Researchfish FAQs for staff

FAQs for staff

What do I need to do?

RCUK expects all their PIs to submit outcomes information during an annual submission period.

Actions required include:

When is the next submission period?

The next RCUK submission period will be 6th February - 16th March 2017. Researchers will need to log on to Researchfish and submit their return between the start of 6th February 2017 and 4pm on the 16th March 2017. However, Researchfish is open for researchers to enter details at any time.

Does this submission period apply to all funders?

A number of other public funders and 20 medical research charities also seek feedback from researchers via Researchfish. The majority of these (e.g. NIHR, BHF and CRUK) are expected to bring their submission periods in line with RCUK, although this has yet to be confirmed.

How and when will I be contacted?

Emails from RCUK and/or Researchfish will be sent to the email address for each PI that is listed in Je-S, starting in early January 2017. Please be sure to check your email; if you do not receive a communication you are expecting, let us know.

Will a sanctions policy be applied?

It is now a condition of receiving funding from Research Councils that the principal investigator (PI) completes Researchfish. Investigators are asked to complete Researchfish each year during the award and for a number of years after the award has finished. Failure to complete Researchfish can result in sanctions for PIs until such time as they provide feedback on their outputs.

The harmonised cross-Council Sanctions Policy is available at: http://www.rcuk.ac.uk/documents/research/officialrcukrfrequirementsandsanctions-pdf/

Is it mandatory that I submit outcomes for my grant?

Yes. If the required annual update for an award is not submitted on time, the Research Council may apply the following sanctions: the researcher may be unable to apply (either as a Principal Investigator or as a Co-Investigator) for further awards from any Research Council OR if the award is still current, payments for the award may be withheld, until such time as the PI becomes compliant.

There is now a harmonised cross-Council Sanctions Policy which applies to all Research Council funded award holders from 2015 (note - this does not apply to students).

It states: "All RCUK-funded researchers ... are required to provide an annual update of information relating to the outputs, outcomes and impacts (referred to as research outcomes) that arise from their RCUK funded research ...(and) to provide these updates annually during the period of the awards and usually for five years after their awards have finished." 

The harmonised cross-Council Sanctions Policy is available at: http://www.rcuk.ac.uk/documents/research/officialrcukrfrequirementsandsanctions-pdf/

Do I need to submit outcomes for a grant that ended several years ago?

Researchers are asked to provide updates annually during the period of the awards and usually for five years after their awards have finished.

Where there are no new outcomes to submit, you can indicate this by adding “not applicable this year” as an answer to the mandatory questions, and clicking the submit button in the usual manner.

Researchers also have the opportunity to discuss with RCUK when they feel that no further outcomes will arise from an award and request that the award is ‘closed’ in Researchfish. If you think this is the case, you can contact: researchoutcomes@rcuk.ac.uk

What do I do if I do not have any outcomes to report?

Where there are no new outcomes to submit, you can indicate this by adding “not applicable this year” as an answer to the mandatory questions, and clicking the submit button in the usual manner.

Researchers also have the opportunity to discuss with RCUK when they feel that no further outcomes will arise from an award and request that the award is ‘closed’ in Researchfish. If you think this is the case, you can contact: researchoutcomes@rcuk.ac.uk.

Should PhD students submit outcomes for their studentships?

The last Submission Period was the first time that all RCUK-funded Students were asked provide us with research outcomes from their Studentship awards. After considering the information gathered and the feedback received, RCUK has decided to make some changes to the requirements.

For 2017, this means that RCUK will only be asking for students who are in the third or later year of their studies to submit their outcomes, i.e. students whose awards started on or before the 5 February 2015. While a small number of new students may be added to Researchfish (subject to the information provided via the Je-S student data portal), no new cohorts of studentships will be added to the system before the 2017 Submission Period (note, however, that there are a small number of Students who were included in the submission period last year whose studentship started after 5 February 2015. To keep things simple RCUK has taken the decision not to remove these students from the system and would still ask them to submit.)

Please note:

a) The common sanctions policy does not apply to students, though overall institutional compliance may be considered in making future doctoral training awards.

b) RCs may publish details of the outcomes that students enter through various channels including Gateway to Research.

What should I do if I am no longer at UOB or am on a period of extended (e.g. maternity) leave?

Research Organisations have a responsibility to confirm annually with the Research Councils which grants are expected to complete an annual outcomes submission and for ensuring compliance of grant holders at their organisation. If there are reasons why this is not possible or appropriate, we are able to flag an award accordingly. Please contact research-outcomes@bristol.ac.uk if you think this applies to you.

What should I do if I can’t see one of my awards?

Awards are added to Researchfish when your Funding Organisation supplies them with the required information. Depending how frequently your Funding Organisation supplies this information, a new award may not appear in the system immediately. Alternatively, your award may be listed against a different individual (e.g. a previous PI).

If the details relating to an award/grant associated with your account are incorrect, you should contact your funder in the first instance as Researchfish are unable to change award details. You can contact your funder through the Researchfish website: https://eval.researchfish.com/helpwiz/contactfunder

If you have issues with the Researchfish system, please contact support@researchfish.co.uk
If you have queries related to an RCUK award, please contact researchoutcomes@rcuk.ac.uk.

Can I use my Pure entries to copy and paste information in to Researchfish?

You can copy and paste any information you enter in to Pure by extracting the data as a Word document, for example:

What happens to my data?

RCUK wants to exploit the outcomes data information fully and share with others, in order to convey the quality and impact of the UK research base. Outcomes information from Researchfish is published via the RCUK Gateway to Research (http://gtr.rcuk.ac.uk/).

Read more on the new Researchfish Why Report? page.

Where can I find further information?

Contacts: