Award acceptance

Have you received an award contract?

Notify the Research Development Team who will arrange a contract signature on your behalf. Only LSE's authorised signatories can sign off the contract of award letter.

TOP TIP: Contact us at first point of contact with the funder so we can negotiate an agreement to suit your needs and LSE's.

If you have secured funding from a UK research council, charity, commercial body or government agency, you require a contract or award letter. In most cases this is issued by the funder and sent directly to Research and Innovation.

Notify the Research Development Team if you receive a contract or award letter directly  - email

8 items to consider when you get your award contract:

1. Negotiating your award contract

At first point of contact with the funder

State what you want to achieve from the project and what you wish to retain at the end of it.

Tell the Research Development Team of your requirements - email

LSE research contract templates

You may be offered a set contract from a funding body. However, ask Research and Innovation for LSE's own standard research contract templates. We adapt the templates to fit your project.

Request an LSE research contract from your Research Development Manager.

2. Collaborating with a research partner

Collaboration Agreement

A collaboration agreement is required for work involving at least one other research partner. It is important that this is set up before the project start date.

It sets out:

  • responsibilities, role and rights of collaborating parties working on a specific research project or set of projects 

All parties will be bound by the same terms and conditions, and the agreement typically sets out how the overall project will be managed between the parties.

An agreement is drawn up following a joint award/research funding agreement. The terms of your main award are reflected in the collaboration agreement.

The agreement may also contain funding terms, for example, a transfer of funding from the lead partner to the other collaborators, or the transfer of additional funding from a commercial partner. 

Discuss your collaboration agreement with the Research Development Team.

3. Sub-contractors and outsourcing

Proposal stage

Ask yourself  - does any work need to be sub-contracted or outsourced?

A sub-contract may be required and standard templates are available to use.

Contact the Research Development Team to set this up before the project start date. 

4. Contract signature

Research and Innovation negotiates research contracts and arranges for a contract signature on your behalf.

LSE may not commit to a contract until it has been agreed and signed by the authorised signatory in accordance with LSE financial regulations.

Ask Research and Innovation to organise your contract signature, email

5. Contract amendment

A project may need to be amended once your research has started.

Project extensions

Discuss this directly with the sponsor and the Research Awards Team as soon as possible.

Budget allocation

Contact the Research Awards Team. Associated contracts will need to be amended to reflect such changes.

Contract amendments

Contact the Research Development Team on

6. Intellectual property (IP)

Publication rights

The corner stone of academic research is the right to publicly disseminate the outcomes of the research. While there may be delays or publication restrictions (for example, confidentiality, the patenting process, or arrangements with the collaborators), LSE always seeks to protect this fundamental right in its research agreements.

This right to publish is also linked to the institution's academic mission and how it classifies its research activity. Any onerous restrictions need to be carefully considered from an academic perspective and also whether the activity itself may be defined as research. 

Intellectual property (IP)

Intellectual property (IP) is a key consideration and often the most contentious issue in an agreement. LSE will always try to ensure the rights of academics are protected with regard to the future use of their IP and the potential use of any new IP generated from a project.

Request an exchange in IP ownership

Contact the Research Development Team to assist in this negotiation and ensure that any project undertaken is advantageous to both the academic and the institution.

7. Transferring an existing grant

Moving institutions

Grants and contracts may be transferred when a researcher moves institutions.

Projects governed by contracts: e.g. industry funded, government department funded - the contract is usually terminated and a new contract negotiated with the institution to which the project will transfer.

Awards from research councils, charities and other grant bodies: the funding body will usually transfer the unspent portion of the funding. The institution releasing the grant and the institution receiving the funding must provide written agreement to the relevant funding body.

Contact the Research Development Team who will coordinate this process for you.


Further guidance