Coronavirus (Covid-19) frequently asked questions

What should I do if I am ill with a COVID-19 related illness?
UKRI is treating sick leave caused by the pandemic differently to UKRI’s normal sick leave policy. In summary, if you are ill for less than one month your stipend will continue as normal and there is no need to report anything to us.  If you are ill for more than 1 month but less than 28 weeks, you are able to apply for an extension to your stipend and you must contact the LISS DTP to inform them of your illness and for advice on next steps.  If you are ill for more than 28 weeks you should interrupt.
What should I do if I am ill, but this is not related to COVID-19?

Please follow the usual process regarding sickness. In summary, if you are ill for less than one month your stipend will continue as normal and there is no need to report anything to us.  If you are ill for more than 1 month but less than 13 weeks, you are able to apply for an extension to your stipend if suitable medical evidence is supplied.  If you are ill for more than 13 weeks you should interrupt.  (See under ‘Managing your Studentship’ at

Can I apply for RTSG, Internships, Overseas Institutional Visits and Overseas Fieldwork?

Applications will be considered for the above under our usual timeline for applications (applications are reviewed on the first working Monday of January, April, July and October each year). Please note that requests may be impacted by institutional and government guidance relating to COVID-19 and approval will be conditional on activities being unaffected by COVID-19. See

Can I apply for funding for equipment and materials to assist with home working?

If there is a clear justification for the purchase of additional equipment or materials to assist you with home working necessitated by COVID-19, you can apply for this using your RTSG.  (See under ‘Managing your Studentship’ at  We will consider applications for computer equipment in excess of the usual limit of £200, but note that UKRI rules do not permit the purchase of high-power computing equipment unless it is not available in their university under normal circumstances.  Applications approved will have to be deducted from your RTSG allowance, since no additional funding is being provided by the ESRC.  We will however look sympathetically on cases where students have already used their full allowance.

Can I book travel?

If you have booked travel or accommodation associated with a study trip supported through LISS DTP funding that has to be cancelled, please make every effort to obtain a refund or recover the expenditure through insurance. If you are unable to recover funding then LISS DTP will still refund your costs, providing that you can show that you have tried to recover the money.

If you are a King’s student, please retain any unspent or refunded money for the time being on the assumption that the trip can be undertaken at a later date.  We will look sympathetically on applications for funding for trips that need to be re-booked but cannot guarantee that this will be possible until we know the extent of the extra money required across the student cohort.

Can I travel overseas?

During the pandemic the position regarding overseas travel is rather complex and changing frequently.  Whether or not you can travel overseas to pursue research is determined by your institution (King’s, Queen Mary or Imperial).  If you seek LISS DTP funding to support an overseas trip, the ESRC rules also apply. The ESRC does not support travel to areas where the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office advises against travel.

If you are considering an overseas research trip, please:

1) Check whether the trip will be permitted by your home institution

2) If travel is permitted by your home institution, check whether travel to the area is permitted by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCO)

3) If both your home institution and the FCO permit travel, then LISS DTP can support you

4) If either your home institution OR the FCO OR both do not permit travel then LISS DTP cannot support your trip

Other Help and Guidance

LISS students should of course follow guidance from their institutions and departments, and also from UK Government sources.  Sources of information and support are available from the following institutional web pages: