ESRC SDAI Applicant Survey

Closed 7 Jun 2024

Opened 2 May 2024


This survey is open to anyone who has applied as a Principal Investigator on at least one proposal submitted to the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)’s ‘Secondary Data Analysis Initiative (SDAI)’ between 1 January 2016 and 31 October 2022. We are not asking about any other ESRC funding opportunities. Please only respond if you have specifically applied to the SDAI open call scheme within this timeframe.

The survey should take approximately 15 minutes to complete.

ESRC’s SDAI scheme issues grants to support research that exploits existing social and economic data resources for comparative analysis. It also aims to develop research capacity and skills in using large and complex secondary data. Proposals can draw from the wider sciences, but the social sciences must represent more than 50% of the research focus and effort.

There have been two iterations of the SDAI open call scheme since 2016, with different requirements:

  • SDAI Open Call (from 2016 – 2018): Applicants could submit applications for up to £200,000 at 100% Full Economic Cost, for a period of 18 months. Applications were restricted to a predefined list of ESRC-funded data resources and required inclusion of at least one early career researcher as either Principal or Co-Investigator.
  • SDAI Open Call (from 2018 – 2022): Applicants could submit applications for up to £300,000 at 100% Full Economic Cost, for a period of 24 months. Applications were not limited to ESRC data resources and applications from early career researchers were encouraged, but not a requirement.

We are interested in the views of all applicants to either iteration of this scheme, whether or not their proposal was funded. This includes cases where an applicant has submitted more than one relevant proposal to the scheme.

How UK Research and Innovation will use your personal data

The personal data you give us will be used to help us understand the functioning of ESRC’s SDAI scheme.

We are not asking for or gathering your personal details, including contact information. We will not use the information you give in your response to identify you or link your response to specific applications. Response data will be deleted once analysis of it has been completed.

Your personal data will be handled in line with UK data protection legislation and managed securely. If you would like to know more, including how to exercise your rights, please see our privacy notice.

If you have any questions, or if you do not wish to be contacted again for this purpose, please email


  • Research Community


  • Research and Innovation Sector Engagement