Eligibility and Requirements

Full details of the eligibility criteria for both individual applicants and research organisations can be found in Section C of the NERC Research Grants Handbook.

Special Considerations

In common with BAS research guidelines and procedures, investigators wishing to carry out fieldwork in the Antarctic are required to observe the following:

  • The research must comply with the provisions of the Antarctic Act (1994) regulations. Principal Investigators will be responsible for satisfying the requirements of the associated permitting regime.
  • The research must satisfy UK ethical standards relating to research. Where deemed appropriate, proposals will be assessed by an Ethics Review Committee, and will only be accepted if approved by that Committee.  
  • As the timing of fieldwork in Antarctica is weather dependent, researchers will need to commit to flexibility in their planning, and in the availability of those who will be conducting the fieldwork.
  • Researchers funded by NERC will only be allowed access to BAS research stations and facilities after they have satisfactorily completed the pre-deployment training prescribed by BAS.
  • Individuals involved in fieldwork will have to undergo medical fitness screening.
  • Researchers must agree to conform to the command structure on BAS research stations and ships.
  • Researchers must comply with UK legislation regarding Health and Safety, except where this is impractical or impossible, in which case BAS best practice must be followed.
  • Over-wintering will be allowed, although it will be necessary to verify that personalities are suitable for wintering.
  • All applicants should note that there is no domestic help on BAS stations. All visitors are therefore required to assist with general duties.
  • All equipment must be shown to satisfy safety standards prior to shipping. Novel instrumentation must be tried and tested in the UK prior to shipping. Responsibility for the maintenance of equipment lies with the researcher.
  • All infrastructure and logistic costs outside of the BAS current infrastructure will be charged for, e.g. modifications to BAS aircraft or ships; also any incurred air-freight costs.
  • Research should acknowledge NERC funding and BAS logistic support in any publications resulting from the research.

For advice on what to consider when applying to carry out fieldwork in the Arctic, please visit the Arctic Office website.