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I am applying for a small research grant.

However, I would not need to spend the funds for anything project-related (e.g. equipments, access to databases, travel costs etc). I only need to spend time reading related works, code a bit, and write a paper.

In other words, I would take take the fund as a salary for my academic labour.

Now, the application form asks me to explain how I plan to use the funding. What would be the best way to respond to this question when I only incur the personal costs covering the time for my intellectual work?

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    Who usually pays your salary? Are you currently employed by a university or similar to do research?
    – astronat
    Jul 9 '20 at 20:47
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    Why is stuff in quotes, you are asking for a salary, and it is intellectual? Jul 9 '20 at 21:44
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    It may be as simple as "Salary for the PI, N months at $XXXX per month", together with a justification as to why N months is an appropriate amount of time. Though keep in mind that some small grant programs may not be interested in funding salaries. Jul 10 '20 at 3:53
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    You should speak with your university's sponsored research office. They will know. Jul 10 '20 at 9:23
  • It would help to know more context- what country? what funding organization? Are you already employed by a university or other organization? Are you on a 9-month or 12-month contract? Jul 10 '20 at 17:54
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Now, the application form asks me to explain how I plan to use the funding. What would be the best way to respond to this question when I only incur the personal costs covering the time for my intellectual work?

Funding will cover x% of monthly salary costs for the PI, over the duration of the project. (The remaining y% will be funded by the PI's university to perform duties beyond the project scope.)

I only need to spend time reading related works, code a bit, and write a paper.

Those activities will require office space, IT equipment, etc. Those expenses can typically be included.

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    But then the university employer would actually see the benefit and the OP see nothing additional, either in money or in equipment or travel or ...
    – Buffy
    Jul 10 '20 at 10:41
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    "Those activities will require office space, IT equipment, etc. Those expenses can typically be included." In the US context, for federal research grants, these costs are not charged directly to the grant but are considered "indirect costs" These are lumped together at a negotiated %-age rate as "overhead". Your university will tell you what overhead rate to use on grant proposals. Jul 10 '20 at 17:52
  • @Buffy Yes.....
    – user2768
    Jul 10 '20 at 19:47
  • @BrianBorchers Exactly: It's a painful procedure
    – user2768
    Jul 10 '20 at 19:48

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