Sunday, June 06, 2021

Some current reading

I mentioned on twitter that it would be good to speak to people about some particularly interesting papers and books. Below a sample of things I am reading at the moment. I am reading a lot and attempting to write on behavioural public policy, ethics, and mental health. I might do another post on potential beach reading but below some potential pieces for a journal club session over zoom coffee. 

Kahneman, Sibony, and Sunstein's "Noise" is becoming a major bestseller. I have used a number of the background papers in teaching for the last few years and am not surprised it is generating such an impact. 

Knapp and Wong's recent review of the current state of economics and mental health research is a strong background doc for a discussion of a rapidly evolving and important area of research. 

Lucas et al's recent paper "A Direct Comparison of the Day Reconstruction Method and the Experience Sampling Method" (now out in JPSP) is the most developed work to date on the comparison between those methods and potentially important for a wide range of work. 

Hattke, et al's recent Public Administration Review paper on "Emotional responses to bureaucratic red tape" is fascinating approach to understanding a key human element of public policy. 

Enjoying most of the papers in Behavioural Public Policy, a recently developed journal that is doing a very strong job at providing an intellectual base for the development of this literature. Among many papers, one that I enjoyed reading was Vugts et al's detailed review of different concepts of autonomy in ethics of nudging debate.  I am keeping an ongoing reading list on the ethics of nudging literature and the more general ethical debate and am thinking of ways both formally and informally to find ways to discuss and develop this literature. 

Recent AER paper by Dynarski et al "Closing the Gap: The Effect of Reducing Complexity and Uncertainty in College Pricing on the Choices of Low-Income Students" is a really strong example of integration of behavioural work into the evaluation of a major public policy change. 

Nature Human Behavior is another relatively recently launched journal that is producing many really interesting papers. One paper that I would particularly like to discuss is "How behavioural sciences can promote truth, autonomy and democratic discourse online"

Interesting to see a recent review by Fabian and Pykett of the ethics of well-being policy in Perspectives on Psychological Science. 

Friday, April 30, 2021

Upcoming Funding Rounds

*Updated May 2021

*Philip Leverhulme Prizes

Current round closes: 17th May 2021, 4 pm

For researchers at an early stage of their careers whose work has had international impact and whose future research career is exceptionally promising - to use for any research purpose

Philip Leverhulme Prizes have been offered since 2001 in commemoration of the contribution to the work of the Trust made by Philip Leverhulme, the Third Viscount Leverhulme and grandson of William Hesketh Lever, the founder of the Trust.


Each prize is worth £100,000.


The funding is available over 2 to 3 years.

*Major Research Fellowships

Current round closes: 14th May 2021, 4 pm

For well-established, distinguished researchers in the humanities and social sciences to complete a piece of original research

Fellowships are particularly aimed at those who are or have been prevented by routine duties from completing a programme of original research.


Replacement salary costs for the duration of the Fellowship.


The duration of a Fellowship is for two or three years, to start at the beginning of the academic year following receipt of the offer letter.

*Leverhulme Internations Professorships

Current round closes: 28th May 2021, 4 pm  

To help maintain the UK’s international standing as a desirable research destination that is open to talented individuals from all countries

Applications are encouraged from universities seeking to recruit excellent research leaders of any nationality, currently working outside the UK, in order to fill strategically important positions in this country. The Trust has allocated at least £100 million over five years to fund these grants. Grants are for a period of five years. Each UK university is permitted to make only one bid per round. 

It is expected that the university: 

will offer a permanent appointment to the Professorial candidate and, where possible, to staff appointed on the grants and

will offer an ongoing package of support after the end of the grant.


Up to £5 million for staff salaries and associated costs.

This figure should not be considered as a target and bids that do not request the maximum sum available will be considered on an equal footing with those that do.


Professorships will run over a period of 5 years.

*Research Fellowships

Next round opens: September 2021

For experienced researchers in any discipline, to complete a piece of research

Research Fellowships are open to experienced researchers, particularly those who are or have been prevented by routine duties from completing a programme of original research. 

Value: The maximum value of a Fellowship is £60,000. 

Duration: Fellowships are tenable for between 3 and 24 months.

