Funding opportunity

Funding opportunity: Applied global health research: stage one

Apply for funding to support applied research that will address global health challenges and inequities.

We will accept applications of all sizes, including large research projects and small to medium-scale applications.

We are looking to develop a portfolio of high-quality global research which will be diverse, promote multidisciplinarity and strengthen global health research capacity.

We encourage applications from project leads based in:

  • low and middle-income countries (LMICs)
  • UK, working in equitable partnership with LMIC researchers

The start application link will be available to select from 9:00am 15 March 2024.

Who can apply

Before applying for funding, check the Eligibility of your organisation.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) has introduced new role types for funding opportunities being run on the new UKRI Funding Service.

For full details, visit Eligibility as an individual.

Who is eligible to apply

To be eligible to apply for this funding opportunity you must:

  • be eligible as an individual
  • be based at either an eligible UK research organisation, or based in a:
    • research organisation in a low or middle-income country (LMIC), with degree-awarding powers recognised by the government in which the organisation is based
    • research-focused institute based in an LMIC either funded by the government of the country in which the organisation is based, or by a not-for-profit organisation
    • research-focused not-for-profit organisation based in an LMIC with dedicated research capacity

Medical Research Council (MRC) particularly encourages applications from:

The board recognises that applied global health research requires the involvement of a diverse range of collaborating organisations in order to affect sustainable change.

Applications involving a not-for-profit organisation based in an LMIC will be eligible to be named project co-lead (international). This can include grass-roots organisations and community groups.

If you do not have a contract of employment for the duration of the proposed project, by submitting an application the research organisation is confirming, if it is successful:

  • contracts will be extended beyond the end date of the project
  • all necessary support for the project and the applicants will be provided, including mentorship and career development for early career researchers

Who is not eligible to apply

You are not eligible to apply if:

  • you are based in a high-income country (does not include UK project leads, who are eligible), or in India, you are not eligible to be project lead, but may be eligible to be project co-lead (international)
  • you are based in China

It is expected that researchers from India and any high-income countries make a significant contribution to their own research costs, including covering their own overheads. Where India is included in a project there must be at least two other LMICs involved in the project.

Equality, diversity and inclusion

We are committed to achieving equality of opportunity for all funding applicants. We encourage applications from a diverse range of researchers.

We support people to work in a way that suits their personal circumstances. This includes:

  • career breaks
  • support for people with caring responsibilities
  • flexible working
  • alternative working patterns

Find out more about equality, diversity and inclusion at UKRI.

What we're looking for


We’re looking to fund research projects that will lead to tangible change in health policy and practice in the near future through practical, impact focused research.

Through our investments in global health research, we aim to:

  • support a portfolio of high quality, high priority, diverse investments to improve health, encouraging:
    • innovation in study design
    • multi-disciplinarity to address global challenges
    • diverse health topics: prioritise local relevance with potential for global impact
  • prioritise equitable partnerships
  • invest in research capacity strengthening
  • promote co-design and co-production with communities, policy-makers and health practitioners

We also welcome cross-sector research combining expertise to meet a global health challenge. For example, an application may include aspects of urban planning, health policy and non-communicable disease (NCD) research. The research question might involve different disciplines and approaches from outside the health sector, but the primary objective must be to improve health.

You can apply for funding to address any health topic of relevance in the context where the research will be conducted. Examples of projects we have funded to date include infections, climate, ageing, NCDs, snakebite and anti-microbial resistance. View the previous AGHRB awards.

Overarching research activities

We aim to support a diverse portfolio of activity and examples of areas in which research may be conducted include but are not limited to:

  • feasibility studies not suitable for other Medical Research Council (MRC) boards and panels
  • late-stage intervention development and testing, which can include global health trials from phase 2b (efficacy) onwards
  • implementation and scale-up research
  • health economic research as part of a broader health solutions focused approach
  • policy research
  • environmental (including climate change), cultural and social approaches within health focused projects
  • impact focused health systems research
  • digital health and AI interventions
  • applied modelling

The MRC partners with the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) to support global health research projects. Some of the projects funded through the Applied Global Health Research Board (AGHRB) in specific strategic areas of mutual interest such as climate and health, women and girls’ reproductive health, early childhood development and epidemic preparedness will be funded under this partnership.

