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Hunting or gathering; feasting or starving? Researcher funding acquisition practices in differing funding landscapes

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Previous studies of research funding instruments have been oriented around policymaker perspectives. This has foregrounded attention to single grants held by researchers, and insufficient treatment of broader contexts. Research funding may be better understood as embedded in complex social settings. Researchers perceive field-specific landscapes and sources of funding, to which they respond with observable, likely predictable funding acquisition strategies. Their strategic action possibilities can be expressed as a causal model, interrelating funding landscape characteristics, perception shaping frames, and their research and funding portfolios, required funding, and past funding acquisition actions and successes. We provide a proof-of-principle for this model via a secondary analysis of two empirical studies, in which researchers’ career stages, research fields and funding landscapes vary. We see funding landscapes do not linearly translate into funding acquisition practices. Some early career researchers perceive urgency in their individual research programmes ‘starving’ if they do not go ‘hunting’ for any source, sometimes adapting their content. Some advanced researchers are ‘feasting’ from ‘gathering’ across multiple sources, already appropriate for their research, without major adaptation. Overall, this proof-of-principle suggests the model is fruitful for future studies.
Original languageEnglish
Publication yearJun 2022
Number of pages22
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022
EventBuilding capacity and promoting resilience in research systems - Sweden IVA Conference Centre, Stockholm, Sweden
Duration: 16 Jun 202217 Jun 2022


ConferenceBuilding capacity and promoting resilience in research systems
LocationSweden IVA Conference Centre
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