals must lie predominantly within EPSRC’s remit.

    The definition of manufacturing research is:

    The design and development of new and existing manufacturing

    processes, systems and networks, wherein manufacturing is a means

    of creating value from things that are made, and recovering maximum

    value from the product or product idea, including delivering a service

    through life.

    The EPSRC would particularly welcome proposals in emergent and convergent technologies and processes which require a multidisciplinary approach. The recent International Theme Day in Manufacturing highlighted the importance of the following areas: a whole systems approach; process modelling and the use of ICT tools in manufacturing (e.g. virtual manufacturing); sustainability and the green revolution (e.g. sustainable product development); and the integration of design and manufacturing.

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    EPSRC will only fund one Centre within an area and therefore will not fund Centres in areas already covered by:

    ; the three new EPSRC Centres for Innovative Manufacturing http://www.epsrc.ac.uk/research/centres/innovativemanufacturing/Pages/default.aspx in:

    1. Liquid metal engineering

    2. Photonics

    3. Regenerative medicine

    1. or the six existing IMRCs whose funding continues after January 2012:

    o Multidisciplinary Assessment of Technology Centre for Healthcare

    (MATCH)

    http://www.match.ac.uk/

    o UCL Centre in Bioprocessing

    http://www.ucl.ac.uk/biochemeng/industry/imrc

    o Scottish Manufacturing Institute at Heriot-Watt

    http://www.smi.hw.ac.uk/

    o Electronics IMRC

    http://www.lboro.ac.uk/research/iemrc/index.html

    o Health and Care Infrastructure Research and Innovation Centre

    (HaCIRIC)

    http://www.haciric.org/

    o Imperial Innovation Studies Centre

    http://www3.imperial.ac.uk/innovationstudies

    User collaboration is an essential aspect for these Centres. The case for support will need to provide evidence that partners have been engaged in generating the proposal from the outset. The EPSRC funding is to support a platform for basic research through to proof of feasibility within a laboratory environment. A key characteristic of the Centre is that the research is driven by the long-term research challenges of users. Financial sustainability is likely to depend upon successful funding from users, the Technology Strategy Board and other agencies with a direct interest in commercialising the research. It is also important that the knowledge within the Centre is refreshed from results arising from more fundamental research projects.

    Applicants will therefore need a business plan which articulates the Centre‟s strategy at each stage of the value chain (discovery, understand, integrate/adapt, demonstration and deploy).

    Timetable

    Deadline for registering intent to submit an outline application 02 June

    2010

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Deadline for outline proposals 24 June 2010

    Outline Panel July 2010

    Decision of the outline Panel mid August 2010

    Meeting with the successful outline applicants 11 August 2010 Deadline for full proposals 14 October 2010

    Prioritisation interview panel February 2011

    Decisions of which proposals will be funded March 2011

    REGISTER INTENT TO SUBMIT OUTLINE PROPOSAL

    STAGE

    Anyone wishing to apply for one of these new Centres must register with EPSRC first by completing the Intent to Submit form which can be downloaded from the EPSRC website from the same page as this call document

    http://www.epsrc.ac.uk/funding/calls/open/Pages/innovativemanufacturingcentres.aspx. This must be sent electronically to manufacturing@epsrc.ac.uk

    by 12:00 on 02 June 2010.

    OUTLINE STAGE

    Outline proposals will not be accepted from any applicant who has failed to register intent.

    A. How to Apply

    You should submit your proposal using the Research Councils‟ Joint electronic Submission (Je-S) System (https://je-s.rcuk.ac.uk/). When

    adding a new proposal you should select Council „EPSRC‟, document type „Outline Proposal‟ and the „EPSRC Outline‟ Scheme. On the Project Details page you should select the „EPSRC Centres for Innovative Manufacturing 2010 Outline call.

    Both single and multi-institutional bids are invited; however, proposals must be submitted on one common Je-S proposal form even if they are multi-institutional bids.

    Details of which Research Organisations are eligible to apply are available at http://www.rcuk.ac.uk/research/eligibility.htm. However, for this call, we

    will only accept applications from UK Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). Note that clicking „submit document‟ in Je-S submits the proposal to your

    host organisation‟s administration, not to EPSRC. Please ensure you allow sufficient time for your organisation‟s submission process between submitting your proposal to them and the Call closing date. EPSRC must receive your application by 16:00 on 24June 2010.