Application details: 

*The BA/Leverhulme Small Research Grants 

Scheme opens date: 7 Apr 2021

Deadline date: 02 Jun 2021 - 17:00 BST

Earliest start date: 1 Sep 2021

Available to support primary research in the humanities and social sciences. These awards, up to £10,000 in value and tenable for up to 24 months, are provided to cover the cost of the expenses arising from a defined research project. 

Duration of award: Up to 24 months

*Recovery, renewal and resilience in a post-pandemic world

Opportunity status: Open

Funders: Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)

Co-funders: 15 other funders from 11 countries across Europe, the Americas and Africa

Funding type: Grant

Total fund: £4,200,000

Maximum award: £310,000

Publication date: 17 March 2021

Opening date: 12 April 2021

Closing date: 12 July 2021 23:59 UK time

Apply for funding to investigate how COVID-19 will affect society in the medium and long term.

Your proposal must address key gaps in our understanding to help:

reduce the pandemic’s effect on society

support recovery and renewal.

You must apply as part of a transnational partnership of at least three members.

ESRC and AHRC are providing this opportunity as part of the Trans-Atlantic Platform (T-AP). Your partners must be from other countries taking part in this funding opportunity.

The UK part of the proposal must be within ESRC’s or AHRC’s remit.

Your project can be between two and three years long. It must start in March 2022.

As a UK partner, the full economic cost of your part of the project can be up to £310,000. We will fund 80% of this.

*ESRC: Working with Luxembourg researchers

Opportunity status: Open

Funders: Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), UK Research and Innovation

Co-funders: Fonds National de la Recherche (FNR)

Funding type: Grant

Award range: £350,000 - £1,000,000

Publication date: 24 October 2020

Opening date: N/A

Closing date: Open - no closing date

You can apply to work with researchers in Luxembourg. Collaborative work is governed by an agreement between UKRI and Fonds National de la Recherche (FNR), Luxembourg.

You can apply for between £350,000 and £1 million full economic cost for the UK part of the project. If your application is successful, ESRC will contribute 80% of your costs and the host institution is expected to support the remaining 20%.

You may submit collaborative research proposals in any area of social sciences within the remit of both the ESRC and FNR. Projects can last up to five years.

*AHRC research networking scheme

Opportunity status: Open

Funders: Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)

Funding type: Grant

Maximum award: £30,000

Publication date: 20 September 2020

Opening date: N/A

Closing date: Open - no closing date

The grant aims to stimulate new debate and exchange of ideas between researchers and stakeholders on a specified thematic area or issue, by covering the costs for workshops, seminars, networking activities or other events.

You can apply for up to £30,000 for a period of up to two years, at full economic cost.

Additional funding up to £15,000 is available to cover costs of any international activities or participants. UK costs must be accounted for within the initial £30,000 funding.

*Daphne Jackson fellowship

Opportunity status: Open

Funders: Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), Medical Research Council (MRC), Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)

Co-funders: The Daphne Jackson Trust

Funding type: Fellowship

Publication date: 20 September 2020

Opening date: N/A

Closing date: Open - no closing date

These fellowships are for those looking to return to a research career after a break of two or more years for family, health or caring reasons. The aim is to give participants the confidence and skills they need to make a successful return to research.

They provide an opportunity to balance a personalised retraining programme with a challenging research project, in a supportive UK university or research establishment.

They are flexible, with at least 100 hours retraining per year, and part-time – usually completed over two years at 0.5 full-time equivalent although some UKRI funders may award longer than this.

*The 2021 Celebrating Impact Prize

Apply online by Monday 10 May 2021 at 16:00 UK Time

The Prize is open to current and previous ESRC-supported researchers, including doctoral students. Previous winners may submit new research impacts. There are five Prize categories:

Outstanding Business and Enterprise Impact

Outstanding Public Policy Impact

Outstanding Societal Impact

Outstanding International Impact

Outstanding Early Career Impact

All finalists have a film professionally made about their work and impact, and winners are awarded £10,000 to spend on further knowledge exchange, public engagement or other impact related activities.

*Wellcome: Research Fellowships in Humanities and Social Science

This scheme supports postdoctoral researchers in health-related humanities and social sciences who do not hold established academic posts.

