This section includes information on:

Access and system support

Overview of InfoEd

InfoEd has two modules:

Proposal Development is a browser-based module which is used to develop, cost, price and internally approve all externally funded research applications. Its primary users are academics, researchers, administrative staff in departments/divisions, heads of departments and Research Services.

The Proposal Tracking module is used by Research Services only and holds pre- and post-award information to help the management of grants and awards and all subsequent extensions and supplements. The information entered into InfoEd is also used for management reporting purposes.

Information relevant to an external funding application is entered directly into InfoEd to create a unique proposal record. Some fields are automatically populated with information from other College databases, such as the HR system. The in-built costing tool calculates the Full Economic Cost of each individual project based on the data entered.

Accessing InfoEd

Access to InfoEd is restricted to Imperial College staff and is not open to external co-applicants. Only authorised staff will be given access to the costing tool. The role of the user will determine which person is authorised to request access.

Requests for access should be sent to infoed.admin@imperial.ac.uk

Existing users should access the logon screen for InfoEd Proposal Development

 
Type of UserWho can request access?
 Research Services  User to request access - no further approval required
 Head of department/division (HoD)  User to request access - no further approval required
 Departmental or divisional administrator/operations manager (DA/DOM)  HoD (or previous DA/DOM) to request access
 Department/division administration support staff  DA/DOM to request access
 Academics, researchers  DA/DOM to request access
 

Access to InfoEd is essentially role-based. After submission for internal approval, only Research Services can continue to edit a proposal. Other roles will have view access only.

A user who creates a proposal on behalf of the PI must be added as a Co-I on the proposal in order to retain access to the proposal once it has been created. If the person creating the proposal is not actually a Co-I, they must be deleted as a Co-I before submission. Alternatively, the PI can delegate access to all their proposals to a specific user (see InfoEd user guide InfoEd User Guide Delegation Of Access Rights [pdf])

 
Type of userInfoEd roleAccess rights
 Research Services  Research Administrator
 View and edit proposals and awards for all faculties
 Faculty (Faculty Operating Officers; Faculty Finance Officers)  Department Administrator II (DA II)  View and edit all proposals for their Faculty
 Heads of department/division
 Department Head  View and edit all proposals for their department/division, plus Approval notification email re: internal approval routing
 Department/division administrators  Department Administrator I (DA I)  View and edit all proposals for their department/division, plus information only email re: internal approval routing
 Department/division administrators  Department Adminstrator II (DA II)  View and edit all proposals for their department/division - but no email notifications re: internal approval routing
 Academics, researchers  Investigator  View and edit their own proposals
 Adminstrative support staff  Clerical  View and edit all sections of a proposal they are named on, except the costing tool
 
Summary of the table's contents

 

Accessing InfoEd - Web Browsers

PC Users – Only Internet Explorer should be used as the web browser. This will allow access to full InfoEd functionality.

Mac Users - Only Firefox (not Safari or Internet Explorer) should be used as the web browser. Using Safari or Internet Explorer for Macs may cause problems because Apple do not support this.

Forgotten InfoEd password

If you have forgotten your InfoEd password, email infoed.admin@imperial.ac.uk

Browser settings

When returning to an InfoEd web page, the internet web browser should check to see whether the page has changed since it was last viewed. If the page has changed, the browser is required to display the new page. This will ensure that the browser displays pages that are current, i.e. they have been up dated with the latest information, and does not return to an old page previously saved on the local hard drive or cached in the memory, which is especially important for calculations.

To check that Microsoft's Internet Explorer has been set to do this, follow these steps before logging on:

  • Open Internet Explorer by double clicking the desktop icon
  • From the Tools menu, select Internet Options
  • On the General tab, click Setting and select 'Every Time I Visit The Page'
  • Click OK twice to exit the dialogue boxes

Remote access (VPN)

To access InfoEd at locations away from College, a Virtual Private Network account must be arranged with ICT.

System support

Operational support

In the first instance, users should contact the local administration team in their department/division for help and support.

If a local administrative contact is unavailable, Faculty Research Services teams can provide operational support.

System-related support

The Research Office provides first-line support for InfoEd, including queries relating to:

  • Access and security
  • Password problems
  • Approval routing
  • Delegation of edit and/or view access in an emergency
  • Reporting
  • Alerts
  • Deletion of proposals

For assistance, contact infoed.admin@imperial.ac.uk

This email address is monitored from 9.00 to 17.00, Monday to Friday (excluding College holidays).

