The Academy has launched a pilot scheme that provides funding to directly remunerate patient and public contributors who help develop grant applications.
Conversations with our public and patient contributor collective have highlighted the importance of pre-award patient and public involvement (PPI) funding, noting that in the past, they had often been asked to contribute to grant applications but were not remunerated for their time.
We hope this pilot scheme will enable a wider diversity of public and patient contributors to take part in the development of grant applications for our Starter Grants for Clinical Lecturers scheme, while providing valuable opportunities to forge new connections and develop new skills.
The funding is available to those eligible and planning to apply for a Starter Grant in Round 31, which opens in January 2024. This very successful scheme has so far funded nearly 700 early-career clinical lecturers across the UK to date.
We are offering up to £500 per PPI contributor (up to a maximum of five contributors) per grant application. This money is to be used for paying patient and public contributors’ time (at a rate of £25.00 per hour – matching current NIHR guidance) and any out-of-pocket expenses they incur, such as travel and subsistence.
How it works
Funding will be awarded on a first come, first served basis once the Academy’s engagement team has approved the application. The criteria for approval will confirm the application proposes to use appropriate PPI methods, and verifies the time they are expected to take, the number of people who will contribute, the strength of the prior relationship with these contributors, and consideration for their accessibility requirements. The application must also meet the Academy’s definition of engagement.
To start the application process, please send an expression of interest to our engagement team, care of Charlie Vickers, who will be able to send an application form and further information.
Importantly, it is up to the grant applicant to decide how to use this money, within the bounds of PPI activities, depending on the needs of their application. PPI activities can take many forms – whether that’s working closely with a single contributor to develop your application, or hosting a focus group or workshop to discuss your plans.
Please note that including PPI is not mandatory for applying to the Starter Grant for Clinical Lecturers round 31, and it will not affect the assessment of your application if you do not work with PPI contributors to develop your grant application.
Our grants team will continue to manage the Starter Grants assessment cycle as in previous rounds, whilst the Engagement team will review only the applications for PPI funding. The two processes will be carried out independently.
Evaluation and learning
As this is a pilot project, for those who do take up the available funding, the Academy’s engagement team will be keeping in contact with them and the PPI contributors they work with, to determine the success of the pilot scheme and whether working with PPI contributors has positively affected their application. This will help us decide whether to continue offering this funding in future rounds, and if so, how we might shape it to better serve our applicants’ needs.
If you have already worked on a grant application with PPI contributors, please get in contact with us as we would like to hear how you found implementing PPI at this stage of the research cycle. Where possible, we’d also like to hold a conversation with the PPI contributors you worked with.