Funding opportunity

Funding opportunity: Preparing for future clean air challenges: interdisciplinary research and innovation consortia


Closing date (Notification of Intent): 16:00 on 3 September 2020

Closing date (Outline Proposals): 16:00 on 15 October 2020

Closing date (Full Proposals – INVITE ONLY): 16:00 on 25 February 2021

UKRI invites proposals for interdisciplinary research and innovation consortia under the second wave of the Strategic Priorities Fund (SPF) Clean Air Programme.

The aim of the second wave of SPF Clean Air Programme funding is to equip the UK to proactively tackle new and emerging air quality challenges related to changing emissions and exposure patterns and health impacts on groups of people most at risk.

With this in mind, the purpose of this call is to fund solution focussed, interdisciplinary consortia in the area of the indoor/outdoor air quality interface which will deliver new knowledge that:

  • provides critical foresight on emerging air pollution challenges and associated health risks and impacts
  • enables an increased understanding and quantification of human behavioural change and practices in order to develop and assess interventions, that limit harmful exposure to mitigate negative health impacts individuals most at risk.

It is anticipated that consortia will translate this new knowledge and innovation to support and inform government policy to reduce emissions, improve public health, influence behaviour and develop infrastructure.

There are five main objectives that this call seeks to address:

  1. Understanding and characterising indoor air pollution and its influence on outdoor air quality.
  2. Understanding the toxicology and health effects of future exposure and emission scenarios.
  3. Understanding airborne biological materials and their impacts on health.
  4. Influencing behaviour and practices related to emissions and exposures.
  5. Interventions in the built environment.

Across the funded portfolio of consortia, the funders anticipate elements of all these five objectives will be addressed but individual consortia do not need to address all of the objectives within their project.

This call will support three to four large interdisciplinary consortia to deliver a step-change in knowledge and understanding of future air quality challenges and health risks across the indoor and outdoor interface and develop solutions; to achieve clean air in order to improve and protect health.

Call details

Up to £10 million is available to fund approximately three to four consortia at £ 2 to 3.3 million (80% full economic cost) each. Projects should start on 1 September 2021 and run for four years.

Please see the Announcement of Opportunity below for full details:

Applicants must submit a Notification of Intent using the online registration form by 16:00 on 3 September 2020 for their outline bid to be considered. The final closing date for outline proposals is 16:00 on 15 October 2020.

Only full proposals which have been invited by the funders following the outline stage will be accepted. The final closing date for full proposals is 16:00 25 February 2021. Applicants should be informed by December 2020 if they are to proceed to the full proposal stage.

Additional support to applicants

UKRI have recorded a presentation which provides more information on the Announcement of Opportunity including the background, scope, and application process for this funding call. This recording, along with the accompanying slides and frequently asked questions document, can be found below:

To facilitate collaboration and ensure prospective consortia have the expertise needed, we will be providing a mechanism for applicants to share expertise offered or wanted. Applicants can provide these details via an online brokering form throughout application process, with the list of expertise offered or needed displayed on this web page.

Further information and contact

For further details on this funding call, please contact Boudewijn Dominicus:

For further details on the SPF Clean Air Programme, please visit the UK Clean Air website

For more details on the Strategic Priorities Fund, please visit the: UKRI SPF website

An equality impact assessment (PDF, 185KB) has been carried out to ensure this funding call, including all associated events and communications, is fair and does not present barriers to participation.

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