If you are unsure whether your application fits the remit described, please send a one-page summary of your application to

Strengthening research capacity as part of your application

We are committed to strengthening research capacity within low and middle-income countries (LMICs) and the UK. All applicants are required to develop plans to strengthen research capacity within their application, which will be assessed by expert reviewers and inform funding decisions.

We encourage you to start discussing capacity strengthening priorities as early as possible, in consultation with key stakeholders, both within and outside of your project team. For example:

  • researchers
  • laboratory technicians
  • data collectors
  • field workers
  • managers
  • practitioners
  • policymakers
  • research management offices

We take a broad view of where capacity strengthening activities could be targeted, however plans must be directly linked to the proposed project. Activities could target the individual, institutional or contextual level, or span multiple levels, and plans should be proportionate to the scale of the project, with larger projects expected to be more ambitious.

Examples of capacity building include, but are not limited to:

  • building leadership skills amongst early career researchers
  • opportunities for mutual learning across the project team, such as through staff exchanges (for example, the wider health context, engagement with policymakers and research management)
  • building capacity to work collaboratively, across disciplines and across practice-research boundaries (for example, with policymakers, managers, and practitioners in the system)
  • providing mentoring to improve the capacity of less-experienced researchers to generate new knowledge and achieve policy impact
  • team members attending training courses to develop specific expertise or obtain relevant qualifications (excluding master’s and PhDs)
  • opportunities for staff and associated health managers to author or co-author journal and conference papers and participate in national and international conferences
  • building organisational capacity (for example, in management, finance or communications)
  • the formation of LMICs research networks

UK Collaborative on Development Research further resources, tools and guides on strengthening research capacity.

Although new investigator research grants are not available through the AGHRB, we are committed to supporting early career researchers in applied global health. The board will consider each applicant’s career stage and proposed mentorship arrangements during funding discussions.

Areas we will not fund

We will not fund:

  • discovery research or research that includes an applied component that fits within a current MRC remit, programme or priority. This includes early translation and feasibility studies in the remit of the Developmental pathway funding scheme (DPFS) and the Public Health Intervention Development (PHIND) Panel. Applicants wishing to do feasibility studies should carefully consider whether the proposed work fits the remit of these other panels first before submitting to AGHRB
  • observational or prevalence studies
  • studies where the focus is on surveillance, unless the proposed work is applied research into novel methods for surveillance research
  • stand-alone capacity strengthening applications without clear links to high-quality applied research programmes
  • early phase clinical trials (phase 1 and 2a)

Board opportunities

These opportunities represent areas of specific strategic focus that help to inform discussions at funding meetings, but you can submit research applications that focus on any applied global health topic.

Malaria vaccine implementation research strategic opportunity

For this round of the AGRHB, FCDO and MRC have announced ring fenced support for an additional highlight notice on malaria vaccine implementation. There will be no stage one for this highlight. Applications to this opportunity will be via a pre-application and direct to stage two process.

Maternal and neonatal health

The MRC maternal and neonatal health area of investment aims to provide funding for innovative applied research to address the global burden of maternal and neonatal mortality and morbidity.

Early childhood development

The board supports research in early childhood development, which encompasses the physical, socio emotional, cognitive, and motor development of children from birth to eight years of age.

Early childhood development is the outcome of the nurturing care for early childhood development report. This is a range of education, health, nutrition and social protection inputs and environments. Applications in this area will be jointly funded by FCDO as part of a coordinated effort to increase and scale up the evidence base for early childhood development interventions.

Read more about the early childhood development area of investment.

Adolescent health

The adolescent health area of investment aims to fund innovative applied research to improve adolescent health in LMICs.

Implementation science

Maximising impact from research remains a priority for MRC. To ensure that we meet this priority, we are funding research to address the implementation gap and progress interventions towards real-world impact.

We expect this research to ensure that evidence-based health interventions are implemented in an accessible and fair way for the most vulnerable populations.

Read more about the implementation science area of investment.


