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Innovation and excellence International Strategic Partnerships in Research and Education Strategic Partnerships Webinar Liz Dempsey Chris Leighton.

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Presentation on theme: "Innovation and excellence International Strategic Partnerships in Research and Education Strategic Partnerships Webinar Liz Dempsey Chris Leighton."— Presentation transcript:

1 Innovation and excellence International Strategic Partnerships in Research and Education Strategic Partnerships Webinar Liz Dempsey Chris Leighton

2 Workshop Structure Background to INSPIRE; Where we are now. Introduction to the Strategic Partnerships Awards Overview of the countries covered in this call General basic principles of making applications Preparing and submitting an application to INSPIRE INSPIRE Evaluation

3 What is INSPIRE? International Strategic Partnerships in Research and Education (INSPIRE) is a British Council project that aims to significantly strengthen the academic and research partnerships between the UK and countries in Central & South Asia, including: Pakistan, Bangladesh, Kazakhstan, Iran, and Afghanistan.

4 British Council and Higher Education Increasing the impact of our work in Higher Education Building on and consolidating our work in HE in Central & South Asia Committing to a significant engagement in reform at national and institutional levels Responding to domestic education reform agendas in participating Central & South Asia countries and the UK Targeting research areas of strategic importance to the participating countries and the UK Supporting key Central & South Asia priorities of developing leadership through education collaboration

5 What are the aims of INSPIRE? To strengthen UK - Central & South Asia links To raise the profile of UK - Central & South Asia partnerships as innovative and high quality, by demonstrating how researchers and academicians can collaborate effectively To contribute to mutual capacity building in HEIs through further development of staff, their professional skills and international research competencies To facilitate and build effective, sustainable partnerships based on research and / or teaching agendas To trial possible models for future co-operation between the UK and Central & South Asia HEIs

6 INSPIRE Overview INSPIRE is made up of a number of separate activity strands: Grant funded activity Strategic Partnership Awards Talented Researcher Exchange Programme Exploratory Partnership Grants Complimentary Activity Education Policy Dialogues Leadership Programmes Market intelligence reports

7 Strategic Partnership Awards

8 Developing institution-to-institution links based on a number of different areas of activity Multi-dimensional, international relationships involving different levels and departments within the universities An innovative mix of activities including research co-operation, teacher exchange, curriculum development, student exchange, collaborative programme development Sustainable partnerships that achieve significant long-term impact Awards of up to £45,000 spread over 3 years available (£15,000 p.a. maximum)

9 Strategic Partnership Awards - Continued Mutuality and Complementarity – in terms of input from each of the partners A high quality, joint proposal Evidence of sustainability of activity post funding Deadline for submission – 8 th October 2009

10 INSPIRE Eligible Partners Eligible partners are UK based publicly funded Higher Education Institutions and government-recognised (either public or private) HEIs in the following countries: Afghanistan Bangladesh Kazakhstan Uzbekistan Pakistan* (Update on the Situation)

11 INSPIRE Eligible Partners - Continued For Bangladesh, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan funding will be for a maximum of three years. The maximum award for a bilateral institution-to-institution partnership is £15,000 per annum. Complex, larger scale projects which involve a larger number of institutions or countries may bid for an award up to a maximum of £30,000. In Afghanistan, funding will also be for a maximum of three years. The maximum award is £10,000 per year.

12 INSPIRE Targets Target number of INSPIRE Strategic Partnership awards for Afghanistan – 2 Bangladesh – 6 Kazakhstan – 3 Uzbekistan – 4 Pakistan - Separate guidelines to be announced in October 2009

13 INSPIRE Projects Funded INSPIRE Projects We received 91 Applications for funding in 08/09. Bangladesh – 4 Kazakhstan – 2 Pakistan – 10 Full List of the successful applicants is available on our website, along with the names of their partner colleges.

14 INSPIRE Priority Subject Areas - Afghanistan The priority subject areas for Afghanistan are Education: There is a special interest in student counselling services in a post conflict situation. However proposals are not limited to this area and applications around general education issues are also welcomed Strategic Partnership Awards in Afghanistan are open to other subject areas Including Engineering Computers Natural Sciences Social Sciences Geosciences Medicine Languages Veterinary Science

15 Afghanistan Cross-sector eagerness and enthusiasm: to engage with international academic community discover new knowledge Learn new technologies Opportunities Lots of potential for development Market not saturated Security Limited to Kabul Local British Council office would actively support: Logistics, Security, Communications

16 Afghanistan Major Higher Education reforms 10 Year Higher Education Strategy (part of ANDS) Broad aim: meet needs of the Afghan public and private sector match international standards 4 main areas for reform: curriculum development and reform; faculty and staff development facility development system reform and management improvement Specific Targets: By end 2010, student enrolment - 100,000 By end 2010, at least 35% female students

