How to contact us

Tower One, Room 7.01

LSE Research Division

Houghton Street

London, WC2A 2AE

United Kingdom


Phone: +44 (0) 20 7106 1202




Office hours: 9.30 am to 5.30 pm.

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Managing your award


Professional services from the Research Division

The Research Awards team coordinate, manage and provide support in all aspects of research grant management. We ensure compliance with internal financial regulations and the regulations of research funding bodies, and manage contractual relationships for externally funded research. 

We allocate a research awards manager to each academic department and research centre providing a single point of contact for all projects within that unit. Discuss any aspect of your research project with your research awards manager.

Need to discuss a grant application? Contact your grant applications manager.

Receipt of contract or award letter

Contracts or award letters received by the principal investigator must be sent to the Research Development team who will arrange for formal LSE acceptance.
Further information on contract signatures.

How we can help you

Once accepted, your project will be passed to the Research Awards team. Your designated research awards manager will provide:

  • A unique project account code, to which all related staff appointments and research expenses are charged.  No expenditure should be incurred outside of the agreed start and end dates.
  • A Project Information Report (PIR), providing a synopsis of the project including a budget breakdown and deliverables. If you have not received this for your project notify the Research Awards team.
  • Access to Aptos (the LSE's accounting system) so that all financial transactions can be viewed electronically by the award holder and basic statements of expenditure obtained.

Throughout the project period your research awards manager will assist with:

  • seeking approval for changes in the use of the awarded funding
  • amending the project start date
  • extending the project end date
  • any absences (eg maternity/adoption leave, or extended sickness) which may or may not be funded by the project
  • any changes to the status of the principal investigator (eg transferring to another institution)
  • any correspondence with the funding body
  • financial responsibilities
  • setting up budgets on project accounts and reviewing expenditure against budget
  • authorisation of project expenditure including advice on eligibility
  • completion of financial claims or invoices to the funding body
  • processing of estates and indirect costs in line with TRAC requirements
  • ensuring that funds are spent within project period
  • authorising staff appointments
  • debt chasing on outstanding payments from funding bodies
  • project reporting and other deliverables
  • year end and ad-hoc income and expenditure reports
  • advising on the VAT status of projects
  • closure of project accounts
  • any queries you have regarding your project

Financial management

Claiming expenses

Key information:

  • All claims funded by a research project must be authorised by the Research Awards team.  Send completed claims to your research awards manager.  Claims must be accompanied by original receipts plus a photocopy of the receipts on an A4 sheet.
  • LSE staff are required to claim expenses using the expense claim form available online or in hard copy from the Finance Division. Your department head or line manager will need to authorise the claim form. Download the staff expense claim form [Excel] and our step-by-step guide [PDF]. 
  • For European Commission funded projects through the Research Directorate-General (DG), the European Research Council (ERC) and Marie-Curie Actions, you need to complete the FP7 expense claim form. The form provides additional information needed for financial reporting and separates out VAT and other ineligible expenses. Download and complete the EC expense claim form [Excel] and our step-by-step guide [PDF].
  • Non LSE staff should claim expenses using the payment request form [PDF].
  • Expenses incurred overseas are required to be converted using the exchange rate published on [External link]. 
  • Claims are paid in accordance with the Finance Division's payments timetable [Excel].
  • Claims must comply with LSE financial regulations [intranet].
  • Further guidance is available from Accounts Payable [intranet].
  • Claimants should also liaise with their department or centre manager to check local practice.

Making travel arrangements

Key information:

  • Check your award terms and conditions or your Project Information Report (PIR) to see if you have been allocated a budget for travel.
  • Always seek value for money.  View the LSE Travel Policy [intranet].  Before booking flights check what class of travel is allowed.  View the Air Travel Class Policy [intranet].
  • We recommend the use of LSE approved suppliers. Key Travel [Word], Co-Operative Travel [Word] and Redfern Travel [external link] are all approved suppliers who can provide quotes or assist with bookings.  If you find a more reasonable flight on the internet you can also book via online travel booking companies such as and 
  • Keep all e-tickets, boarding passes, receipts and proof of travel. These may be needed by the Research Awards team to reclaim the costs from the funder.
  • If you are unsure of the correct procedure contact your research awards manager for advice.