Scheme at a glance

Career stage: Leading a research programme, Postdoctoral research, Returning to research

Level of funding: Salary and research expenses covered

Duration of funding:

Up to 3 years

June 2021 round

This is the final round.

Preliminary application deadline: 16 June 2021, 17:00 BST

Full application deadline: 24 August 2021, 17:00 BST

Shortlisting: November 2021

Interviews: January 2022

Research Project Grants

Open all year

For researchers based at universities, institutions of higher education or registered charities with university-equivalent research capacity, to undertake an innovative and original research project

Value: The maximum grant value is £500,000. 

Duration: Research Project Grants may be held for up to five years.

ESRC/UKRI: Research Grants (Open Call)


The ESRC Research Grants (open call) invites proposals from eligible individuals and research teams for standard research projects, large-scale surveys and other infrastructure projects and for methodological developments. The call offers researchers considerable flexibility to focus on any subject area or topic providing that it falls within ESRC’s remit. Proposals can draw from the wider sciences, but the social sciences must represent more than 50 per cent of the research focus and effort. We particularly encourage ambitious and novel research proposals addressing new concepts and techniques and those with the potential for significant scientific or societal and economic impact. We are also keen to encourage fresh ideas from new researchers and appropriate proposals are welcomed from those with limited research experience. Our funding decisions are based on a number of criteria including quality, timeliness, potential impact and value for money. The call is for applications ranging from £350,000 to £1 million (100 per cent full economic cost (fEC)) for a period of up to five years. You can submit proposals to the call at any time – there are no fixed closing dates.

ESRC: Secondary Data Analysis Initiative (SDAI) - open call

Fact Sheet

The Secondary Data Analysis Initiative aims to deliver high-quality high-impact research through utilising existing data resources created by the ESRC and other agencies in order to address some of the most pressing challenges facing society. Proposals are welcome at any time. Funding is provided for up to 24 months with an overall limit of £300,000 (100% fEC) per grant.

Call specification -- see page 11 for eligible data sets

ESRC: New investigator Grant 



The call is open to high-quality early career researchers from anywhere in the world who have the support of an eligible UK research organisation. Grants ranging from £100,000 to £300,000 full Economic Cost (fEC) can be awarded.

AHRC: Research, Development and Engagement Fellowship Scheme – Early Career Researchers

Open- No deadline

The early career route of the Research, Development and Engagement Fellowship scheme provides funding for periods of between 6 and 24 months. Proposals with a full economic cost of between £50,000 and £250,000 may be submitted.

AHRC: Research Grants - Early Careers

The early career route provides grants for projects with a full economic cost (fEC) between £50,000 and £250,000 for a varying duration up to a limit of 60 months.

Open - No Deadline

AHRC: Research, Development and Engagement Fellowship Scheme – Early Career Researchers

AHRC’s Research, Development and Engagement Fellowship Scheme is designed to support arts and humanities researchers at all career stages, enabling each Fellow to undertake ambitious, innovative research and to develop as researchers, thus enhancing their careers.

The scheme has two routes:

The early career route of the Research, Development and Engagement Fellowship scheme provides funding for periods of between 6 and 24 months. Proposals with a full economic cost of between £50,000 and £250,000 may be submitted.

Open - No Deadline

AHRC: Standard route of the Research, Development and Engagement Fellowship

The standard route of the Research, Development and Engagement Fellowship scheme provides funding for periods of between 6 and 18 months. Proposals with a full economic cost of between £50,000 and £300,000 may be submitted.

ESRC: UKRI-SBE lead agency opportunity

The Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences Directorate (SBE) of the US National Science Foundation (NSF) and UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) are pleased to announce their continued support of international collaboration under the SBE-UKRI Lead Agency Opportunity. The goal of this activity is to promote transatlantic collaborative research by reducing some of the barriers to conducting international research that researchers may encounter. The SBE-UKRI Lead Agency Opportunity allows US and UK researchers to submit a single collaborative proposal that will undergo a single review process.

UKRI: Future Leaders Fellowships

Future Leaders Fellowships is a £900 million fund that is helping to establish the careers of world-class research and innovation leaders across UK business and academia.