System faults can be reported to the ICT Service Desk:
020 7594 9000
service.desk@imperial.ac.uk

User guides and additional information

Creating a new proposal

Research projects are costed on InfoEd using Full Economic Costing (FEC) methodology for all funders. The costing tool calculates the FEC of each individual project based on the data entered. Before using InfoEd, it is important to understand the basic principles of FEC and pricing. This will facilitate the development of a research proposal and inform decision making.

InfoEd Proposal Development consists of a series of menu screens which take you from creation of the proposal through to final internal approval.

The main steps are:

  • create a proposal record
  • develop the Full Economic Cost (FEC)
  • develop the Price
  • run and check reports (e.g. staff cost details; FEC Summary)
  • add investigator credit
  • add keywords
  • attach supporting documents (e.g. case for support; justification of resources)
  • submit for Faculty approval (Head of Dept/Division; Research Services)

All screens must be completed before a proposal can be submitted for internal approval on InfoEd.

User guides (includes 'How do I?' interactive guide)

User guides are available for each menu screen and other important functions:

Guides
Menu screens
Staff costing information
Subprojects (collaborative projects)
Review and approve a proposal
Extensions and supplements
Copying from an existing proposal
System navigation and settings

Translating cost into price

The Full Economic Cost (FEC) represents the cost of all resources necessary to undertake an individual project. The price represents what the funder is willing to pay and what the College is willing to accept, i.e. the price can be equal to, lower or higher than the FEC.

The price (recovery) functionality on InfoEd applies a pricing rule that translates the cost of a proposal into a price using a set of predetermined percentages and indexation rates for each budget category. The initial price which is calculated can be compared to the FEC, i.e. total percentage recovered. The price can be changed further once a final pricing decision has been reached in accordance with the College’s pricing policy.

Research Council applications require project costs to be submitted at 100% FEC excluding indexation (even though Research Councils will only meet 80% of the FEC with exceptions). InfoEd generates several reports that provide costing information in a format suitable for completing most Research Council proposals (subject to the terms and conditions of specific funding schemes). Refer to the above user guides for 'FEC summary and RC summary' and 'Staff Cost Detail Reports'.

The FEC of a project is based on the College's indexation rates, and the price charged to a funder should correspond with this. If a funder specifies their own rate of inflation (or it is unclear what rate should be used on an application), contact the Faculty Research Services team.

Research Council applications are made using an electronic submission system:

Fellowship applications by external applicants

As external applicants do not have access to InfoEd, a separate form should be completed by all external fellowship applicants. This allows minimum information to be captured and entered onto InfoEd by the department/division on the external fellow’s behalf, enabling a costing to be calculated.

For non-Imperial applicants, the proposed supervisor should be named as the Principal Investigator on InfoEd.

Fellowship Form [Word]

Internal approval process

Internal approval must first be given on InfoEd before a research proposal can be submitted to an external funder, regardless of the submission method used (e.g. electronic system; paper application form). Once a proposal has been submitted for internal approval on InfoEd, the applicant can track its progress through the online approval route in real time. Refer to the above user guide for 'Submit for Internal Approval'.

In general, the approval routing will be a three-step process:

  • Departmental/Divisional Administrator (DA) – review or approve
  • Head of Department/Division (HoD) – approve
  • Research Services Manager (RSM) – final approval on behalf of Imperial (institutional authority)

For internal multi-departmental collaborations, the HoD for each co-investigator must also review and approve the proposal.

Approval and authorisation to submit a proposal to a funder must undergo a two stage process - Faculty Approval followed by College Authorisation. This is governed by College policies and frameworks.

Further information on approvals, authorisation and submission

FEC costing tool – security code of practice

The use of data held in the College's information systems is governed by the College's Data Protection Policy and associated Codes of Practice, with its notification under the Data Protection Act 1998 and the College's Information Systems Security Policy.

Staff should be aware that personal data may be used for costing bona fide research funding applications. Only users who have been assigned the appropriate systems access will be able to cost staff for such purposes and an audit trail will be in place to monitor usage of this tool.

Improper use of the costing tool is contrary to College policy, and could be a matter for disciplinary action.

Training

Training

A training course for beginners on the fundamentals of Full Economic Costing (FEC) and InfoEd proposal development is available.

Course dates and booking instructions are available from the Learning and Development Centre.