Environmental Biotechnology Network

Proof of Concept (PoC) Awards

3rd PoC Call 2022 – Open call

The Environmental Biotechnology Network (EBNet) – a BBSRC/EPSRC NIBB – is pleased to announce its latest PoC Call for 2022. All details, including any updates, will be posted here.

Clarifications to the Guidance – 3rd Call

Part A: Contact Details – Lead Academic (PI).

You may also add the details of any Co-I’s underneath those of the PI. Please just make clear the identity of the lead PI (e.g. Dr X Y (PI); Dr A B (Co-I)). If successful, the application forms part of the contract – hence the need for clarity.

Part B: Aims, methodology and outcomes (max 2 pages)

Regarding the 3 pictures or diagrams max – these are in addition to the 2 pages of text and not counted in the word limit.

Part B: Financial Breakdown/Finance/Research Office contact.

Please leave this line blank to avoid issues with “blinding”. If successful, we will ask for this detail at notification.

Part B: Reference list

If refering to your own prior work try not to link directly to your reference (e.g. …based on my/our work x, see: “X in action” by Dr A B). But there is nothing to stop you using references indirectly (this work has been verified, see: X in action by Dr A B et al.) – particularly if failing to do so might otherwise imply an unrealistic level of work within the bid.

Essential Call documents

Application Form(s) Part (A) and Part (B), and PoC Guidance for Applicants.

Call opens: Tuesday, 1 March 2022

Call closes: Monday, 16 May 2022 (midnight)

PoC funding is designed to encourage and support cross- and multi-disciplinary projects at technology readiness levels 1 to 4. Individual projects should last no longer than 12 months and act as a springboard for future further research. Industry partners are not required, but industry support is welcome, where it adds value to the project.

The total funding available (over 5 year duration of the Network to 2024) is £750K. Three funding strands are available: Desk-based study (max. £25K*); Single discipline (max. £50K*); Cross-disciplinary (max. £100K*). If you would like to know whether your proposed bid or activity falls within EBNet’s remit, further details on our themes can be found here.

*Note that the funding provided by EBNet will be £20K, £40K and £80K respectively, as these awards are at 80% FEC.

Important Supplementary Information for the 3rd Call

The EBNet 3rd PoC Call aims to support a diverse range of EB research projects. This open call continues to offer 3 strands of available funding – up to £25K for desk-based study, up to £50K for single-discipline and up to £100K for cross-disciplinary research.

Important changes have been made to the PoC Guidance and Application – we have moved to a “double-blind” process. Please familiarise yourself with the changes which are intended to focus attention on the project merits and remove any potential sources of bias. In practice for applicants, this means taking care to separate all “identifiers” into section A of the application whilst omitting them from section B. We appreciate your assistance in this and welcome informal queries in advance of the deadline.

We recommend applicants familiarise themselves with the list of projects which have already received support here, as topics which have already attracted substantial funding are likely to be regarded by the Assessment Panel as already adequately represented. To be clear, all projects within the broader EBNet remit will be considered in this open call. Where aspects of your project might reasonably be considered to fall under the remit of a sister-NIBB, the core alignment to EBNet should be made apparent to reviewers. For help and advice on any questions of process or remit, do contact the Network Managers to discuss your project well in advance of application.

Multiple Applications.

Applicants are welcome to be a named PI (once) and Co-I (once) in up to 2 (max.) applications in the 3rd Call. Whilst we appreciate that active research groups may have interests in multiple topic areas, and might collaborate or advise in some capacity in several bids, we request that specific named researchers restrict themselves to being a named PI/Co-I in a maximum of 2 bids per call. Contact the Network Managers in advance with queries.

Previous Calls

Our first PoC call opened on 2 March 2020, with a closing date of 24 April 2020, which was extended to 15 May 2020 due to Covid-related delays. Thirty-three bids were submitted. Five projects were awarded in August 2020.

Our second POC call opened on 1 March 2021 and closed on 29 April 2021. Twenty five bids were submitted. Four projects were awarded in August 2021.

Further details on previously awarded PoC and BIV projects can be found in the Outcomes section of this website.