We will fund projects lasting up to five years, although projects typically last three to four years.

Funding available

The resources you request should be appropriate for the objectives of your application. We will accept applications of all sizes from £150,000 up to approximately £2 million MRC contribution. MRC typically fund 80% of full economic cost, excluding eligible international costs, which are funded as exceptions (100%). We will take value for money into account when assessing applications.

Equitable partnerships, including financial equity, are a key principle of the board. Applications in which the majority of the funding is allocated to the UK, plus any high income countries (or India), will be rejected.

What we will fund

You can request funding for costs such as:

  • a contribution to the salary of the project lead and project co-leads (UK)
  • 100% salary costs for project leads and project co-leads (international), based within an LMIC
  • support for other posts such as research and technical
  • research consumables
  • equipment
  • travel costs
  • data preservation, data sharing and dissemination costs
  • estates and indirect costs

Please note: total costs attributed to international high income countries (those not on the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development Assistance Committee (DAC) list of official development assistance recipients), or India, must not exceed 30% of the full economic cost grant value. There is no cap on eligible funds attributed to international project co-leads from DAC list countries.

What we will not fund

We will not fund:

  • master’s and PhD studentships
  • UK publication costs (publication costs where all the authors are from LMICs can be included)
  • funding to use as a ‘bridge’ between grants

Team project partners

You may include project partners that will support your research project through cash or in-kind contributions, such as:

  • staff time
  • access to equipment
  • sites or facilities
  • the provision of data
  • software or materials

Where there is engagement from individuals based in government agencies, international intergovernmental organisations (for example, the World Health Organization), or other stakeholder organisations (for example, industry collaborators), applicants should include them as a named project partner.

Each project partner must provide a statement of support (not required for stage one).

If your application involves industry partners, they must provide additional information if the team project partner falls within the industry collaboration framework (not required for stage one).

Find out more about subcontractors and dual roles.

Who cannot be included as a team project partner

Any individual included in your application with a core team role cannot also be a project partner.

Any organisation that employs a member of the application core team cannot be a project partner organisation, this is incudes other departments within the same organisation.

If you are collaborating with someone in your organisation, consider including them in the core team as project co-lead, or specialist. They cannot be a project partner.

Supporting skills and talent

We encourage you to follow the principles of the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Researchers and the Technician Commitment.

International collaboration

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is committed in ensuring that effective international collaboration in research and innovation takes place with integrity and within strong ethical frameworks. Trusted Research and Innovation (TR&I) is a UKRI work programme designed to help protect all those working in our thriving and collaborative international sector by enabling partnerships to be as open as possible, and as secure as necessary. Our TR&I Principles set out UKRI’s expectations of organisations funded by UKRI in relation to due diligence for international collaboration.

As such, applicants for UKRI funding may be asked to demonstrate how their proposed projects will comply with our approach and expectation towards TR&I, identifying potential risks and the relevant controls you will put in place to help proportionately reduce these risks.

Find further guidance and information about TR&I, including where applicants can find additional support.

Find out about getting funding for international collaboration.

How to apply

We are running this funding opportunity on the new UKRI Funding Service. You cannot apply on the Joint Electronic Submissions (Je-S) system.

The project lead is responsible for completing the application process on the Funding Service, but we expect all team members and project partners to contribute to the application.

Only the lead research organisation can submit an application to UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).

If you are based in an LMIC research organisation, you can register your organisation by contacting and provide your organisation name, country and city.

If the lead research organisation is an NHS organisation, check it is available in the Funding Service. You are encouraged to check this early as there may be additional steps for the organisation to be set up before you can apply.

Two grant types are available, ‘research’ and ‘partnership’. Before you select ‘Start application’, check you are applying for the appropriate grant type. Applications submitted to the incorrect grant type will be rejected.

To apply

Select ‘Start application’ near the beginning of this Funding finder page.

