Fund for International Collaboration - FIC
The Fund for International Collaboration (FIC) aims to enhance the UK’s excellence in research and innovation through global engagement, forging new bilateral and multilateral research and innovation programmes with global partners.
The Fund for International Collaboration was announced in the Industrial Strategy White Paper in November 2017 as a “£110 million fund for International Collaborations to enhance the UK’s excellence in research and innovation through global and strategic engagement.” The first round of FIC calls were then announced in January 2019.
Alongside other new cross-UKRI funds including the Strategic Priorities Fund, the FIC forms part of a package of UKRI measures to maintain the UK’s global R&D leadership and thereby deliver against the ambitions of the Industrial Strategy.
FIC supports UKRI’s aims of promoting the UK as a world-class destination to generate and access research and innovation enabling UK researchers and innovators to collaborate with the best international partners. It will develop existing and create new collaborative research and innovation programmes that target countries with high performing research and innovation sectors to engage in joint-funded bilateral or multilateral agreements, which will deliver new knowledge, societal and economic impact, to the mutual benefit of the UK and partner countries. FIC aims to build the capacity and capability of UK-based institutions, supporting BEIS and wider Government objectives, enabling the UK to strengthen its collective voice in research and innovation policy, stimulating, consolidating and growing its international collaborative activity.
The Fund for International Collaboration pursues its aims as a mechanism to support the delivery of the BEIS-led International Research and Innovation Strategy; as a facilitator, enabling UKRI to positively respond to partner countries expressing a strong interest in strengthening and deepening their research and innovation partnerships with the UK; as a catalyst for collaborations which deliver higher-quality research, enhance the UK’s reputation and leadership, and attract new investment.
As the FIC focuses on enhancing the UK’s bilateral and multilateral partnerships with global R&D leaders, UKRI has identified key partner countries, in consultation with BEIS, as part of an evolving framework for international investment. Partner countries under the FIC include the USA, Canada, Japan, Australia, Israel, South Korea, Singapore, China and India. The first round of calls announced involve collaborations with 17 lead countries.
FIC programmes are being delivered by UKRI’s constituent Councils. The fund as a whole is managed centrally by the UKRI International team.