Global research programme to tackle humanitarian crises

£225 million has been invested across 37 interdisciplinary projects to address challenges in fields such as health, humanitarian crises…


The Research Councils UK (RCUK) and Medical Research Council have announced £225m funding across 37 interdisciplinary projects that aim to address challenges in fields such as health, humanitarian crises, conflict, environment, economy, domestic violence, society and technology.

Leading experts from the UK and across the world, have joined forces with the aim to build upon research knowledge in the UK, and strengthen capacity overseas to help address challenges in the developing countries.

Jo Johnson, Minister for Universities and Science, said: “From healthcare to green energy, the successful projects receiving funding today highlight the strength of the UK’s research base and our leadership in helping developing countries tackle some of the greatest global issues of our time. “At a time when the pace of scientific discovery and innovation is quickening, we are placing science and research at the heart of our industrial strategy to build on our strengths and maintain our status as science powerhouse.”  


Projects led by the MRC include:

Andrew Thompson, RCUK GCRF Champion, said: “The 37 projects announced build research capacity both here in the UK and in developing countries to address systemic development challenges, from African agriculture to sustainable cities, clean oceans, and green energy, to improved healthcare, food security, and gender equality.

“The ambition is to lay the foundations for a sustained and targeted research effort to address the most intractable challenges faced by the world today, climate change, disease and epidemics, food insecurity, rapid urbanisation, and forced displacement and protracted conflict.”

Professor Sir Mark Walport, Chief Executive designate of UK Research and Innovation, said: “In the same way that facing these global challenges requires a multi-national response, finding the solutions to them requires researchers from many disciplines to work together. The Global Challenges Research Fund makes that possible, and means that the UK’s world-leading researchers are able to get on with the job of working with each other and partners across the globe to make the world and society more sustainable.”