  1. Confirm you are the project lead.
  2. Sign in or create a Funding Service account. To create an account, select your organisation, verify your email address, and set a password. If your organisation is not listed, email
    Please allow at least 10 working days for your organisation to be added to the Funding Service.
  3. Answer questions directly in the text boxes. You can save your answers and come back to complete them or work offline and return to copy and paste your answers. If we need you to upload a document, follow the upload instructions in the Funding Service. All questions and assessment criteria are listed in the How to apply section on this Funding finder page.
  4. Allow enough time to check your application in ‘read-only’ view before sending to your research office.
  5. Send the completed application to your research office for checking. They will return it to you if it needs editing.
  6. Your research office will submit the completed and checked application to UKRI.

Where indicated, you can also demonstrate elements of your responses in visual form if relevant:

  • use images sparingly and only to convey important information that cannot easily be put into words
  • insert each new image onto a new line
  • provide a descriptive legend for each image immediately underneath it (this counts towards your word limit)
  • files must be smaller than 5MB and in JPEG, JPG, JPE, JFI, JIF, JFIF, PNG, GIF, BMP or WEBP format

Watch our research office webinars about the new Funding Service.

For more guidance on the Funding Service, see:


Applications should be self-contained, and hyperlinks should only be used to provide links directly to reference information. To ensure the information’s integrity is maintained, where possible, persistent identifiers such as digital object identifiers should be used. Assessors are not required to access links to carry out assessment or recommend a funding decision. Applicants should use their discretion when including references and prioritise those most pertinent to the application.

References should be included in the appropriate question section of the application and be easily identifiable by the assessors for example, Smith, Research Paper, 2019.

You must not include links to web resources to extend your application.


Medical Research Council (MRC) must receive your application by 13 June 2024 at 4:00pm UK time.

You will not be able to apply after this time.

Make sure you are aware of and follow any internal institutional deadlines.

Following the submission of your application to the funding opportunity, your application cannot be changed, and applications will not be returned for amendment. If your application does not follow the guidance, it may be rejected.

Personal data

Processing personal data

MRC, as part of UKRI, will need to collect some personal information to manage your Funding Service account and the registration of your funding applications.

We will handle personal data in line with UK data protection legislation and manage it securely. For more information, including how to exercise your rights, read our privacy notice.

Publication of outcomes

MRC, as part of UKRI, will publish the outcomes of this funding opportunity at Applied global health research board – funding decisions.

If your application is successful, we will publish some personal information on the UKRI Gateway to Research.


Word limit: 550

In plain English, provide a summary we can use to identify the most suitable experts to assess your application.

We usually make this summary publicly available on external-facing websites, therefore do not include any confidential or sensitive information. Make it suitable for a variety of readers, for example:

  • opinion-formers
  • policymakers
  • the public
  • the wider research community

Guidance for writing a summary

Succinctly describe your proposed work in terms of:

  • goals to be addressed, please identify a concise and clearly articulated ultimate aim of the research
  • its context
  • the global health challenge the research addresses and its potential impact
  • its aims and objectives
  • its potential applications and benefits

Core team

List the key members of your team and assign them roles from the following:

  • project lead (PL)
  • project co-lead (UK) (PcL)
  • project co-lead (international) (PcL (I))
  • researcher co-lead (RcL)
  • specialist
  • grant manager
  • professional enabling staff
  • research and innovation associate
  • technician
  • visiting researcher

Only list one individual as project lead.

Project leads can be from eligible UK or LMIC research organisations.

We expect all applications to this opportunity to include project co-lead (international), based at LMIC research organisations.

Find out more about UKRI’s core team roles in funding applications.

Application questions


Word limit:10

Provide up to five keywords that describe your application.

What assessors are looking for in your response

Provide up to a maximum of five keywords, for example: maternal health, malaria, implementation science, sub-Saharan Africa.

This is for administrative purposes to help with the initial application processing and will not affect the overall assessment of your application.


Word limit: 1,000

What are you hoping to achieve with your proposed work?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Explain how your proposed work:

  • is of excellent quality and importance within or beyond the field(s) or area(s), and has the potential to advance current understanding, generates new knowledge, thinking or discovery within or beyond the field or area
  • is timely given current trends, context and needs
  • impacts world-leading research, society, the economy or the environment in LMICs
  • is driven by the needs of populations in the LMIC where the research is taking place
  • is generalisable beyond the research setting
  • includes LMIC researchers in the intellectual design and the setting of the
  • research agenda and its ongoing strategic direction
  • ensures that partnerships are equitable

Within the Vision section we also expect you to:

  • consider issues such as burden of disease and priority for the relevant local, regional, and national health services
  • provide evidence that the answer to your research question is needed and wanted by relevant users, policymakers or both
  • identify the evidence-gap that the research will fill
  • describe the changes that might be implemented as a result of the project, and by whom

You may demonstrate elements of your responses in visual form if relevant. Further details are provided in the Funding Service.

References may be included within this section.


Word limit: 1,500

How will you deliver your proposed work?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Explain how you have designed your work so that it:

  • is innovative, effective and appropriate to achieve your objectives
  • is feasible, and comprehensively identifies any risks to delivery and how they will be managed
  • will maximise translation of outputs into outcomes and impacts
  • describes how your, and if applicable your team’s, research environment (in terms of the place, its location, and relevance to the project) will contribute to the success of the work
  • ensures an equitable role for the LMIC researchers in setting the research agenda and strategic direction of the research partnership
  • includes appropriate engagement plans with users, key stakeholders and target populations, and the appropriate communication and knowledge exchange plans
  • if applicable, summarises the previous work and describes how this will be built upon and progressed
  • uses a clear and transparent methodology that will:
    • provide details of the methodological approaches, study design and techniques that will be used. Enough detail must be given to show why the research is likely to be competitive in its field. Particular care should be taken to explain any innovation in the methodology or where you intend to develop new methods
    • briefly describe any pilot or preliminary data you have available to help the reviewers assess the feasibility of the proposed project
    • if applicable, clearly explain the intervention you will be testing, what it consists of and why
    • if applicable, demonstrate that you have carried out a datasets review, and explicitly state why currently available datasets are either appropriate or inadequate for the proposed research

Within the Approach section we also expect you to:

  • outline how co-production with relevant stakeholders, such as end-users, health care workers, policy makers and implementers, is embedded throughout the design and delivery of the project
  • identify the research participants and the setting(s) in which the research will take place. Where a particular setting is proposed which excludes the most vulnerable, for example the school setting, considerations should be made to include vulnerable groups or justify the choice not to
  • fully justify the target population identified application, with clear consideration of the potential for differences according to socioeconomic status, ethnicity, gender, age group or other characteristics
  • explain the proposed timeline including milestones and a diagrammatic workplan, such as a Gantt chart, which can be embedded within the text box

You may demonstrate elements of your responses in visual form if relevant. Further details are provided in the Funding Service.

References may be included within this section.

Research capacity strengthening

Word limit: 250

What are your capacity strengthening plans for the research project?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Explain how you have embedded appropriate capacity building activities within the proposed work. Within this section we expect you to:

  • detail research capacity building needs, opportunities and planned activities
  • explain who will participate in delivering these activities and who will benefit from them

Applicant and team capability to deliver

Word limit: 1,650

Why are you the right individual or team to successfully deliver the proposed work?

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Evidence of how you, and if relevant your team, have:

  • the relevant experience (appropriate to career stage) to deliver the proposed work
  • the right balance of skills and expertise to cover the proposed work
  • the appropriate leadership and management skills to deliver the work and your approach to develop others
  • opportunities for LMIC leadership and management
  • contributed to developing a positive research environment and wider community

You may demonstrate elements of your responses in visual form if relevant. Further details are provided in the Funding Service.

The word count for this section is 1,650 words: 1,150 words to be used for R4RI modules (including references) and, if necessary, a further 500 words for Additions.

Use the Résumé for Research and Innovation (R4RI) format to showcase the range of relevant skills you and, if relevant, your team (project and project co-leads, researchers, technicians, specialists, partners and so on) have and how this will help deliver the proposed work. You can include individuals’ specific achievements but only choose past contributions that best evidence their ability to deliver this work.