    Please also note that it is the responsibility of the lead organisation to ensure all the documentation required is submitted with the

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    proposal form. There will be no opportunity for the proposals to be sent back to the organisation following the submission.

    Guidance on the types of support that may be sought and advice on the completion of the research proposal forms are given on the EPSRC website http://www.epsrc.ac.uk/funding/apprev/preparing/Pages/default.aspx) (

    which should be consulted when preparing all proposals.

    You should consult your Research Administration at the earliest opportunity when preparing your outline proposal, specifically with regard to costing your outline proposal and any internal procedures you need to follow. In addition to the proposal details that you need to complete in Je-S (including outline costs and a non-technical summary of the proposal) you will also need to prepare the following attachments:

    1. Outline Case for Support

    The case for support should be a maximum of four sides of A4 and should use the following headings:

    ; Overall Vision for the Centre and how it meets the aims and

    expectations of the EPSRC Centres for Innovative Manufacturing model

    (as articulated on page 1 of this call document). This should include an

    overview of the manufacturing research challenges and the approach

    to addressing them.

    ; Leadership qualities of the director. In addition to the information

    provided in the CV, please provide evidence that the director has the

    necessary skills and competencies to drive the vision.

    ; UK need for an EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in

    this area. This should be set in an international context with reference

    to relevant academic research and the business requirements. ; Capability of the research group. This should include evidence:

    o That you have the necessary skills within the team to address the

    proposed research challenges or a route to access those skills.

    o Of user direction and collaboration and the ability to be able to

    leverage cash and in-kind support from these users.

    o That users have been involved in the preparation of this proposal

    from the outset.

    ; Appropriateness of this funding mechanism to address the

    identified business need challenges. It will be important to

    articulate not only that the overall research challenges are best

    addressed through this type of funding but also that it is appropriate

    for the EPSRC to provide the funds.

    ; Resources requested including the percentage of time the principal

    and co-investigators will be spending on the project. Explain the ratio

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    of funding requested for the directly incurred costs of the two parts of

    the proposal (platform-type funding and research).

    2. CV

    Please attach as a two-page CV for the director of the centre under the CV attachment type which demonstrates a track record in managing large complex research grants and of collaborating with users.

    3. Letter from the university(ies)

    Letters from all universities involved should articulate how this new centre aligns with the university‟s research strategy. The letter should be signed by

    the Pro-VC for research or equivalent. The letter(s) should be attached as “letter of support”.

    B. Outline Assessment criteria

    It is important that all the assessment criteria are met as peer review assessment will consider all of them equally.

    ; Centre vision and leadership qualities of the Director.

    ; Innovative nature of the manufacturing research challenges.

    ; UK need for the Centre.

    ; Capability of the research group to engage with users.

    ; Academic capability of the research group and alignment to the

    university(ies) strategy(ies).

    ; Appropriateness of EPSRC as the funding agency and of this

    funding mechanism.

    C. Outline Assessment Process

    The outline bids will be considered by a Peer Review Panel based solely on the information provided on the Je-S form, in the case for support and the accompanying attachments. The Peer Review Panel will first categorise the proposals into broad areas and then prioritise proposals within those categories according to the criteria. The Panel will also comment on the relevant merit of the proposals across the categories.

    EPSRC will decide, based on the advice of the Peer Review Panel, which proposals to invite to the full stage.

    After the decisions have been made, the EPSRC will hold a meeting in Swindon to give further briefing for all successful applicants on 11 August 2010.

    FULL PROPOSAL STAGE

    Applicants must have been successful at the outline stage in order to submit an application to the full proposal stage.

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    Closing Date for full proposals for invited applicants only: 16:00 14 October 2010

    Please note that EPSRC reserves the right to reject a full proposal where the resources are substantially different from those indicated in the outline proposal or where there have been other significant changes from the outline proposal.

    EPSRC acknowledges that the timescales are tight but are due to the proposed timescale for the transition of the Council‟s grant processing

    activities to the RCUK Shared Services Centre (details of which were outlined in a letter to Vice Chancellors and Directors of Research from RCUK in January this year). The proposals will needs to go out to postal peer review before the end of October. Therefore, there will be no

    opportunity to amend the proposal after submission (e.g. revising justification of resources or later submitting letters of support). It is the responsibility of the lead organisation to ensure all the documentation required is correctly submitted with the proposal form.

