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Global Challenges Research Fund

by Alison Harvey last modified Jun 02, 2017 01:56 PM

Latest News

Second GCRF Collective Fund call will be launched in late summer 2017

Research Councils UK are pleased to announce that a second GCRF Collective Fund call will be launched in late summer 2017. This call will establish a cohort of large-scale Global Challenges Interdisciplinary Research Hubs, which will be expected to deliver integrated and innovative international research programmes meeting the aims of Official Development Assistance (ODA).

These flagship GCRF investments will bring together UK researchers and researchers from DAC list countries to work in collaboration to more effectively understand and address key development challenges both across and between the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Due to the complex nature of these development challenges, Hubs will be expected to incorporate new collaborations and partnerships in order to redefine how we approach development challenges in innovative, transformative and inter-disciplinary ways.

The purpose of this pre-announcement is to allow potential applicants to begin the process of identifying appropriate collaborators and project partners with a view to assembling interdisciplinary teams. A full call document will be released in due course outlining further details and how to apply.

There will be a multi-stage application process; any Research Organisation on the RCUK IRO list will be eligible to apply as PI to the call; additional eligibility will be outlined in the call documentation when the call is formally open for applications. Overseas research organisations are not eligible to apply as the lead organisation to the call, but will be expected to play a very significant role in the development of and leadership within the Hubs.


The Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) is a £1.5 billion fund to support cutting-edge research that addresses the challenges faced by developing countries through:
  • challenge-led disciplinary and interdisciplinary research strengthening capacity for research and innovation within both the UK and developing countries
  • providing an agile response to emergencies where there is an urgent research need.

GCRF is administered through delivery partners including the Research Councils and national academies.

GCRF forms part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment, which is monitored by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). ODA-funded activity focuses on outcomes that promote the long-term sustainable growth of countries on the OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) list. GCRF funding will be awarded in a manner that fits with Official ODA guidelines.


 Current GCRF Open Calls

Diagnostics, prosthetics and orthotics to tackle health challenges in developing countries  EPSRC  15 May 2017 
MRC/AHRC GCRF Global Public Health; Partnership Awards pre-call announcement  MRC  8 June 2017 
Research Networking Highlight Notice for International Development  AHRC  25 April 2017 

The first round of ESRC GCRF calls has now been commissioned. Some analysis on the successful grants will be available soon. We are currently scoping and developing the next phase of ESRC GCRF activity and hope to announce new funding calls by late spring.


UCCRI/CCI Ideas Forum

Following our GCRF workshop with CCI partners, there will be an Ideas Forum Thursday 6th April, 10am to 11.30am (coffee and biscuits available).  This will be in the David Attenborough Building. We ask people to come along with specific ideas in mind that they are comfortable to put on the table and enable others to brainstorm and feed into.  You can also come along to listen but it is hoped this will be more of an interactive process.

Register Here