Entrance hall of the ICMSICMS Workshop Applications: overview of the new EPSRC grant

ICMS runs two types of workshops:

  • Our research workshops are typically for 30-80 people for five days and concentrate on new developments across the mathematical sciences and interdisciplinary applications including industry and the public sector. There are two calls for research workshops each year, and the workshops normally take place between one and two years after acceptance.
  • Our strategic workshops are typically 20-50 people for up to five days. These are designed to perform a service to the mathematical sciences community, for example by scoping funding for a call, or by creating new interdisciplinary activity, or taking advantage of temporarily available industrial funding. The lead time is shorter and the timeliness of the application is important. There are four calls for strategic workshops each year and ICMS will consider proposals out of cycle if there is a demonstrable urgency.

We also have funds to foster international collaborations between small groups, industrial collaborations and follow-on activity stimulated by previous research meetings. In all cases decisions are made through the ICMS Programme Committee.

RESEARCH WORKSHOPS for 2019 and onwards

Research workshops involve 30-80 participants with a clear research focus in the mathematical sciences and/or its applications. The academic vision comes from an Organising Committee which we encourage to reflect both an international dimension and due regard for diversity. There are two deadlines each year for the submission of proposals. The next deadline is 1 April 2018. Organisers are advised to discuss their proposal with the Centre Manager and Scientific Director before submission. The main criteria are:

Research Quality

The topic must be of current international importance or likely to be of future international importance.
The invited speakers and participants should be of high calibre (or younger people with high potential) and appropriate to the aims of the meeting.
The aims and objectives of the meeting must be clear and distinctive

Methodology and Resources

The proposed structure (e.g. numbers, length, organisation of presentations, level of exposition) should be that best able to meet the objectives of the proposal.
The Organisers should have the knowledge and experience to manage the scientific aspects of the meeting.
The resources requested should be reasonable

Research Impact

The meeting must have the potential to be both internationally significant and significant for UK workers.
Significance may be judged in terms of a workshop's potential impact beyond its own specific mathematical context or in disciplines outside mathematics.

STRATEGIC WORKSHOPS for 2018 and onwards

A preliminary proposal (one page of A4) is submitted to the Centre Manager at any time. After consultation with Programme Committee, organisers will then be advised whether to move on to a full strategic workshop proposal or whether it would be more appropriate to submit via another route (for example as a research workshop). Strategic workshops may be a bit smaller than research workshops, 20-50 people, and last up to a week.

If it is judged to be appropriate for a strategic workshop a full proposal is submitted to the Centre Manager, submissions will be accepted 15 January, 1 April, 1 July and 1 October.

Preliminary Proposals

All preliminary proposals will be assessed by the Programme Committee. The preliminary proposals should demonstrate both the urgency and the strategic importance of the workshop. Organisers need to explain why their proposal should not be considered within the standard Research Workshop procedures. Strategic importance might include showing one or more of the following:

  • The proposal helps the mathematical sciences community to improve involvement with new interdisciplinary or policy driven initiatives.
  • The proposal enables a broader section of the mathematical sciences community to engage with interdisciplinary or industrial initiatives.
  • The proposal increases the interaction of the mathematical sciences with wider scientific, public sector or industrial problems including funding from outside the EPSRC Mathematics Programme.
  • The proposal creates a mathematical sciences community in a rapidly evolving emerging area of the mathematical sciences and their applications with little connectivity hitherto.

All full proposals will be refereed by national and international experts and their comments assessed by the Programme Committee against the criteria for the proposal to be a strategic workshop and the appropriate criteria of ICMS Research Workshops.


ICMS is keen to promote ideas from early career researchers and encourages ECRs to develop their ideas as an Organising Committee with the offer of mentors from more experienced organisers. Early Career Researcher Workshops will be judged by the same criteria as other Research Workshops or Strategic Workshops as appropriate.


Proposals for RIGs and RPIs and Follow-on funds will be considered in the same cycle as the strategic workshops (submission deadlines: 15 January, 1 April, 1 July and 1 October each year). These involve international groups of researchers (2 to 6 for RIGs and RPIs, it can be more for Follow-on meetings) who wish to organise a 1 – 4 week period of research, normally at the ICMS in Edinburgh. For RIGs the primary aim is to support top-quality international research in the mathematical sciences and its applications and at least one researcher must be based in the UK and one not based in the UK. The ICMS encourages adventurous proposals involving novel groupings of researchers, especially in interdisciplinary areas. RIGs can also be used to develop research grants, particularly where the grant involves funding outside the EPSRC Mathematics Programme. RPIs typically involve a group of researchers from one UK institution and one industrial partner (to avoid IP conflicts) and can be used, for example, to provide evidence of proof-of-concept or to complete reports.


The ICMS funds or hosts several Knowledge Exchange meetings each year. For information contact the ICMS Knowledge Exchange Officer: Dawn Wasley, dawn.wasley@icms.org.uk


If you are planning to organise of a workshop as part of a grant or fellowship, the ICMS is often able to undertake the administration in Edinburgh to make your meeting as effective as possible. Please contact the Centre Manager, Jane Walker, jane.walker@icms.org.uk


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