17 INSPIRE Priority Subject Areas - Bangladesh The priority subject areas for Bangladesh are Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering English Language with a focus on Teaching Methodology Environment and Climate Change Fine Arts, Theatre and Fashion Renewable and Alternative Energy

18 Bangladesh Why Bangladesh? Growing demand of higher education UGC receives huge proposals/ applications for research grants BGL Researchers, HEIs and faculty members are very keen to establish link with UK Researchers/ HEIs Good communication network Obtaining UK visa relatively easier

19 INSPIRE Priority Subject Areas – Uzbekistan The priority subject areas for Uzbekistan are Creative Industries including, but not limited to, textiles & crafts Economic Development and International Relations Environment and Climate Change Higher Education including, but not limited to, quality assurance, employability and lifelong learning Tourism and Leisure

20 INSPIRE Priority Subject Areas – Kazakhstan The priority subject areas for Kazakhstan are Biotechnology Education with a focus on education policy & planning Environment and Climate Change

21 Kazakhstan - Trends in Higher Education 100% increase in HE student enrolment Admission through Unified National Test for school leavers Funding options Student mobility President International Bolashak Scholarship

22 Eligibility criteria Open to accredited UK Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) Each project must be a joint submission by the UK and one of the eligible countries. UK Project Leaders should be based in a UK University and they should normally be a UK citizen; EU citizens are also eligible provided they hold a position in a UK institution. Project Leaders in the partner institution should be based in a government-recognised HEI institution (public or private). They should normally be a citizen of the partner country or, if not, should have worked for a minimum of 3 years in the institution. Existing partnerships currently in receipt of grants that support their partnership (eg DelPHE, PMI2) are not eligible to apply. Please see the guidelines for all eligibility criteria

23 What are the funding principles of INSPIRE? INSPIRE funding core principles: Investment for pump priming initiatives Partner institutions will be required to commit to and invest in these activities INSPIRE is concerned with encouraging people to people co- operation and therefore directed primarily at mobility Institutions receiving support will be obliged to share experience and best practice

24 What will INSPIRE not fund? INSPIRE will not be able to support Full economic costing of projects - staff costs – salaries Marketing and promotion activities associated with international student recruitment to the UK - Conference participation/attendance Duplication of activities already undertaken through existing initiatives – if your partnership is already being funded by another scheme you will need to demonstrate additionality purchase and/or lease of equipment or capital items, institutional overheads or recurrent costs funding activities in, and travel to, countries other than between the UK and the partner country. Proposed collaborations where the lead partner in the partner country is, in effect, a wholly owned subsidiary of the lead partner in the UK

25 Additional help The INSPIRE project also provides separate exploratory grants to support partnership development visits for institutions – Deadline is 19 th November. See the full set of Strategic Partnership Exploratory Grant Guidelines at:

26 British Council Contact Details Afghanistan: Jenny Blinkhorn Uzbekistan: Shukhrat Amanov Kazakhstan: Ulpash Kanzhigalina, Bangladesh: Omar Faruque

27 What makes a successful partnership? Committed individuals Project managers who work well together Flexibility of systems Networks Project embedded in institutions development strategy and long- term agenda Working with British Council and other local contacts to help with recognition issues, face to face meetings always best!

28 A Detailed Look at The Application Process and Forms

29 General Basic Principles Timing the preparation of your application Using the guidance provided Understand the requirements and providing the information requested Presentation of your application (including how sections relate) Format and word / space limits Attachments Deadlines

30 INSPIRE Application Process Section A / Page 1 – General Details Section B – Information about applicants Section C – Proposal Section D – Professional Experiences of the Proposed Groups Section E – Financial Proposal: Funding Required from INSPIRE project funding Section F - Monitoring & Evaluation Section G – Long Term Sustainability Peer Review Signatures

31 Page 1 – General Details 1Project Title 2Key Subject Words 3Project Objectives 4Where did you hear about INSPIRE A.5 & 6Project timing B.7 Key members of UK team B.8Key members of CSA team B. 9Is this a New Link

32 Section C –The Proposal Page 3 C.10Overview C.11Technical Details C.12 Activity plan / Work Plan C.13 & 13aOutputs and Impact Output 1Research Output 2Teaching Output 3Professional Development / Staff Development C.14 Exchanges of Staff & Students

33 Section D – Professional Experiences of the proposed groups D.15 UK Project Team D.16CSA Project Team

34 Section E – Financial Proposal and Funding E.17aSummary of total funds required from INSPIRE over the period of the project (£ Sterling) E.17bOther sources of funding