Complete this section using the R4RI module headings listed. Use each heading once and include a response for the whole team, see the UKRI guidance on R4RI. You should consider how to balance your answer, and emphasise where appropriate the key skills each team member brings:

  • contributions to the generation of new ideas, tools, methodologies, or knowledge
  • the development of others and maintenance of effective working relationships
  • contributions to the wider research and innovation community
  • contributions to broader research or innovation users and audiences and towards wider societal benefit

Provide any further details relevant to your application. This section is optional and can be up to 500 words. You should not use it to describe additional skills, experiences, or outputs, but you can use it to describe any factors that provide context for the rest of your R4RI (for example, details of career breaks if you wish to disclose them).

Complete this as a narrative. Do not format it like a CV.

UKRI has introduced new role types for funding opportunities being run on the new Funding Service.

For full details, see Eligibility as an individual.

Project partners

Add details about any project partners’ contributions. If there are no project partners, you can indicate this on the Funding Service.

A project partner is a collaborating third party organisation who will have an integral role in the proposed research. This may include direct (cash) or indirect (in-kind) contributions such as expertise, staff time or use of facilities.

The individual named as the project partner contact, cannot be included in your application as a member of the core team, in any core team role.

The project partner organisation cannot be an applicant organisation, where any member of the core team is based. For example, you cannot include a different department based within the applicant organisation as a project partner.

If an individual or organisation outside the core team is responsible for recruitment of people as research participants or providing human tissue for this project, list them as a project partner.

Add the following project partner details:

  • the organisation name (searchable via a drop-down list or enter the organisation’s details manually, as applicable)
  • the project partner contact name and email address
  • the type of contribution (direct or in-direct) and its monetary value

If there are specific circumstances where project partners do require funding for minor costs such as travel and subsistence, these project partner costs should be claimed and justified within the resources and costs section of your application.

If a detail is entered incorrectly and you have saved the entry, remove the specific project partner record and re-add it with the correct information.

For audit purposes, UKRI requires formal collaboration agreements to be put in place if an award is made.

Letters or emails of support are not required from project partners at stage one of the application process (they will be required if you are invited to apply to the full application stage two).

Ethics and responsible research and innovation (RRI)

Word limit: 500

What are the ethical or RRI implications and issues relating to the proposed work? If you do not think that the proposed work raises any ethical or RRI issues, explain why.

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Demonstrate that you have identified and evaluated:

  • the relevant ethical or responsible research and innovation considerations
  • how you will manage these considerations

Consider the MRC guidance on ethics and approvals

You may demonstrate elements of your responses in visual form if relevant. Further details are provided in the Funding Service.

Financial information and equity

Word limit: 500

Provide a high-level indication of how much each research organisation will need.

What the assessors are looking for in your response

Provide a breakdown of the funding requested for each eligible organisation, by copying and pasting the table provided into the text box. You should then add the cost figures relevant to each organisation involved. The table has separate column headings, which will allow you to clearly define the costs you are claiming for each participating organisation, depending on where they are based:

  • LMICs
  • the UK
  • non-UK high income countries (HIC) and India

Important note: a narrative justification of your costs is not required during stage one of the application process.

Further organisation finance guidance
Low and middle-income countries (LMIC)

LMICs are defined as those on the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and Development Assistance Committee (DAC) list.

You must include costs associated with LMIC organisations as exceptions (100%).

Important note: You can claim an additional 20% on top of the total LMIC exception costs for each specific LMIC organisation. These additional funds are a contribution towards indirect costs incurred by the LMIC overseas organisation over the duration of the project (excluding India).

Important note: There is no cap on eligible funds attributed to international project co-leads from DAC list countries, excluding India.

UK based research organisations costs

All UK based costs must comply with the principles of full economic costing (FEC) of applications and claimed accordingly (if the application is successful, we would typically fund 80% of the UK based costs claimed).

High Income Country based international organisation (including India) costs

An HIC international organisation based overseas, including India, will not be on the OECD DAC list of official development assistance recipients and is therefore not defined as an LMIC.

Costs associated with HIC international organisations must be claimed as an exception (100%).

All costs attributed to international HICs, including India, must not exceed 30% of the total FEC costs claimed.

Do not include indirect costs for organisations based within any HIC international organisation, as these are not permitted. Do not claim the 20% extra costs as this is for LMIC based organisations only (excluding India).

