Global Challenges Research Fund Networking Grants

  • Phd
  • £25,000
  • 31 December 2020

The Academy of Medical Sciences is delighted to be working with the British Academy, the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Royal Society to offer Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) Networking Grants, available through the GCRF, which is part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA). The GCRF is an initiative that aims to support cutting-edge interdisciplinary research that addresses the global issues faced by developing countries. The GCRF is administered through 17 delivery partners including the Research Councils, the UK National Academies, the UK Space Agency and other funding bodies.

The GCRF Networking Grants will be delivered as part of the Joint Academies Resilient Futures programme. The Academy of Medical Sciences will work collaboratively across the GCRF delivery partners to ensure that these grants provide opportunities for researchers, drawn from a wide spectrum of disciplines and backgrounds, to develop new collaborations, improve interaction between UK researchers and those in developing countries and build communities of researchers that can submit high-quality applications for other GCRF funding calls.


Applicants can be from any discipline, and applications should focus on building a collaborative network. Therefore proposals should be submitted jointly by a lead overseas researcher from a developing country and a lead researcher based in the UK.

To be eligible to apply, both applicants must:

  • Have completed a PhD or have experience at an equivalent level
  • Have proven research experience in their field
  • Hold a permanent position at an eligible institution (in the UK or a DAC-listed country), or a fixed-term contract for the duration of the award

Lead applicants must not be affiliated to a private or commercial organisation. Applications will not be considered if there is more than one UK co-applicant or an overseas applicant not from a DAC-listed country.

This grant forms part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA), which promotes economic development and welfare in developing countries. In order for applications to be eligible for this grant, applicants must clearly show that their proposal’s aims are in-line with those of the ODA. These include strengthening global peace and security, promoting global prosperity and tackling extreme poverty. The delivery partners for this scheme have provided some ODA guidance for applicants, which can be downloaded from the right side of this page.

Projects for Round 6 must start between 31 October 2020 and 31 December 2020, and the funding will last for one year. Full details of eligibility for this scheme are outlined in the guidance, which can be downloaded from the right side of this page. Please read this carefully before submitting an application.

Please contact the grants team if you have any queries via our website.


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The awards provide up to £25,000 over one year to support collaborations between developing countries and the UK and to hold networking events aimed at addressing global challenges.


Round 5 decisions will be announced soon. There will be two further rounds of this grant scheme in 2020, Round 6 (open until 31 March 2020) and Round 7 (opening in Summer 2020).

Applications are invited from researchers affiliated to institutions in DAC-listed countries in collaboration with researchers within eligible UK higher education institutions (HEIs).

You will need to apply for the programme using the Academy's online grant management system: Flexi-Grant. We do not require a hard-copy to be sent by post. You can download a sample of the application form and the guidance notes from the right-hand side of this page, and a word version of the form is available upon request for the purposes of preparing your submission (only when the round is open to applications). Please note that all final submissions must be made through the online portal. To keep up to date with news and round openings please follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

We encourage you to engage with your colleagues, mentors and other senior academics during the development of your application. Please visit our grants advice page for guidance to help you prepare your application, including tips on grant writing and preparing a lay summary.

Your application will be reviewed by Fellows across all of the partnership Academies and experts from developing or Low and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs), and you will not need to attend an interview. We will let you know within five months of the submission deadline whether you have been successful.

Please contact the grants team if you have any queries through our website.

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