A quick guide to funding to support collaboration, impact and knowledge exchange.

Supporting your collaboration

We are here to provide support and guidance for researchers and external partners who want funding to foster collaboration, impact and knowledge exchange.

Contact us if you are interested in applying for any of the following opportunities.

Send your enquiry to ress@sheffield.ac.uk

  1. Innovation, Impact and Knowledge Exchange (IIKE) fund

    The University’s Innovation, Impact and Knowledge Exchange (IIKE) strategy sets out how academics are encouraged and supported in developing relationships with external partners and creating impact.
    The objectives of the strategy are:
    • To create and maintain deeper partnerships with external organisations;
    • To make the most of our intellectual property;
    • To engage with our City Region; and
    • To embed Impact, Innovation and KE within our organization.
    Research and Innovation Services manages a programme of funding to support these objectives, which includes:
    • Funding for Industrial Research Sabbaticals (up to three months full time buy-out);
    • Collaborative Research and Development funding of up to £25k to stimulate research relationships;
    • Proof of Concept funding (subjects to a commercial assessment).

  2. ESRC Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) fund

    Sheffield is one of 26 institutions to benefit from the roll-out of the ESRC’s Impact Acceleration Accounts, a devolved block grant designed to improve the speed and flexibility of funding to support knowledge exchange, which replaces the KE Opportunities Fund (earlier known as Follow-on funding).
    The programme is for activity related to high quality social science research, and includes three responsive mode schemes, which will be advertised and managed alongside existing IIKE funding schemes (see call deadlines above).
    • additional support for early career researchers engage with external partners (to be used initially to enhance RIS's existing development programme);
    • KE Opportunities. Awards of up to £15k for applied collaborative research or KE or impact activity linked to high quality social science research;
    • Secondments. Awards of up to £5k for short-term outward secondments, to support for example the development of co-produced research proposals.
    RIS’s Research Partnerships and Engagement Team will manage these responsive mode schemes, working closely with RESS, with decisions being made by a cross-Faculty panel, which includes RESS Director Prof Gordon Dabinett.
    The IAA also includes resources to support the Faculty's strategic objectives through network-building grants, the development of strategic partnerships, training provision, and case studies and films. Decisions on these strategic elements of the programme will be made by the Faculty Research Hub (Faculty Director of Research and Innovation, Directors of Doctoral Programmes, European Funding, RESS and WRDTC, and lead DM for Research) with the budgets being held in RESS.

  3. RESS Co-production fund

    RESS will also be launching its Co-production fund later this semester with a call workshop. It is anticipated that around £10k will be made available in total. The focus of the fund is not to stimulate co-produced collaborative research as such, for which other funds are available, but to help cement Sheffield’s reputation as a national centre of excellence in this area of research, by encouraging academics to develop learning and publish papers on methodological issues

  4. Commissioned research

    Engaging in contract research alongside more traditional academic research can bring many benefits, including opportunities to learn from practitioners and policy-makers, access to data and resources for significant research. Securing contract research will continue to be an important area of activity for the Faculty, as traditional sources of research income remain constrained.

    For more information about commissioned research please contact your departmental research support staff in the first instance.

  5. Knowledge Transfer Partnerships

    KTPs provide another good funding mechanism for engaged research. They enable a project of around two years at no cost to the University (a 30% or 50% contribution from an external partner is required). They often enable access to valuable data from external partners and help to develop new researchers. Projects do not need a technology element, but do need a focus on improving partners’ business outcomes.
    The Region’s budget for KTPs is currently underspent, and so further ideas for projects are strongly encouraged. RESS can provide significant advice and support in preparing proposals, and will be running further information events over the year.

  6. RESS Knowledge Exchange Funding

    RESS has a limited operational budget to support KE activity across the Faculty. This is generally for events and network building, always involving external partners and generally several departments. Projects funded over the last year have included a series of Police canteen events with the Centre for Criminological Research, the interdisciplinary SHOPPS event on urban centre management, workshops with the Environment Agency, and KE to support the development of the City’s Local Plan.

  7. University of Sheffield PhD internships

    Could your organisation benefit from the brightest and the best?

    The University of Sheffield are providing support for Social Science PhD students to undertake short internships with external organisations. The internships will be typically for three months, but the scheme is flexible, so shorter or longer periods are acceptable depending on the nature of the project.