Future Leaders Fellowships support applicants from diverse career paths, including those returning from a career break or following time in other roles. We also encourage applications from those wishing to work part-time. Our assessors will take into account time spent outside an active research or innovation environment, whether through career breaks, flexible working or time spent working in other roles.

The objectives of the Future Leaders Fellowships are:

  • to develop, retain, attract and sustain research and innovation talent in the UK.

  • to foster new research and innovation career paths including those at the academic/business and interdisciplinary boundaries, and facilitate movement of people between sectors.

  • to provide sustained funding and resources for the best early career researchers and innovators.

  • to provide long-term, flexible funding to tackle difficult and novel challenges, and support adventurous, ambitious programmes.

ESRC/UKRI: Research and innovation ideas to address COVID-19

ESRC intends to fund new research projects as part of the UK Research and Innovation response to the current COVID-19 pandemic. Proposals are invited for short to medium-term economic and social research activity aimed at addressing and mitigating the impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak.

The impact of COVID-19 is vast and varied, complex and evolving. From major disruptions to the global economy through to the dislocation of normal personal relationships, no country, business, community, family or individual has escaped its impacts. In addition to the direct health impacts of the virus, the economic, social, demographic, environmental, psychological, behavioural, political and institutional responses to, and consequences of, the pandemic have been, and will continue to be, profound. The social sciences, individually or working with other disciplines, have a key role to play in understanding, addressing and mitigating the unfolding impacts of the pandemic.

Project length: Up to 18 months

Open- no deadline

UKRI/AHRC: Research and innovation ideas to address Covid-19

The AHRC welcomes applications to the UKRI open call for research and innovation ideas to address the COVID-19 pandemic and its impacts. 

Of the priority areas and research questions outlined, the following may be of particular interest: 

Policy and behavioural change:  What behavioural responses are most effective – singly and in combination – at reducing infection? Which behavioural responses are most effective in different risk environments at work, at home, during transport, etc (work in this area should include consideration of the viral load)?

Ethical, Regulatory and Human Rights issues in responses to COVID-19 : Ethics of prioritization of COVID-related healthcare decisions and interventions. Data and AI ethics in relation to COVID-19 public health measures e.g. tracing apps.  Ethical dimensions of (un)equal impacts of COVID-related decision-making. Ethical dimensions of pandemic response and policing activities. Tensions between collective actions/obligations and individual and human rights 

Communication and Public Health during the pandemic: Design and the effective communication of official health guidance. Identifying and creating trusted public health information sources. Communicating a diversity of COVID-19 experiences

Open - No Deadline

AHRC-FAPESP Collaborative Funding Guidelines

The UK Research Councils, in partnership with the São Paulo Research Foundation, invites applications for its collaborative research grants. These enable transnational British and Brazilian teams to apply for funding for collaborative research projects. UK-based researchers must hold a doctoral degree or equivalent, be actively engaged in postdoctoral research and be employed by, or be scheduled to join, the research organisation before submitting the proposal.

Brazil-based researchers must be formally associated with institutions within the São Paulo state. Projects may last for up to 60 months. Standard route grants are worth between £50,000 and £1 million and early-career grants are worth between £50,000 and £250,000 at 80% full economic cost. The São Paulo Research Foundation will provide equivalent to £1m for Brazilian researchers. The overall proposed budget should not exceed £2m..

European Research Council

Starting Grants: For promising early-career researchers with 2 to 7 years experience after PhD. Grants up to 1.5€ million for 5 years

Open: 12-01-2021 Deadline: 09-03-2021

Consolidator Grants: Grants up to 2€ million for 5 years. For excellent researchers with 7 to 12 years experience after PhD

Open: 21-01-2021 Deadline: 20-04-2021

Advanced Grants: Grants up to €2.5 million for 5 years. For established research leaders with a recognised track record of research achievements

Open: 20-05-2021 Deadline: 31-08-2021

Proof of Concept: Lump Sum Grant of €150.000. For existing ERC grant holders to bring their research ideas closer to market

Open: 14-01-2021 Deadlines: 16-03-2021, 17-06-2021, 20-10-2021

*Please note that the dates are subject to the adoption of Horizon Europe and the ERC Work Programme 2021