Facilitating world-class research
The 2020 submission period for Research Councils (UKRI), Cancer Research (CRUK), British Heart Foundation (BHF), National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) and Wellcome Trust has now closed. The next submission period for these funders will run from 1 February–11 March 2021. See sections below for information on specific funder requirements. Further updates and information will be added to this webpage over the coming months.
Researchfish® is an online reporting system used by funders to collect information on the outcomes and the impact of their research.
Researchers can add their outputs and outcomes throughout the year and must submit their reports during funder collection periods.
Researchfish® is currently used by the Research Councils (UKRI), Cancer Research UK, NIHR, British Heart Foundation, Wellcome Trust (end of grant reporting) and many other public and charitable research funding agencies. For a full list please see the Researchfish® website.
The Research Councils, as well as a number of other funders such as Cancer Research UK, impose sanctions for those who do not complete a full Researchfish® report. This may result in no future payments on existing grants and no further grant applications being accepted if a return is not completed.
The Research Councils publish Researchfish® returns on the Gateway to Research, giving greater exposure to researchers’ work. The outcomes reported are used to shape future funding opportunities, generate case studies and, crucially, to make the case to government for continued funding of the research areas that UKRI covers.
For some funders, including the Research Councils, Researchfish® has replaced the traditional end of award academic reports. For others (eg Parkinson’s UK), it is in addition. Researchers should check with their individual funder or the award conditions if in doubt.
Funders use the data submitted by researchers into Researchfish® to monitor and evaluate the outcomes of the research they fund.
Charitable funders need to demonstrate to their supporters that donations are being effectively spent and the outcomes are used to plan their research strategies.
UKRI use the data to produce analysis reports to lobby the government for continued funding for the scientific areas covered by the Research Councils. UKRI also publish the data on the Gateway to Research, as part of their open access policy.
Note: Ensure that information submitted via Researchfish is not confidential or personal and can be published. If there is sensitive information that you wish to make the Research Council aware of, you should contact your funder directly.
A list of recent reports produced by funders can be found on the Researchfish® website.
After the 2016 collection the Research Councils and MRC produced reports that look at outputs reporting from Oxford compared with the national figure. The reports are based on the Researchfish® question set and look at publication, collaboration, dissemination and a range of other outputs measures. See below for the Researchfish® analysis reports.
When your funder uploads your award details to Researchfish you will be sent an invitation to create an account. If you lose this invitation you can request a new one on the Researchfish® website.
If your award details are incorrect (your award title, email address, funding end date etc) please go to Researchfish online help and click the 'Award details incorrect' icon and they will arrange for your funder to update the information.
No, only a PI can submit the outcomes for their award, but others can be given access to add outcomes on behalf of the PI.
There are two types of access a PI can grant:
To set up a research team click the ‘Manage’ button to the right of the Research Team title and then click ‘Add member’. Enter the member's name and email address and select which access to grant. After clicking ‘Send invitation’ they are then notified by email that they have been invited to join your research team.
Yes, students on UKRI-funded studentships in their third year or above are expected to submit annually for their remainder of the studentship and for three years thereafter. Students are not subject to sanctions.
Research Services have established a support team to help answer any questions that you might have about Researchfish® or research outcomes collections. Please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Symplectic Elements (SE) records grants from funders that use Researchfish® and are led from Oxford, and where there is a match between the funder references in Oracle Financials and Researchfish®. If you have created any links in SE between these grants and publications, these will be uploaded into Researchfish® on 10 January 2020. You should complete the rest of the record in Researchfish® during the collection period.
The submission window for research outputs collection has now closed for 2020. The next submission period for UKRI, CRUK, BHF, NIHR and Wellcome Trust will run from 1 February–11 March 2021. Further updates and information will be added to this webpage over the coming months.
PIs who are in receipt of funding from the Research Councils are expected to submit a comprehensive record of their outputs on Researchfish®. The requirement to report outputs for PIs is the lifetime of an award and a minimum of five years thereafter.
It is also important to note that in most cases awards that started after 30 September 2019 are unlikely to have been uploaded to researchfish® yet, and therefore no submissions can be made against them. These awards normally will be added to the system ahead of the 2020 exercise.
See UKRI's website for further information on reporting research outcomes.
For further information see UKRI's FAQs for PI grants on Researchfish®.
All Research Councils apply sanctions to those who do not submit. UKRI policy is that all current grant monies held by a PI are stopped and a PI is prevented from making further applications until a submission is made.*
For further information see UKRI’s compliance and sanctions policy.
