UKRI GCRF/Newton Fund Agile Response Call to Address COVID-19

Monday, 11 May, 2020

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) has launched a call via the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) and the Newton Fund to support short-term projects addressing and mitigating the health, social, economic, cultural and environmental impacts of the coronavirus/COVID-19 outbreak in Low and Middle Income Countries (LMICs).

While the virus is currently most prevalent in Europe and the US, a growing number of cases are being reported in Africa, the Middle East, and Central, South America and Asia, with potentially serious social, economic and political consequences for these regions. Some of the poorest societies in the world will be the least prepared and most vulnerable to the effects of the virus. Other LMICs may however have experiences, for example from TB/HIV/Ebola, of responding to epidemics from which they and the rest of the world can learn. 

UKRI will support excellent proposals which meet at least one of the following:

  • New research or innovation with a clear pathway to impact on policy or practice that has the potential (within the period of the award) to deliver a significant contribution to the understanding of, response to, and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic in a developing country context. 
  • Supports the manufacture and/or wide scale adoption of an intervention with significant potential for impact in developing countries. 
  • Gathers critical data and resources quickly for future research use.

Researchers holding existing UKRI GCRF grants should in the first instance consider whether they could repurpose that funding to address the objectives of this call. Applicants can apply to switch their existing funding here. Applications for funding that do not, as their primary objective, benefit the welfare of low or middle income countries should apply instead to the UKRI open call for funding to address the impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak.

UK applicants must be based in a UK Research Organisation (RO) eligible to receive funding from UKRI Research Councils. LMIC country Principal Investigators from an organisation that lead or have previously led and held UKRI grants and have undergone Je-S registration and due diligence checks are eligible to be lead applicants for this call.

Principal Investigators (PIs) may only lead on one bid at any one time. They may support others as co-investigator, as long as they have the capacity/bandwidth to do so without detriment to the project they lead. Applicants may be asked to become part of wider consortia or join with already existing efforts.

Projects should last for up to 18 months. Applicants will need to be able to demonstrate that they can start work within four weeks of the funding being confirmed. Funding within this call will be awarded in a manner that fits with Official ODA guidelines. 

There is no specific budget for this call. Research of any scale that can demonstrate it will deliver impact during the lifetime of the project is invited. Research Council funding will be issued at 80% full economic cost (fEC).

Costs for Principal and Co-Investigators from LMICs will be covered at 100% fEC. This applies to Investigators from LMICs identified on the OECD DAC list of ODA recipients.

Interested applicants should complete the proposal application form, available from the UKRI call webpage. Completed forms and supporting documentation should be submitted via email at any time.

Receipt will be acknowledged within two working days. In most circumstances, PIs will have an initial response on the proposal within ten working days. The call has a nominal deadline of 31 December 2020, but applicants may apply at any time.

 

More information about this research funding opportunity and the application process is available on the RESEARCHconnect funding information platform. RESEARCHconnect provides up-to-the minute content, insight and analysis on research funding news and policy. To find out more about how RESEARCHconnect can keep you in the know, and subscription fees, contact us today.

 

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