    A. How to prepare a full proposal

    You should submit your proposal using the Research Councils‟ Joint electronic Submission (Je-S) System (https://je-s.rcuk.ac.uk/). When

    adding a new proposal you should select Council „EPSRC‟, document type „Standard Proposal‟ and the „Standard‟ Scheme. On the Project Details page you should select the „EPSRC Centres for Innovative Manufacturing 2010

    call.

    Proposals must be submitted on one common Je-S proposal form even if they are multi-institutional bids.

    Note that clicking „submit document‟ on your proposal form in Je-S initially

    submits the proposal to your host organisation‟s administration, not to

    EPSRC. Please ensure you allow sufficient time for your organisation‟s

    submission process between submitting your proposal to them and the Call closing date. EPSRC must receive your application by 16:00 on 14

    October 2010.

    Guidance on the types of support that may be sought and advice on the completion of the research proposal forms are given on the EPSRC website (http://www.epsrc.ac.uk/funding/apprev/preparing/Pages/default.aspx)

    which should be consulted when preparing all proposals.

    Note it will be mandatory to have at least one user-collaborator named as project partner in Je-S; your proposal will not validate without one. It is also mandatory that some of the collaboration will involve a direct cash contribution. It is not acceptable for the only project partner making a cash contribution to be closely linked to the Institutions involved in the bid (e.g. university spinouts).

    In addition to the proposal details that you need to complete in Je-S, you will also need to prepare the following attachments:

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    1. Full Case for Support

    The case for support should be a maximum of 12 sides of A4 under the

    following headings:

    ; Track record. The applicant should include evidence of the director‟s leadership qualities and that the team has the capability

    and capacity to address the identified research needs.

    ; Vision and rationale for the Centre. Include how this

    complements not only other activities within the university(ies) but also those within the UK and international scene. The rationale should articulate why funding in this area is timely and relevant and will address users‟ key manufacturing and business research

    needs to enable them to be innovative in a ten-year timescale. It should also address how this will achieve the aims and objectives of the scheme (as detailed on page 1 of this call). It should be set in an international context with reference to relevant academic research and the business requirements.

    ; Platform-type funding please articulate the activities this part of the funding will enable in underpinning the activities of the Centre to achieve the aims and expectations of an EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing.

    ; Flagship research projects/themes. Please include:

    o A broad overview of the research theme(s).

    o The underlying key research challenges and the broad

    approach to address them.

    o The scientific details and the methodology for the initial

    projects; ensure there is sufficient detail to allow peer review

    to assess the quality and ambitious nature of the research).

    o User engagement in the flagship themes and how it will impact

    on their business.

    o Details of how it is envisaged the programme of research will

    progress.

    ; Management - this should give details of:

    o How the Centre will be run.

    o The strategy to maintain and control the balance between the

    needs of the users and the requirement to carry out ambitious

    research.

    o The strategy as to how the flexibility of resources will be used

    for both the platform type funding and the user-led research

    funding, including a risk management strategy.

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    o How the Centre will further enhance its research portfolio to

    increase its impact on its user community.

    o The strategy to increase user engagement during the lifetime

    of the grant, including attracting new user collaborators. 2. CV

    Please attach as a two-page CV for the Director under the CV attachment type which demonstrates a track record in managing large complex research grants and of collaborating with users.

    3. Business Plan

    This should be a maximum of two-pages of A4. This plan should articulate

    the plans for the Centre‟s sustainability. It should:

    ; Explain the Centre‟s strategy for engagement with the entire value

    chain (from discovery, to understanding through to

    integration/adaptation, demonstration and deployment) i.e. the

    exploitation plan and potential pathways to impact.

    ; Articulate the funding agencies that would be appropriate to

    support this strategy, and

    ; Identify how you would measure both quantitatively and

    qualitatively the impact and success of the grant funding in terms

    of research, people and policy.

    The plan should be attached as “Other attachment” in Je-S.

    4. Justification of resources

    This should be a maximum of two pages of A4. This should be in two parts:

    ; Justification of resources for the platform-type grant support.

    ; Justification of the resources for the research programme.

    ; Resources cannot be requested for travel and subsistence for any of

    the collaborators identified in the bid.

    5. Two-page Workplan

    6. Project Partner Letters of Support

    The letters of support from project partners should:

    ; Confirm their rationale for support for the centre from their business

    needs and drivers, and detail how they have been involved in the

    preparation of the proposal.

    ; An outline of their involvement during the five years.

    ; Confirm the contribution of cash and in-kind support.

    ; Indicate whether there may be a willingness to increase this amount

    during the lifetime of the grant.

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