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We sponsor research to bring about change in how women and girls are dealt with in the criminal justice system

Hints and tips on applying

Here you will find some hints on how to put a research proposal together and what we expect to see with your application. If you can't find what you are looking for here, or in the FAQs on the 'How to Apply' page, get in touch Contact Us


Reference what you are asserting in your proposal so we can see where your ideas are coming from, and if you think this is a genuine gap in current knowledge, be clear about why: we do not expect you to be an experienced researcher, but we do expect you to show that you have read around your chosen area so you have some knowledge of whether what you are proposing represents a genuine gap in knowledge. It's helpful to include supporting evidence where you can in your proposal. Have a look at what past Griffins fellows have done. Are you proposing something that has been looked at before and if so, will what you are suggesting add to what's been done before or are you proposing something different?
We encourage Fellows to undertake research that they find interesting and important and which allows them to step outside the usual bounds of their work. However, many Fellows find that their research is relevant to their daily work and/or to the development of new practice and/or policy in their field. We advise applicants to discuss their proposed project with their employers as their practical support and encouragement can be invaluable.
We have developed an advisory timetable that you should take into account when developing your research ideas. Whilst you don't have to stick to it, we do strongly encourage you to use it to structure your research proposal:

October to December – preparatory work
• Literature review written
• Research aims and methods revised
• Research materials (e.g. questionnaires) prepared
• Access to the research site/subjects secured
• Ethical permissions obtained
January to June – practical research
• January - Present your work-to-date to the Griffins Society
• Undertake your practical research
July to October – writing up
• Write up your Research Paper (full report and executive summary)
• Present your initial findings and recommendations to the Griffins Society at the board meeting in September 2016
November onwards – disseminating and promoting with the support of the Griffins Society
You only have one year to complete and write up your research so make sure it's manageable and not too big. If you are successful in your application to us, your supervisor who will be appointed to you will help you further refine your ideas and advise on how to ensure you complete the project in the given time, but we do like to see that you're being realistic about what you can achieve in a year.
That is up to you, BUT don't try and cover too many issues - the most successful applicants are usually those who have focused on a specific issue or idea rather than having too broad a topic. Be clear about what exactly the research question is that you are trying to address.
We are happy to offer a limited amount of guidance on how to formulate your thoughts into a research proposal. But, talk to colleagues or other people who might be interested to get their perspective on your ideas - they might have some useful comments to make. We also advise you to discuss your application with your employers where relevant.
If you have an idea for a research project, but are not sure if it is suitable or viable, get in touch with The Griffins Director, and talk it over - we welcome informal enquiries from potential applicants.
Your employer's reference will need to confirm that your employer supports your application for a Fellowship, and is willing to facilitate it. This means that they will allow you to come to London (or Cambridge) for six Fellowships meetings during the year, that they will allow you time to complete your fieldwork, and that if your workplace is going to be your research site, they will allow you to undertake research in your workplace. This does not necessarily mean giving you time off: for example, some Fellows use annual leave, or time off in lieu, for undertaking Fellowships work during the daytime.

Your other reference should be from someone who knows you well and who is able to comment authoritatively on your ability to undertake and write about research, and who is not a relative.
You will get a very good idea of what is expected of you and the standard required, by looking at past Fellowship reports that you will find on the society’s website. You will also see the research subjects that have been covered in previous years – you may find your idea has been covered by a fellow in the past so we would need to understand how your proposal is different and/or how your work would build on past Griffins research fellowships.