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FEATURE: Global research call – frequently asked questions

This section covers FAQ relating to the second global research call. Please read the full research call documentation closely before asking questions to ensure we have not already provided answers in our documentation. We will be adding to this section on a weekly basis whilst the research call is open in response to enquiries related to the call. If your query is not answered here, please contact Franziska Schwarz, the International Research Call Coordinator

1.    Key documents

1.1 Where can we find general information on the Research Call?

All information on research call can be found in the CDKN Global Research Call Announcement. Wider information on research under CDKN can be found on the CDKN Research webpage.

1.2 Where can we find the Proposal Template?

The proposal application form can be found here. Applications will only be accepted in this format.

1.3 Where can we find further guidance on completing the application template?

The proposal application guide can be found here. Please ensure you follow this closely when completing your application.

1.4 Is the Proposal Application Form also available in pdf format?

No. All applications must be submitted in Word format and completed electronically.

1.5 Where can we find information on ethics?

CDKN position on Research Ethics can be found in the Research Call Announcement, in Annex 2. This is based on the ESRC Framework for Research Ethics.


 2.      Application Eligibility and Processes

2.1 Who can apply?

CDKN invites applications from research institutions, universities, private sector organisations, civil society organisations and non-governmental organisations, provided they meet the eligibility criteria, as set out in the Research Call Announcement, Section 4.

CDKN will not fund studentships including PhDs, writing up results from previous research nor writing books, neither will it fund any of the organisations that form part of its management, or their employees under the agreement of CDKN with its funders.

2.2 Who are CDKN Alliance partners?

CDKN Alliance partners are those institutions that comprise the core management group of CDKN – PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC), the Overseas Development Institute, Fundación Futuro Latinoamericano, INTRAC, LEAD International, and SouthSouthNorth.

2.3 We have applied to CDKN before, can we re-apply?

Yes, CDKN is happy to fund organisations that have successfully received funding from CDKN, and CDKN is also happy to consider organisations that have already applied unsuccessfully and wish to apply again.

CDKN does not encourage applicants to re-submit unsuccessful proposals from previous funding rounds, unless excluded from the review process on eligibility grounds, which have now been resolved or the proposal has been substantially revised and can demonstrate this. It is expected that the aims, objectives, methodology, approach and dissemination plan will have been revised where necessary.

Proposals that have been submitted to a previous CDKN research call will only be considered if they are thematically relevant to this research call, directly addressing the research questions under this research call. Please contact the Research Team directly with any specific enquiry about this as we have records of all previous applications and decisions.

2.4 When is the deadline for submitting proposals? What if I am late to submit my proposal?

The deadline for submitting proposals is Monday 24th October 2011, 17:00 British Summer Time (GMT+1), sent to the following address: Any proposal received late (even a few minutes after the deadline) will be excluded from the review process, in order to ensure fairness for other applicants who have applied within the time limits. We strongly encourage you to send the application through well before this deadline. The CDKN Research Team will consider extreme extenuating circumstances for late submission, only if clear evidence is provided to back up the appeal, but please be aware that, in the last research call, only one appeal on these grounds was ultimately successful.

2.5 How do we know you’ve received our application successfully and are considering it?

We will notify the key contact person for each proposal of successful receipt of the application within 3 working days, or sooner if possible. The Research Team will initially apply eligibility criteria before proposals are sent to the review panel. Proposals that do not meet the eligibility criteria will be notified by 4th November 2011.

2.6 What is the process following unsuccessful application?

Applicants who do not meet the requirements and eligibility criteria of this call will be notified by 4th November 2011. These applications will not go forward to peer-review and therefore CDKN cannot comment on any substantive issues of the proposal.

Applicants that were unsuccessful under this call after the peer review panel have made funding recommendations will be notified by 15th February 2012. Comments made by the panel members will be provided.

2.7 Who is on the review panel?

The panel will consist of about 14-18 international climate change and development experts who will be chosen for their experience in this area, and their fit as a group to cover all essential topics within the call. The panel reviewing proposals is not fully in place yet. The majority of the panel will consist of experienced academics; we will also include some development practitioners with policy experience to advise on the effectiveness of the policy approaches in the proposal. The panel is chaired and facilitated by senior CDKN staff, and supported by the CDKN Research Team.

2.8 What is the process following successful application?

Notifications will be sent by email. Successful organisations will be notified by 15th February 2012. CDKN Research Team will organise an initial teleconference to discuss the proposal content, recommendations and comments from the panel, working relationship and the contracting process with the successful organisations and researchers. We seek to develop a strong, mutually-supportive working relationship throughout the project with our funded research projects.

2.9 When will final decisions be made? 

Final decisions on funding will be taken in January 2012 by CDKN senior management and the CEO of CDKN following panel recommendations.

2.10 When will awards be announced?

Successful organisations will be notified by 15th February 2012.

2.11 Will CDKN provide feedback on our proposal?

CDKN cannot provide feedback on proposals during the application phase. Panel comments are only available for those proposals that have met eligibility criteria and gone through the detailed review process. Once funding decisions have been made, CDKN will provide applicants with comments by the panel members.

2.12 If our application is unsuccessful can we re-apply?

There is no procedure within CDKN’s research calls for re-submission, as subsequent rounds of research funding will normally analyse different themes.

2.13 Is there a limit in the number of proposals an institution can submit?

There is no limit, given the institution and each of the proposals meet the eligibility criteria outlined in Section 4 Research Call Announcement; CDKN, however, would like to emphasise that institutions should ensure that they do not compromise the quality of individual proposals if they choose to submit more than one proposal. Proposals will be dealt with individually as ‘stand-alone’ documents by the panel – please ensure they are complete.

3.         Research Projects

3.1 Can we submit proposals in languages other than English?

Unfortunately, proposals can only be accepted in English. This is to ensure that peer review can be carried out by our external review panel without compromising their full understanding of the proposal. CDKN strongly advises applicants to seek translation and/or proof-reading by a fluent, technically-proficient, English speaker if English is not their first language.

3.2 Can CDKN comment on our proposal?

The CDKN Research Team is happy to help on administrative issues and clarifications related to the completion of the proposal and its documentation during the time that the call is open.  However, CDKN is unable to comment on the technical details of the proposal during the call phase (e.g. project summaries, research question detail, outputs and budget).

3.3 Can we arrange to meet with CDKN to discuss our proposal?

CDKN is unable to meet with individual applicants to discuss this research call or proposals. If you have any questions, please get in touch with the Research Team by email.

3.4 Is it possible to change research direction during the project, if expected outcomes do not materialise?

Any change in research direction must be discussed with the CDKN Research Team at the earliest possible opportunity. Please contact us by email in the first instance.

3.5 When does CDKN expect research to commence?

Projects are expected to start within 2 months of the contract commencement, i.e., 1st April 2012.

3.6 We cannot start research in the time period that CDKN requires but are still interested in applying for funding. What should we do?

We expect research funding to be taken up and completed in the time allotted. These are time-bound, relatively short research projects, intended for quick dissemination to policy makers.  If you think this issue applies to your research project, please contact the CDKN Research Team BEFORE submitting an application, with a short description outlining the situation and reasons for wishing to delay the uptake of the research grant. If the Research Team agrees that there is a very strong, valid reason for this delay, your application will be allowed to go forward to the peer review stage. Reasons might include, for example, onset of rainy season in country cases chosen, hindering primary research, or the need to align timing with research co-funding that has already been secured that has a different contracting schedule. Simultaneous research commitments or conflicting demands on researcher time are NOT a valid reason for delay in uptake. Please do not apply for funding if you do not expect to be able to put your plans into action quickly.

4.         Information

4.1 We still have an unanswered question. Who should we contact? 

For further questions, please contact Franziska Schwarz, the International Research Call Coordinator.


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