Frequently Asked Questions

What is ARIA's approach to soliciting the market?
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Open and transparent competition will be our default for sourcing all ARIA research funding recipients. However in certain circumstances, a direct award may be appropriate if in line with our commercial operating model.

Who can apply for ARIA research funding?
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We welcome solicited applications from across the R&D ecosystem, including individuals, universities, research institutions, small, medium and large companies, charities and public sector research organisations.

Scientific and technological breakthroughs often rely on a mix of academic and industrial capabilities that can be hard to find in a single organisation, so our programmes will deliberately reach across disciplines, sectors and institutions.

Is there a specific format for ARIA applications?
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Yes, detailed guidance on the application format and process will be provided as part of each funding call.

What cost information is required as part of the application process?
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We only ask for the level of information we need at each stage of the process, this means the amount of information required can range from a high level figure at the outset of a funding call, through to a full cost breakdown if you are shortlisted for the final stages. The exact cost information you need to provide will be included in each stage of the application process.

If we ask for a full cost breakdown this is the template we’ll use.

Are there any costs I can’t include in my application?
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You are encouraged to include the estimated costs for everything you require to deliver the proposed project, however there are some restrictions on what you can include, guidance on this can be found in ARIAs Eligible Expenditure guidance here.

I work at an academic institute, will you allow Full Economic Costings (FEC)?
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Yes, for academic institutions we will allow FEC. ARIA will pay 100% of eligible costs.

I don’t work at an academic institution, how do I treat overheads?
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For non academic institutes ARIA will allow 100% of eligible costs. There are two options for allocating overheads.

1) 25% of labour costs and 5% on external costs; or
2) Company calculated overhead rate. If this option is selected then evidence of your overhead rate will be required for agreement by ARIA.

Do I need to match funding?
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Where required, we’ll fund 100% of the costs. Matched funding is not essential.

That said, we welcome proposals for match funding in cases when such funding will strengthen the potential success or the UK benefit of a project. In those cases, match funding will be considered as part of the overall strength of the project proposal.

Would a programme pay for one or more PhD students?
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We’ll fund PhD students as part of our project funding provided they are identified in the application process.

Where agreed at the outset, even if the funded activities end early, we’re committed to maintaining PhD student payments through to completion of their programme.

What terms will be used for my funding agreement with ARIA?
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If you are successful, the type of Funding Agreement you will receive is dependent on a couple of factors: the activity being funded and the type of recipient.

Where the activity being funded is considered basic research (experimental or theoretical work undertaken primarily to acquire new knowledge of the underlying foundations of phenomena and observable facts, without any particular application or use in view/TRLs 1-3) and you are an Enterprise, ARIA will provide funding via a Basic Research Grant Agreement.

Where the activity being funded is considered to be more technologically mature but still research and development (TRLs 3-6) and you are an Enterprise, ARIA will provide funding via a Research Agreement.

Where the activity being funded is between TRLs 1-6 and you are not an Enterprise (e.g. a University or Individual), ARIA will provide funding via a Standard Grant Agreement or Individual Grant Agreement.

This framework of agreements has been developed to ensure compliance with the Subsidy Control Act.

Where can I find a copy of your template funding agreement?
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A copy of our draft agreement can all be found below. We’re currently working on finalising our standard funding agreements so these will be subject to change.

Standard Grant Agreement.

Standard Research Agreement

Basic Grant Agreement

Individual Grant Agreement

How do I know if I’m an Enterprise or not?
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Whether you are an Enterprise or not is guided by the definitions contained within the Subsidy Control Act.

An Enterprise is an organisation that provides goods or services on the market. Whether an entity is an Enterprise is determined by what it does, not who owns it or what legal form it takes.

For example, a limited company, a charity, a government agency, etc., can all be Enterprises. It doesn’t matter if the entity is profit-making or not.

An entity involved in both economic and non-economic activities is treated as an Enterprise only in relation to its economic activities (i.e. where it offers goods or services on a market).

For example, Universities are generally not considered to be Enterprises in relation to their ‘core’ educational and academic research functions, but a research organisation within a University carrying out contract research (e.g. for a pharma company) on a commercial basis would be an Enterprise in relation to that activity. If you are unsure you may need to seek independent advice.

What is ARIA’s approach to Intellectual Property?
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Recipients will own any new intellectual property generated as a result of the grant/contract.

We’ll need some rights to the new intellectual property to help us evaluate the outputs during the funding agreement period.

We’ve also included some provisions to support our mission of benefiting both the UK and the world, with this goal in mind, these provisions are carefully designed to avoid imposing significant hindrances on commercialisation. See the agreement for details.

What happens if I want to use the IP to spin out a startup?
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To encourage science startups led by inventors and enhance incentives for their subsequent scaling and growth we’ve included provisions in our funding agreements that:

  • Require grant recipients to give preference to inventors in licensing.
  • Limit the amount of equity a grant recipient and/or their affiliates can take or royalties they can charge when licensing ARIA funded IP.
Can/will ARIA fund outside the UK?
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Unless otherwise stated in each funding call, our primary focus will be on funding those who are based in the UK. However, funding will be available to organisations outside the UK if we believe it can significantly boost the potential impact or success of a programme that can benefit the UK.

What happens if I want to assign or sublicense the IP to someone outside of the UK?
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We want to maximise the benefits our funding can bring to the UK.

If you assign or license ARIA funded IP to a non-UK entity, or if you are a non-UK entity and commercialise ARIA funded IP, this will be subject to a small royalty fee.

What other obligations will I have to ARIA on commercialisation?
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We want to ensure that UK government organisations can benefit from the commercial products and services developed with ARIA funded IP.

If you sell products or services based on ARIA funded IP, you will have an obligation to supply products and services to the UK government organisations at a cost that is no greater than you sell to any other customer.

In addition, for contract research projects, your obligation is to supply products or services based on ARIA funded IP at a discount to government organisations for a period of time until the discounts reach a capped amount of ARIA’s costs.

What information am I required to submit to support payment?
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We’ll pay costs on a cost recovery basis, meaning that the costs will need to be incurred before they are charged to ARIA. We will request evidence of expenditure to support your invoices. We may also ask you for an updated forecast to completion of your project.

How frequently will I be paid?
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Payment will not be linked to milestone delivery. Instead, payment will be linked to your progress towards achieving the research outcomes and outputs. As such, payments will be made in arrears based on evidenced costs.

Payments will be made quarterly, however in exceptional circumstances we may agree monthly payments.

How will VAT work on projects?
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You should obtain your own VAT/tax advice. ARIA is not registered for VAT and is not able to recover VAT, your overall project value should include VAT if it is applicable.

How will I know who has been awarded funding?
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We will publish information on our programmatic activities, including recipients of funding.

Are you planning to provide funding via mechanisms other than Grants/Contracts?
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We are exploring multiple mechanisms to unlock scientific and technological breakthroughs.

We may choose alternative mechanisms such as prizes, joint ventures or other funding mechanisms.

We’ll identify the mechanism we intend to use or allow in each funding call.

What are ARIA’s accreditation and branding guidelines for funding recipients?
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A copy of ARIAs accreditation and branding guidelines can be found here.

Will ARIA funding include profit?
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For all grants, no profit margin is payable, and we’ll only fund costs.

For contracts, the profit margin payable will be capped at a maximum of 10%.