Research and Innovation Services


Online submission systems

A growing number of funders require applications to be submitted using their online submission systems. To use these systems investigators must have created a registered account.

Investigators should register directly through the funder’s submission system. This process can be lengthy (e.g. three weeks minimum for National Institutes of Health, USA) and therefore should be initiated as early as possible in the proposal development process.

The use of funder submission systems does not replace the need for proposals to be costed, priced and submitted using Worktribe, through which Departmental/Divisional and Award Services processes for review, approval and authorisation are managed.

Some funders use a two-step submission process where your application will be routed to Award Services for final approval, authorisation and submission to the funder.

UCL holds Institutional accounts for such systems for which you may need to enter officer details. These details should not be used for any post-award activity and any queries regarding central account applications should be raised with your Research Support Officer in the first instance.

Funder submission systems


Finance Officer

Contracts Officer


Versus Arthritis

Finance Officer


All the Research Councils (AHRC, BBSRC, ESRC, EPSRC, MRC, NERC and STFC) use the Joint Electronic Submissions (Je-S) system to submit applications.

Investigators must have a full Je-S account in order to be named as a Principle Investigator (PI) or Co-Investigator (Co-I) on an application.

Je-S provide a Handbook to help navigate the system.


The online submission systems used by the following funders can be accessed from these links. Choose Claire Bensusan as Finance Officer:


Grants.gov provides a one-stop electronic portal where grant applicants can find and apply for US federal grant opportunities. Grants.gov allows applicants: to search for funding opportunities; register to receive funding alerts; download application packages and instructions; upload completed applications.

If you are named as a Co-Investigator or Researcher on an application being submitted by another Research Institution within the UK or US, you do not need a Grants.gov account.

All grant applicants are required to register for a Grants.gov account.

Upon receipt of an application, Grants.gov sends an electronic acknowledgement to the applicant and delivers the completed application to the relevant funding agency.

The Grants Learning Center on the Grants.gov website provides detailed help. 

eRA Commons

eRA Commons is used by the NIH and other US Government Agencies and Departments and aligns with Grants.gov (see above).

eRA Commons supports the electronic processing of grant applications from submission through to closure of the grant award.

It is mandatory to have an eRA Commons user account if you are directly applying to any US Government federal funders.

eRA Commons also allows PIs to review the status and details of their grant applications.

Please contact the Research Office to request the creation of an eRA Commons User Account and supply the following information:

  • Full Name
  • Email address

eRA Commons also provide detailed help pages.

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

Principal Investigators are required to download the application form and instructions from Grants.gov to their own computer and complete the application offline.

The final application form and attachments need to be sent to the relevant Award Services team member for review. They will then check the application and return or submit as appropriate.

Grant applicants will first require an eRA Commons User Account as the details of this account are required for the application form.

Please contact the Research Office to request the creation of an eRA Commons User Account and supply the following information:

  • Full Name
  • Email address
  • Date of Birth (mm/dd/yy)

Note: If more than one computer is used to view or edit an application form, each computer must be running the same version of Adobe Reader. Using different versions may result in the application becoming corrupted.

Once submitted to eRA Commons the application will undergo several validation checks. If no errors are found, the applicant and Award Services team will be notified by email. 

If the validation is unsuccessful, the application will be rejected. Information about the rejection and errors is sent by email. All errors must be corrected before the application can be re-submitted.

The validation system will also highlight any warnings (e.g. required documents are not attached or they are not in a pdf. format) on the application. Although warnings will not stop the application being submitted to the funding agency, they may need to be rectified at a later date by correcting the application offline.

The application form must be sent by email to the Award Services team to check before they submit it via Grants.gov (it is then electronically routed to the NIH's eRA Commons).

Important: This is a complex application submission system. It is strongly recommended that you allow plenty of time to complete the application. Contact the relevant Faculty Award Services/Joint Research Office team as early as possible so they can assist you through the process. The application is routed electronically from Grants.gov to the NIH's eRA Commons system for validation. Please note that the NIH application deadline refers to date that the application must reach the NIH and not Grants.gov. It may take up to three days for the application to be submitted through both systems.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

NSPIRES is a web-based system which supports NASA research applications and awards. UCL is a registered organisation within NSPIRES.

Grant applicants are required to create a personal NSPIRES account which is approved via Award Services.

If you have any questions regarding NSPIRES or the registration process, please contact the Research Office.

NSPIRES provide help pages on their website.


ProposalCENTRAL submission system is used by many US Charities and non-profit organisations.

UCL is a registered organisation within ProposalCENTRAL.

Grant applicants using ProposalCENTRAL should contact the Award Services team.

Guidance for using ProposalCENTRAL is provided through their Frequently Asked Questions.