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Based in the Research Grants & Contracts (RG&C) Team in Research and Innovation, you will play a key role in supporting the team to ensure a prompt and efficient service in the contracting of research funding.

The main focus of the role is to

  • Provide professional contracting support
  • Negotiate and manage research agreements, primarily those relating to funding awards and collaboration agreements
  • Draft, negotiate and manage further types of research agreements as required

You will provide more general professional advice and support to colleagues within Research and Innovation, the wider University and NHS research communities on contractual issues in support of their research activities.

Key accountabilities

Within broad parameters, under the line management and direction of the Grants & Contracts Managers, and working with academic and professional colleagues at all levels, you will:

  • Effectively advise on, draft, and negotiate research agreements across a broad range of scientific disciplines, including clinical research, ensuring that they protect the academic and commercial interests of the parties we represent
  • Advise on issues relating to research agreements and where appropriate, lead on contract negotiations concerning such agreements on behalf of the University and the NHS
  • Ensure processes and procedures relating to the interaction with researchers across the University concerning the gathering of information required to negotiate research agreements are followed
  • Assist the Grants & Contract Managers in monitoring and evaluating the implications of changes in contracting practices introduced by major funding bodies, taking action as appropriate by adapting internal systems and processes to ensure alignment, and as necessary alerting the Grants & Contracts Managers where implications may be detrimental to the University whilst maintaining effective business relationships
  • Obtain clear and relevant information from researchers and the relevant research support teams on matters relating to the research project, for an assessment to be made of the benefits and risks of entering into specific research agreements
  • Assist the Grants & Contract Managers in the drafting of research agreements and accompanying guidance notes for use within RG&C, and the provision of training and support in relation to the effective and appropriate use of such research agreements
  • Carry out additional activities and responsibilities as deemed appropriate by the Grants & Contract Managers within RG&C

The person

Knowledge, skills and experience

  • A sound working knowledge of research contract issues facing the Higher Education Sector, as well as issues surrounding the wider research environment
  • Relevant experience of contracting practice, within the Higher Education Sector, an NHS or legal setting
  • Experience of working with colleagues at all levels with varying levels of knowledge and expertise
  • A sound working knowledge of Intellectual Property practice and a clear understanding of its importance in an academic setting
  • A sound working knowledge of the legal and regulatory environment pertinent to the transfer of materials and data both nationally and internationally including the Human Tissue Act and associated guidance
  • Administrative skills including excellent standards of accuracy and attention to detail

Attributes and behaviour

  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • Work well under pressure, dealing with a concurrent workload of different issues and respond to shifting priorities
  • Influence others to encourage good practice within an academic context
  • Ability to communicate complex issues with accuracy and clarity
  • Work independently in a complex environment making decisions within defined parameters and with appropriate guidance
  • Manage large portfolios of inter-related agreements
  • Excellent analytical and problem-solving skills
  • Excellent negotiating skills, adoption of pragmatism and where necessary, the ability to resolve conflict
  • Commitment to a high level of customer service


  • A degree or equivalent experience


  • Other relevant professional qualification

Newcastle University is a global University where everyone is treated with dignity and respect. As a University of Sanctuary, we aim to provide a welcoming place of safety for all, offering opportunities to people fleeing violence and persecution.

We are committed to being a fully inclusive university which actively recruits, supports and retains colleagues from all sectors of society. We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all of our employees and the communities they represent. We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from individuals who can complement our existing teams, we believe that success is built on having teams whose backgrounds and experiences reflect the diversity of our university and student population.

At Newcastle University we hold a silver Athena Swan award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality. We also hold a Race Equality Charter Bronze award in recognition of our work towards tackling race inequality in higher education REC. We are a Disability Confident employer and will offer an interview to disabled applicants who meet the essential criteria for the role as part of the offer and interview scheme.

In addition, we are a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe.