Information about membership

The main role of Peer Review College members is to provide reviews of discovery science (responsive mode) research proposals (grants and fellowships) and to participate in discovery science moderating panel meetings. However, members may also be asked to assess proposals to other NERC schemes, or advise on funding policy and process development.

Peer Review College members are active researchers within the environmental science community, who are familiar with the NERC funding assessment process. The majority are academics based at universities however applications are also welcomed from members of the research user community who are active in environmental science research from a policy or applied perspective and have strong interests in NERC science and its use and impact.

What assessing proposals involves

The peer review process generally consists of two stages. For small investments or outline proposals assessment is likely to be by a panel only.

  1. Expert Review: Internationally-recognised experts considered to have expertise relevant to the proposal are invited by NERC to undertake proposal reviews. For responsive mode proposals the majority of experts approached are members of the NERC Peer Review College. Applicants have the opportunity to nominate reviewers, and where possible some of these are also approached to comment. Proposers are given an opportunity to respond to comments provided by reviewers.
  2. Moderating Panel: Discovery science moderating panels are formed from the Peer Review College. Half of the membership of any panel regularly attends as 'Core Panel Members' and there is an identified Chair. Other members are selected from the College according to the particular proposals being considered. For schemes where multiple panels meet (ie Standard Grants and Fellowships), business is divided between Panel Portfolios that consider particular aspects of environmental science.

The role of Peer Review College members

The following documents contain further information about the role of Peer Review College members, the application process and the criteria for membership:

The role of Peer Review College members (PDF, 143KB)

College terms & conditions from May 2016 (PDF, 105KB)

Research Council Reviewer Protocols (PDF, 192KB)

Criteria for membership (PDF, 113KB)


Peer Review College

Julie Goulding
01793 411540