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F.A.Q. about Koç University Seed Research Fund applications

A Frequently Asked Questions list about Koç University Seed Research Fund (KU-SRF) applications is prepared by Şebnem Doğan (sebnemdogan@ku.edu.tr) and Emrah Göker (egoker@ku.edu.tr), based on queries from KU academics.

This list may be updated until the application deadline (31 march 2014, 17:00) at this RPGTTD link: http://tto.ku.edu.tr/tr/node/177

For details about KU-SRF and application documents, please consult this link: http://tto.ku.edu.tr/en/node/153 

KU-SRF FAQ:

1. Can we have include researchers from other universities in our Koç University Seed Research Fund (KU-SRF) proposal?
PIs cannot be from another university. Since this is a program funding small-scale projects, the preference is to have an all-KU team. However, if your research design dictates the invitation of an academic from another university, if your collaborator cannot be from KU, that’s fine as long as you justify this in your proposal.
2. I do not have a PhD degree yet, am I eligible?
No. Even if you are teaching a course, you are not eligible.
 
3. Under what conditions can I ask for a travel budget? Are travel expenses eligible for cooperation with institutions abroad?
Travels can be budgeted (unless they are for activities like congresses, etc.) if you justify them as part of your seed research. In case cooperation with an institution abroad has the potential to expand your seed research into a long term research program, travels may be eligible. 
  
4. Do you have quotas for colleges? How many projects will be supported?
There are no quotas. The number of supported projects will primarily depend on the quality and ranking of applications.
5. Can I purchase equipment with all of my first year budget?
Although this is not a program for research infrastructure development, the answer is yes, depending on how you justify the expenditure.  
6. Can I spend all of my two-year budget (max. 50.000 TL) on equipment, at the very beginning of my project?
This may draw criticism from the panel, since KU-RSF is not aiming for research infrastructure development. The panel may question why other funding sources were not pursued for purchasing that equipment.
7. [cont. From 6] Is it to my disadvantage that I have not applied to external funders for that equipment before? 
In case you convince that your seed project proposal is innovative and can be the basis for a long-term project, it is not a disadvantage.  
8. Can I write my proposal in Turkish?
Yes.
9. Will there be a transfer to my accumulating research fund account?
Since PIs do not get additional income from KU-RSF, the answer is no. 
10. Can I begin my approved project any time after June 2014?
Yes. We will prepare your agreement according to the starting date you prefer.
11. Can I pay wages for technicians, manual workers and other types of non-researcher/non-academic staff out of my budget?
As long as you justify the recruitment within your research design, yes. Such personnel have to become KU employees and you have to budget their wages in consultation with HR. 
12. Can I subcontract out of my budget?
Yes, the rule of thumb is the same as in TÜBİTAK applications: Justify the procurement well and make sure that you do not give the impression to the panel that the subcontractor is doing the scientific work you are expected to do.

1. Can we include researchers from other universities in our Koç University Seed Research Fund (KU-SRF) proposal?

PIs cannot be from another university. Since this is a program funding small-scale projects, the preference is to have an all-KU team. However, if your research design dictates the invitation of an academic from another university, if your collaborator cannot be from KU, that’s fine as long as you justify this in your proposal.

2. I do not have a PhD degree yet, am I eligible?

No. Even if you are teaching a course, you are not eligible. 

3. Under what conditions can I ask for a travel budget? Are travel expenses eligible for cooperation with institutions abroad?

Travels can be budgeted (unless they are for activities like congresses, etc.) if you justify them as part of your seed research. In case cooperation with an institution abroad has the potential to expand your seed research into a long term research program, travels may be eligible.   

4. Do you have quotas for colleges? How many projects will be supported?

There are no quotas. The number of supported projects will primarily depend on the quality and ranking of applications.

5. Can I purchase equipment with my entire first year budget?

Although this is not a program for research infrastructure development, the answer is yes, depending on how you justify the expenditure.  

6. Can I spend my entire two-year budget (max. 50.000 TL) on equipment, at the very beginning of my project?

This may draw criticism from the panel, since KU-RSF is not aiming for research infrastructure development. The panel may question why other funding sources were not pursued for purchasing that equipment.

7. [cont. From 6] Is it to my disadvantage that I have not applied to external funders for that equipment before? 

In case you convince the panel that your seed project proposal is innovative and can be the basis for a long-term project, it is not a disadvantage.

8. Can I write my proposal in Turkish?

Yes.

9. Will there be a transfer to my accumulating research fund account?

Since PIs do not get additional income from KU-RSF, the answer is no. 

10. Can I begin my approved project any time after June 2014?

Yes. We will prepare your agreement according to the starting date you prefer.

11. Can I pay wages for technicians, manual workers and other types of non-researcher/non-academic staff out of my budget?

As long as you justify the recruitment within your research design, yes. Such personnel have to become KU employees and you have to budget their wages in consultation with HR. 

12. Can I subcontract out of my budget?

Yes, the rule of thumb is the same as in TÜBİTAK applications: Justify the procurement well and make sure that you do not give the impression to the panel that the subcontractor is doing the scientific work you are expected to do.