University of Leeds Forms Service

Culture Theme Pump Priming Scheme

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Please complete this form to apply for the Culture Theme Pump Priming Scheme.

General notes

Applications will usually be for a maximum of £1,000; projects which contain an international element can apply for a maximum of £2,000.

This scheme is open on a rolling basis with no fixed deadline – applications can be submitted at any time. Once the funds for the year have been allocated the scheme will close. Decisions on applications will be made as soon as possible following submission, and at the latest within 20 working days. 

Fund aim/strategic priorities and assessment criteria 

Applications for this fund will be considered against the degree to which projects address the fund aim and relevant strategic priorities, so it is very important that you explain these aspects of your project in your application. It is not expected that applications will address all of the strategic priorities.

The aim of the fund is to support the creation/development of collaborative interdisciplinary projects which have the potential to develop into ambitious funding applications.

The strategic priorities of the scheme are to support projects which will:

  • Have the potential to leverage external funding (usually in the form of large research grant applications);
  • Fit within one or more of the Theme’s subthemes;
  • Include membership from two or more faculties, research disciplines or University research themes;
  • Be international;
  • Include external collaborators, either from other research organisations and/or from other sectors entirely;
  • Produce high quality outputs and impact outcomes.

Applicant Eligibility

Applications must meet the scheme aim (to support the creation/development of collaborative interdisciplinary projects which have the potential to develop into ambitious funding applications). 

Lead applicants must be University of Leeds employees who are registered members of the Culture Theme (though not all team members need to be staff at Leeds: external collaborators from any sector and/or PGR students can form part of a team). You can register to the Culture theme via this online form.

Lead applicants must discuss their application before submission with the relevant Culture Theme sub-theme lead, if appropriate.

Eligible costs

  • Catering costs;
  • Travel costs for the lead applicant and other project members;
  • Room/venue hire;
  • Engaging project-specific interns and/or Research Assistants.

Please note that the following are not eligible costs for this scheme:

  • Buying out the time of staff who are already contracted at Leeds; 
  • IT/equipment purchase;
  • Conference attendance would not usually be a suitable cost for this fund.

Suitable applications may include (but are not limited to):

  • Running pilot projects;
  • Providing focused research assistance;
  • Convening meetings/sandpits/events with collaborating academics/external partners;
  • Market analysis to demonstrate the need for future research;

If awarded, the Lead Applicant must agree to update the Theme on the development and outcomes of the project at the required reporting points. 


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