UKRI and Zinc launch new support for translational research

A group taking a selfie

UKRI has launched a new programme in partnership with Zinc to help researchers turn ideas into products and services that help people live longer, healthier lives.

The programme, designed to support early career and other researchers with their applications for funding, will open with a series of workshops in January 2021. Researchers will be offered a nine-month package of support provided by Zinc, including:

  • coaching and mentoring from an active network of experts and partner organisations
  • assistance in using design-led, impact-focused approaches to developing their ideas.

It will help researchers with the most innovative ideas, who normally wouldn’t consider this kind of grant, to apply for up to £62,500 per project. UKRI and Zinc are particularly keen to hear from early career researchers and those from arts, humanities or social science backgrounds.

Translational science

The Healthy Ageing Catalyst Awards focus on translational science – turning great ideas and leading research into products and services that achieve one or more of the objectives of the ISCF Healthy Ageing challenge. This year’s winners include:

  • wearable technology – in sock form – that will better identify the early signs of a muscle-wasting condition common in older people
  • a team of healthcare practitioners, architects, designers, building users and academics, who will co-design seven tech-enabled homes, built around the needs of older people, as part of a new, larger housing development
  • in-car monitoring technology to more accurately assess where mild cognitive impairment among older drivers might affect safety, rather than relying wholly on drivers self-reporting issues.

Discovery sessions

UKRI expects to fund up to 60 awards across three funding calls between 2020 and 2022. The calls will be open to UK academics, and a series of ‘Discover the Catalyst Award’ sessions are now open for more information.  For full details of the sessions or our innovative application process please visit the Healthy Ageing Catalyst Awards page.

The awards are also part of the Healthy Longevity Global Competition, established by the U.S. National Academy of Medicine, with partners across the globe.

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