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Research Operations Office


Published on Fri, 04/09/2020 - 11:38

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) has awarded a COVID-19 Grant Extension Allocation (CoA) to UK organisations to support costed extensions to grants affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. It expects organisations to use CoA funds to ensure that:

  1. UKRI grant outcomes continue to be met;
  2. the value of its grant investments continue to be realised, and
  3. to sustain grant-funded research skills and capability of UK research organisations that will be needed to underpin the post-pandemic national recovery.

The University has convened a Governance Committee with representation from each School, chaired by the PVC-R, in order to determine how this award should be spent in line with UKRI’s expectations.

A major expenditure from the award will be to provide funds to support UKRI grants affected by the COVID-19 pandemic with priority given to projects ending by 31 March 2021 (in accordance with UKRI’s expectations), where there is demonstrable need to support the career development of the staff employed and delivery of the grant objectives. This support will consist of three months’ staff salary, costed at 80% fEC (allowing for 100% of the Directly Incurred staff costs, as usual). Overheads will be awarded to the chest: department in a ratio of 80:20 as is normal. Individuals who have benefited from the University’s contract extension scheme will not be offered support from the CoA. 

A questionnaire is being sent to all PIs of priority awards in order to assess that need. This information will be used to assess eligibility for the CoA award and to report on expenditure to UKRI. Awards ending before 31 October 2020 will be assessed first, and PIs of awards ending after 31 October will be contacted in due course.

Note that in general, a grant is not eligible for a no-cost extension (NCE) and a CoA supplement. Therefore, PIs will need to determine whether it will be more advantageous to accept a CoA supplement or a NCE but not both. The exception to this is where a NCE was approved before 31st July 2020.  

UKRI has published some FAQs and their T&Cs regarding the CoA award. In particular, points 3.10 – 3.14 were updated at the end of August 2020. If you have any questions about the CoA, please contact