Provide a breakdown of the funding request per organisation by completing the table provided in the Funding Service.

Related applications

Word limit: 800

What the assessors are looking for in your response

If not enter ‘N/A’.

If yes, state your previous reference number and explain how this new application is related to the other application.

If the related application was submitted to another funder, you should identify the name of the funder and when you applied.

If this is a resubmission, describe how it differs from the previous application and how feedback on the previous application has been considered and acted on.

How we will assess your application

Assessment process

We will assess your application using the following process.

Peer review

Your outline application will be reviewed by independent board members and MRC’s global health faculty of experts.


We will review the comments and scores for each application. Shortlisted applications will be invited to submit a stage two application.


We aim to complete the stage one assessment process within four months of receiving your application. The funding decision will be made on applications invited to stage two approximately six months from then.


We will give feedback with the outcome of your application.

Principles of assessment

We support the San Francisco declaration on research assessment and recognise the relationship between research assessment and research integrity.

Find out about the UKRI principles of assessment and decision making.

We reserve the right to modify the assessment process as needed.

Assessment areas

The assessment areas we will use are:

  • vision of the project
  • approach of the project
  • capacity strengthening plans of the project
  • capability of the applicant or applicants and the project team to deliver the project
  • ethical and responsible research and innovation considerations of the project
  • value for money and equity of the project

Find details of assessment questions and criteria under the ‘Application questions’ heading in the ‘How to apply’ section.

Contact details

Get help with your application

If you have a question and the answers aren’t provided on this page

IMPORTANT NOTE: The Helpdesk is committed to helping users of the UKRI Funding Service as effectively and as quickly as possible. In order to manage cases at peak volume times, the Helpdesk will triage and prioritise those queries with an imminent opportunity deadline and/or a technical issue. Enquiries raised where information is available on the Funding Finder opportunity page and should be understood early in the application process (for example, regarding eligibility or content/remit of an opportunity) will not constitute a priority case and will be addressed as soon as possible.

Contact Details

For help and advice on costings and writing your proposal please contact your research office in the first instance, allowing sufficient time for your organisation’s submission process.

For questions related to this specific funding opportunity please contact

For general questions related to MRC funding including our funding opportunities and policy email:

Any queries regarding the system or the submission of applications through the Funding Service should be directed to the helpdesk.


Phone: 01793 547490

Our phone lines are open:

  • Monday to Thursday 8:30am to 5:00pm
  • Friday 8:30am to 4:30pm

To help us process queries quicker, we request that users highlight the council and opportunity name in the subject title of their email query, include the application reference number, and refrain from contacting more than one mailbox at a time.

Find information on submitting an application.

Sensitive information

If you or a core team member need to tell us something you wish to remain confidential, email

Include in the subject line: [the funding opportunity title; sensitive information; your Funding Service application number].

Typical examples of confidential information include:

  • individual is unavailable until a certain date (for example due to parental leave)
  • declaration of interest
  • additional information about eligibility to apply that would not be appropriately shared in the ‘Applicant and team capability’ section
  • conflict of interest for UKRI to consider in reviewer or panel participant selection
  • the application is an invited resubmission

For information about how UKRI handles personal data, read UKRI’s privacy notice.

Additional info

Webinar for potential applicants

We held a webinar on 7 December 2023 to provide more information about the funding opportunity and a chance to ask questions.

Watch the webinar (Zoom).

Passcode to access the recording: H6RXwk@i

Research disruption due to COVID-19

We recognise that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused major interruptions and disruptions across our communities. We are committed to ensuring that individual applicants and their wider team, including partners and networks, are not penalised for any disruption to their career, such as:

  • breaks and delays
  • disruptive working patterns and conditions
  • the loss of ongoing work
  • role changes that may have been caused by the pandemic

Reviewers and panel members will be advised to consider the unequal impacts that COVID-19 related disruption might have had on the capability to deliver and career development of those individuals included in the application. They will be asked to consider the capability of the applicant and their wider team to deliver the research they are proposing.

Where disruptions have occurred, you can highlight this within your application if you wish, but there is no requirement to detail the specific circumstances that caused the disruption.

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