We finished off and submitted our latest funding bid earlier in the week.  It’s something we’ve been putting together across the summer and that has been a bit more challenging than at other times.  I must admit that having a funding call that we were very interested in, coming out on the Friday before I went on holiday wasn’t the best timing for us.  Fortunately it had been flagged up in the future funding calls for a while so we’d already done some thinking about things we wanted to do. 

Trying to do these sort of bids during the Summer presents some different challenges.  Bids tend to be increasingly collaborative in their nature so we involve people from other units, on project boards for example and getting their feedback on bid documents.  That means getting hold of all sorts of people, at a time when many academics are away for some time.  So getting stuff looked at and commented on can be tricky and takes longer.  And not everyone that you want to talk to is available.

Because we had been thinking about what we would want to do, we were able to get straight on with pulling the bid into shape.  We had a short summary document already and while I was away on leave colleagues started putting it into the right format for the funding document.  Having the document in the right format made it much easier to concentrate on filling in the gaps and getting people to contribute to it.  So it didn’t take us too long to get to a draft that could be refined and tidied up.

Despite the time of year we managed to get everything together in time.  But I do wonder if other people had the same problems about writing bids during the summer and whether it might impact on the number of bids the funding body gets this time round.