35 INSPIRE 2009 Awards Spreadsheet INSPIRE Funds Requested Detail UK Partner Institution: CSA Partner Institution: Project Name: International travel CSA travel Accommodation/Allowances Consumables/Reagents Other eligible costs related to movement of people 5% contingency

36 Section F – Monitoring & Evaluation F.18Monitoring & Evaluation Arrangements Section G – Long Term Sustainability G.19Ensuring Long Term Sustainability Peer Review Signatures

37 INSPIRE Evaluation Criteria Eligibility - Institutions, project team members Academic and research merit – Design and deliverability, technical content, process, management, dissemination, ethics and IPR INSPIRE Specific Criteria – Mutuality and complimentarity, additionality, contribution to step-change, sustainability Financial proposal – Value for money, contributions, compliance / eligibility of charges to INSPIRE

38 What will the Evaluation Panel look for in an application? There will be a 4 stage approach to evaluating proposals: Initial Screening: Undertaken by the British Council project team (UK and partner country). Designed to eliminate technically ineligible proposals. Main output is a priority list of applications. External Assessment: All projects on the priority list will go out to external peer review. Selection Panel: Proposals and peer reviews will be assessed by an independent Selection Panel. Project Board Agreement: The Selection Panel will submit to the Project Board a prioritised final list of projects for consideration; along with the comments from the Selection Panel.

39 Monitoring and Evaluation Monitoring and Evaluation is crucial to your project. We need to ensure that the project is achieving its strategic aims and objectives and that project funds are spent appropriately. Annual Reports – A detailed description of the projects achievements, objectives and any problems encountered. Financial Report – A detailed account of project spend. Please keep all of your receipts. Healthcheck – Six monthly. Relatively Informal. Just to keep us informed of any issues or developments.

40 Timelines Deadline 8 th October 2009 Electronic copies to be received by midnight We also require hard copies – these can be forwarded at a slightly later date. We do however require electronic copies of all signatures by 8 th October 2009

41 Who should I contact? All queries to the INSPIRE team: e. t w.

42 What happens if you are successful with your application

43 What is the role of the British Council? Projects will be assumed to be self-managing, however there will be contact with the INSPIRE team. The British Council will: provide ad hoc support for your partnership provide an up to date virtual support site monitor and evaluate your project create opportunities to share best practice

44 What is the role of the Project Manager? The responsibility of the project manager is: to ensure the project is on track, meeting aims and objectives; to take the lead in working with your UK partner; to work with your UK partner when filling in Monitoring and Evaluating forms for the British Council.

45 When should I contact the British Council? You should seek British Council support : if the project is not on track to meet aims, objectives or work plans; if you need official confirmation of the funding; if there are issues with the exchanges; if there is breakdown in communication with your partner; if you have a great story you want to get out to the wider INSPIRE community and/or the public.

46 Frequently Asked Questions Who has signed the grant letter? - the UK institution on behalf of your partnership When is the exact starting date of my project? - when the grant letter was signed - please check with your partner Where will the British Council transfer the INSPIRE funds to? - to your UK partner - funding is to be transferred across the partnership as you and your UK - partner feel is most appropriate. - the British Council does not provide guidelines as to how the funding should be transferred. - suggest is that you sort this issue out at the beginning of your project

47 Frequently Asked Questions What are the monitoring & reporting requirements? - We require annual reports, with full finance documentation. We will provide the pro forma for you to use. There will be a less formal project Health check as well to ensure everything is ok. Do we now create additional work plans for the year ahead? - no, please refer to the plans submitted by you in your proposal, these will be added to a grant offer letter, and you will be required to deliver against this plan What happens if we want to change something on our project? - the grant letter allows you to make some changes to your proposal without having to notify the British Council - if you are unsure if you are allowed to make a particular change, please do get in touch.

48 Frequently Asked Questions What happens if there are changes in the delivery teams? - If, for example, the lead researchers change please do notify as soon as possible - please let us know about changes Can the British Council provide support in getting visas to the UK? - yes, with a letter of support - please requests to Airfares are becoming increasingly expensive with the rise in fuel costs. Can funds be moved across categories in this way? Or will there be any increase in allocations for flights in line with the significant rise in prices? - we do not have any more funds to distribute to cover these unforeseen costs. - 5% contingency fee - flexibility for the funds under subsistence to be used on flights. - we would not allow funds moving from the mobility parts of the budget to consumables or other costs. - advising project managers to perhaps book flights in advance to get cheaper deals.

49 Any more questions? Your Questions: If we did have a partnership which we wanted to explore/develop which is not in the designated subject field (Biotechnology), but if it was a strong and positive partnership otherwise, would it be considered or not? Any Other Questions?

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