Travelling abroad on LSE business? 

Travel safety is coordinated by LSE's Health & Safety Team who will assess travel risk and issue the travel cover note on a case-by-case basis. To request travel insurance email in good time, particularly if travelling to a high risk area. They need to know:

  • Travel destination
  • Reason for travel
  • Travel dates

Where travel is to a sanctioned country or an area where the FCO advise "against all travel" or "essential travel only", specific approval from the insurance underwriter is needed. A risk assessment and risk mitigation will need to be in place before cover is requested.

View the list of sanctioned countries [Word]

View government foreign travel advice [external link]

Recruiting staff

Key Information:

  • The recruitment of staff on a research project is handled by Human Resources (HR) in consultation with your research awards manager. Full guidance on recruiting staff [HR intranet] 
  • Check local practice within your department or centre before proceeding. Some departments require prior written approval from the head of department. Contact your department or centre manager for advice.
  • Your research awards manager will ensure that funds permit the appointment and that it meets LSE and any funder-specific requirements.
  • There is specific guidance for appointing self-employed consultants and sub-contractors.   A number of documents must be completed before the appointment can be made.  Full details on contracting self-employed staff [Finance Division intranet]    
  • A casual contract can be used when a person is employed on a one-off basis for not more than 35 hours (inclusive of all preparation work) in total over a period of not more than one month.  
  • Appointees with an irregular work pattern who work in excess of these limits will need an hourly paid contract.
  • Appointees working full-time or with a fixed part-time working pattern will need a standard salaried contract. 
  • New employees are required to download and complete Employee details form [PDF] and P46 [PDF]. 

Failed recruitment:

Unable to attract the right calibre of candidate for your research project?  Worried that it will impact the project schedule?  Funders such as the UK Research Councils would be sympathetic to such situations and open to extending the project end date as long as it is fully justified. To prevent such situations include contingency time in your project plan from the outset and advertise posts as widely as possible.

Useful links:


Staff working on European Commission (EC) funded projects are required to complete timesheets on a monthly basis. Further information and the timesheet template forms are available on our timesheets FAQs page.

Full economic costing

LSE has adopted the principles on costing and pricing recommended by the Joint Costing & Pricing Steering Group (JCPSG) to establish the full economic cost (fEC) of funded research activity. There are three cost categories:

  1. Directly incurred costs -  costs that are specific to a project and explicitly identifiable as arising from the conduct of the research.  Include: staff costs dedicated to a project (e.g. research officers, research assistants, technicians, clerical support), travel and subsistence, books, survey fees, publication costs, consumables, equipment.  Charged on an actual cost basis and supported by an audit record.
  2. Directly allocated costs -  costs of resources used by a project that are shared by other activities.  Include: principal investigator and co-investigator costs (unless directly incurred), estates costs, pooled staff.  Charged on the basis of estimates.  Estates costs are a fixed charge based on project FTE.  
  3. Indirect costs - intended to cover general office consumables, library services, learning resources, finance, HR, public relations, departmental services.  Fixed charge based on project FTE.

The full economic cost of your project would have been established at the application stage by the Research Development team.  Material changes to the estimated FTE hours of directly allocated staff should be discussed with your research awards manager as they will impact the project budget.  For further information contact your research awards manager.

