Projects – Detailed guide.

The core of the network’s operation is the projects that we fund, grouped within each network theme. There are generally three categories of project to apply for – £50K projects, £10K and £2.5K projects. These will be funded at 80% Full Economic Cost basis—see the Financial Considerations section below for more details on this.

Depending on the quality of submission, there will generally be one £50K project, one to three £10K projects, and up to five £2.5K projects funded in each theme.

Project length and end date

Project length is flexible, but we ask that all Theory projects are finished by the end of 2021. The previous themes are expected to have their projects finish by the end of September 2021

How to apply

Applying groups will be required to fill out our 3 page application form which will ask

  • the project aims and rationale
  • target group, method
  • proposed activities, impact, timeline.

There is no limit to the number of proposals any institution/person can submit. All proposals will reviewed on a case-by-case basis. However, please note that a high number of submissions does not guarantee funding!

Application Form

Click below to download the application form:

This is a generic application form you can use for any theme. Please note the theme in question, in the title space provided.

Note – Guidance to Sections on Administrative Support and Project Sustainability

Administrative Support:

This section is really there as a reminder of your institutional needs. Some academic institutions require, in any grant proposal, explicit mention of admin support and what funds are allocated to them, and require any proposer to cost this in. 

Project Sustainability:

This is about how your proposed project feeds into the ‘ecology’ of your research beyond its initial life/the funding period. This is especially important when working with external people or third sector organisations, that there is some meaningful relationship with them which benefits *them* as well as the academic partner. Bluntly, it is important especially that the third sector partner is not used simply as a device to get funding. 

Further, it is about what derives meaningfully from your project in terms of its impact in the wider world, through academic publications, and other streams of interaction. 

Financial Considerations

We are funded by the EPSRC, and so inherit their rules as to what can be funded. Their funding guide has more details.

Perhaps the most significant constraint is that these projects are funded on a FEC (Full Economic Cost) basis, and are funded at 80% of Full Economic Cost.  To put this simply, if you were to apply for £100, you would be funded £80 of that and would be expected to contribute £20 from your organisation and so on. Please bear this in mind when you are costing your project.

Applying this to the grant categories, the maximum Small Project funding of £2,500 will allow stated project costs of £3125 (with the HDI Network funding the £2,500). To get the maximum £10,000 in the Medium Projects at 80% funding your permitted project costs would be around £12,500. A ceiling of project costings of £62,500 would be allowed for the highest funded Large 50K projects.

Please note, according to EPSRC funding rules, only Academic or NHS or some other categories (such as GPs) are eligible to be main funding partners.

If you are an Academic partner lead, please discuss the costing with your finance people with regard to costing both indirect and direct costs.

If you are an Academic partner, please discuss with the host’s finance people what best works for you.

If you are a 3rd sector partner, please discuss with your academic/ NHS /Other permitted partner’s financial people to determine the best distribution of funding to suit your project.

We are keen to support projects that include at least one external community, educational or third sector partner, but that inclusion is not a requirement.


We aim to give approval in around 1 month, hopefully less.

Start date

We will aim for the start date for these funded projects to be as prompt after approval as can be managed.


All Projects will have occasional informal review through the life of their project but the main review will be one month before the end of their project life. Theme leaders may also visit or call to discuss progress.

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