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The COVID19 outbreak is fast accelerating and having a major impact on students and researchers, as well as their families and friends across Scotland. The universities in Scotland are all moving to on-line classes and lectures and encouraging working from home, whilst ensuring limited cover is maintained on campus for essential services.
Our office has now closed but we continue our activities remotely, with all staff working from home. We are only an email or tweet away if you have any questions!
If you are in receipt of a Carnegie grant or award, have applied for one, review applications for us, or serve on one of our selection committee, please read the following information.
Many students are likely to see interruptions to study and postponement of placements, etc. and hence delays in completing UG courses. In the unlikely event, that a student we are already supporting is required to pay additional fees we shall cover these if SAAS will not.
In the week beginning 23rd March, we will announce the awards of Vacation Scholarship for the coming summer. However, many students may find that their project cannot actually run. Before offering a grant, we will ask students and supervisors to confirm that the project can go ahead and, if it is, to provide a statement that the necessary facilities will be available and appropriate safety arrangements will be in place.
The Posters Event for Vacation Scholars, at which they present their results, is currently planned for September but may be cancelled if only a small number of projects run.
Current Carnegie Scholars
Many Carnegie PhD Scholars will be facing the temporary closure of their lab or department. Should you be unable to continue your research as a result, your supervisor and yourself should notify us by email immediately. If your research suffers from delays, now or in the next few months (for example, you might find yourself having to reschedule interviews, postpone short visits for field-work, etc.), please discuss the situation with your supervisor and get in touch with us.
It will be difficult initially to determine what the impact might be for your studies so we are going to continue stipend payments for the time being and will consider extension requests on a case-by-case basis when students are able to return to their studies.
The review of applications for this year’s round of PhD Scholarships is proceeding as normal as all our peer review is done remotely and online. The Selection Committee will meet virtually at the beginning of May and we aim to email applicants with the outcome of this year’s competition by mid-May 2020.
Current grant recipients
As is our usual practice, we will take a sympathetic and pragmatic approach to enable researchers to make reasonable changes to research grant budgets. We will also allow no-cost time extensions to enable grant recipients to adapt and manage their research schedule as best as possible.
If your Carnegie-funded research is affected, or likely to be affected in the near future, there is no need to contact us at the moment. When you have greater certainty as to when you can resume/start your research then get in touch with us so we can agree new project dates and/or budgetary changes.
Applicants – March 2020 round
We are about to start reviewing the March 2020 RIG submissions, with the aim of reaching decisions by the end of June. Obviously, we hope that there will be no significant delays in getting decisions out to applicants but we may have to change our schedule if the peer review process is affected. We will keep applicants informed of any delays. Successful applicants will also be able to delay the start of their award, as necessary.
Peer review and panel meetings
We rely on the availability of peer reviewers and panel members to make decisions on our awards. All panel and selection committee meetings will go ahead by videoconference until further notice. At the time of closing online application for the current round on 17th March, we had received 130 applications, up from 102 in September 2019. This means we will need to call upon more reviewers at a time when many academics may not be available. We will do our best to keep to our schedule but, realistically, delays are likely.
If you review for us, we thank you for your support in these challenging times. We could not proceed without your expertise and time. If, when we approach you with a review request, you are unable to review or will need more time, do let us know.