Procurement rules

Key information:

  • LSE financial regulations require that value for money is sought when payments in excess of £8k are made to external consultants or organisations. Written pricing quotations from a range of supplies are required.
  • The Purchasing Services team assist with undertaking competitive tenders, manage all EU procurement activities and advise on day-to-day procurement matters. To ensure that any funder-specific requirements are met consult your research awards manager.
  • When purchasing any goods or services you must use the list of approved suppliers.  Find an approved supplier.
  • IT equipment such as laptops, PCs, tablets, mobile phones and other items available from IMT can be purchased using the IT procurement website

Useful links:

Research Infrastructure and Investment Fund (RIIF) awards

The Research Committee RIIF Fund is one of three types of Research Infrastructure and Investments Funds established by the LSE Research Incentives Policy.

The Research Committee has provided for a general category, RIIF Open Fund, as well as two specific funding initiatives: 1) RIIF Seed Fund; and2) RIIF Bridging Fund.

View funding opportunities and details of forthcoming application deadlines.

If you have been awarded funds under one of these schemes, our Research Development team, will be able to assist you.  They can be contacted on:

Principal investigator duties

As principal investigator (PI) you are the budget holder and have responsibility for managing the overall project and award received by the funder.

Key information:

  • Be clear about your responsibilities as PI.  We have summarised who is responsible for each area of research award management throughout the project life cycle. View our summary of areas and responsibilities [PDF].
  • Read the project terms and conditions carefully. Make yourself aware of the project requirements and deliver to the highest standard within the agreed timeframe.  Subject to local practice your department will usually provide support in the administrative tasks and duties associated with the research, such as completing and submitting expenses; monthly timesheets; budget and expenditure management or monitoring; recruitment of staff; and reporting requirements. Your project may also have funds available for dedicated administrative support to assist with the above duties and tasks.
  • Read the Project Information Report (PIR) provided by the Research Awards team. This will summarise:
    • awarded budget
    • project period
    • deliverables and timetable
    • reporting requirements – financial and scientific
    • events/workshops
    • impact reports
    • useful information regarding the management and running of the project/award

Moving to another institution?

If you have an existing project at LSE and are moving to another institution you may be able to take the project with you.  Where the funder requires that the project remains at the original host institution a new principal investigator will be required to complete the project. Contact the Research Awards team to discuss your options.

PI for a European Commission FP7 grant?

It is vital that holders of a European Commission 7th Framework Programme (FP7) project take note of the Commission's new guidance on acceptable criteria for an extension to a Grant Agreement and missed reporting deadlines. The Commission is concerned that the percentage of FP7 grants extended through an amendment has reached an unacceptable level, delaying the availability of results and their dissemination and exploitation. Going forward, the Commission has given notice that extensions will only be granted where there is a clear added value for the project, or where unforeseeable external events render it impossible to complete the work in the agreed timeframe. The Commission has also noted a widespread non-respect of the reporting deadlines set out in the Grant Agreement. Prompter moves towards termination of the Grant Agreement will be made if reports are not provided on time. View the full guidance [PDF]. 


Reporting requirements 

Reporting requirements are detailed in the contract or award letter and summarised in the Project Information Report provided by the Research Awards team at the project outset. 

Your research awards manager is responsible for submitting all financial reports on your behalf, whether online or hard copy. Each project has specific reporting requirements. To discuss submitting your report, contact your research awards manager.

Eight points you need to consider when reporting:

  1. When is the report due?
  2. Who is responsible for compiling the report?
  3. Who is responsible for submitting the report? 
  4. Does a specific reporting form need to be used?
  5. Is institutional approval required?
  6. How many copies are needed?
  7. Have you sent a copy of the report to your research awards manager?
  8. Have you deposited a copy of the final report in LSE Research Online?

If the requirements are unclear your research awards manager can help.  Notify your research awards manager at the earliest opportunity if a reporting deadline cannot be met. Contact your research awards manager.

Main UK Sponsor links:

British Academy report forms [external link]

ESRC guidance for grant holders [external link]

ESRC - National Centre for Research Methods (NCRM) guidance instructions [PDF]

Leverhulme Trust reporting instructions [external link]

Wellcome trust reporting forms and instructions [external link] 

For FP7 or other funded awards please contact your research awards manager.







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