*In light of the ongoing situation regarding coronavirus and its impact on the research and innovation community, UKRI have taken the decision to pause their research outcomes sanctions policy. Any award holder who has not made a required submission (whether in 2020 or relating to a previous years' submission) will not have to fulfil this requirement in order to submit a funding application, and if they are active award holders these awards will not be suspended, while the process is paused. Research outcomes sanctions (including new sanctions for those who did not submit in 2020) are temporarily suspended but will remain in place once we restart the sanctions process at an appropriate time in the future. If applications are received from applicants who have not made a submission, the applicant will be informed that the reporting obligation remains in place, but that the policy is now paused and a submission is not required in order for the proposal to be funded. They will be given guidance on how a submission can be made if they would like to complete it at this time.
Students on UKRI-funded studentships are also expected to submit annually on Researchfish®. All students in their third year or above are expected to submit for the remainder of the studentship and for three years thereafter.
Please note that only studentships started on or before 2 February 2018 will be a part of the 2020 Submission Period.
For further information see UKRI's FAQs for studentship grants on Researchfish®.
Students are not currently subject to sanctions, but the University strongly encourages all students to submit their research outcomes on Researchfish® as this contributes to the Research Council's annual studentship analysis report. The report demonstrates to government the importance and impact of funding postgraduate and early career researchers.
2020 compliance rate for PIs = 99.5% (8 awards were not submitted during the original submission window).
Sanctions were applied to 5 Oxford PIs who had response code 1 awards in the 2020 submission period (Feb-Mar 2020). Please note that UKRI have temporarily suspended sanctions but they will remain in place once UKRI restart the sanctions process at an appropriate time in the future. See sanctions policy information above*. This policy change was announced after the sanctions below were applied.
2020 compliance rate for students = 95.3% submission rate (40 awards were not submitted during the original submission window).
Cancer Research UK require an annual Researchfish® submission from all eligible researchers for the duration of an award and for three years after an award has ended.
CRUK use Researchfish® to capture the outputs and impacts of the research they fund. This information helps CRUK to understand the success of their research strategy, demonstrate the results of their donations to supporters, and help researchers have the greatest impact on cancer patients.
Failure to comply with a valid annual Researchfish® submission will result in CRUK withholding payments to the host institution as detailed in their sanctions policy.
The guidance sheet below will help researchers report their outcomes:
2020 compliance rate for PI awards = 97% submission rate – 85 awards
2020 compliance rate for student awards = 79% submission rate – 37 awards
The British Heart Foundation (BHF) require reporting on Researchfish® as a condition of the grant and submissions are expected from all grants that have been uploaded into Researchfish®, regardless of when the award funding ended.
For help and guidance please see:
2020 compliance rate for PI awards = 99.2% submission rate – 119 awards
NB: no student awards for BHF
For further information on how BHF use this data, please see their latest annual evaluation report.
The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) require feedback from researchers and trainees during an award and for five years after the contract has ended.
The information from researchers and trainees on the outputs, outcomes and impact of their NIHR funded projects is used to:
NIHR have a sanction policy for award holders who do not submit a Researchfish return in accordance with their contractual requirements. A PI may be ineligible for consideration for further NIHR awards and payments on current awards stopped, if a report is not submitted by the deadline.
2020 Compliance rate for PI awards = 97.8% submission rate – 175 awards
2020 Compliance rate for Student awards = 100% submission rate – 13 awards
Wellcome are using Researchfish for their end-of-grant reporting, for most of their Science and Humanities & Social Science grants. You can find out more about the change that was implemented in 2018 here.
Please note that Wellcome Trust have not made any changes to their annual progress reporting. They will continue to ask for this update once a year using Wellcome Trust Grant Tracker. It is only end-of-grant reporting that has changed to use Researchfish.
Researchers will need to use Researchfish if:
For grants not listed above, researchers will continue to use end-of-grant forms.
Wellcome have aligned their submission period with other major research funders, such as UKRI. This helps both Researchfish and Wellcome manage the submission process and so give better support to researchers and research organisations.
The 2020 submission period has now closed. The next submission period will be during February - March 2021.
This means that grantholders whose grants end between 1 October 2020 and 30 September 2021 will need to submit their end-of-grant reports during Researchfish's next submission period (February-March 2021).
Please note: this means some grantholders will be submitting reports a few months before their grant ends. This is so that grantholders use the submission window that is as close as possible to their grant end date. Wellcome are planning to introduce some post-award completion reporting via Researchfish in the near future, so there will be an opportunity for researchers to update reports with any new outcomes at a later date.
If researchers do not submit their Researchfish report, Wellcome will not accept any new grant applications until researchers submit their report.
For queries, not relating to how to use Researchfish, contact the Wellcome Grants Information desk.
More information about end-of-grant reporting can be found on the Wellcome website.
2020 compliance rate for PI awards = 100% submission rate – 46 awards
NB: no student awards for Wellcome Trust
Contact the Oxford Researchfish support team
For technical help with the system contact the Researchfish® support team