Current funding opportunities

Artificial Intelligence in Healthcare Award 2020 (Phases 1-3 and Phase 4)
National Institute for Health Research

04 March 2020, 13:00
No limit
No limit

The Artificial Intelligence Health and Care Award supports innovators and technologies across the spectrum of development of artificial intelligence (AI) technology, from concept through to initial NHS adoption and testing of the technology within clinical pathways.

Phase 1 – Feasibility

Phase 2 – Development & Clinical Evaluation

Phase 3 – Real World Testing

Phase 4 – Initial Health System Adoption

Phases 1-3

Phases 1-3 of the AI Award aim to create a pipeline of products, interventions and services which are ready for wider testing and will be delivered through the well-established and robust mechanisms underpinning the i4i and SBRI Healthcare programmes, with an indicative budget of £2-7m in the first year. This early stage pipeline will be managed by the NIHR Invention for Innovation and Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) Healthcare Programme Management Office, in close collaboration with the Accelerated Access Collaborative Delivery Team.

Phases 1-3 are 2 stage processes. For Stage 1, applicants should complete a brief expression of interest form. A template of this form can be found on the right hand side, but applications must be completed and submitted through the Research Management System.

Phase 4

Through the Phase 4 AI Award the Accelerated Access Collaborative Delivery Team will facilitate initial systems adoption of the AI technologies into the NHS and/or social care setting, with an indicative Phase 4 budget of £5-10m in the first year.

Phase 4 is a single stage processes. A template of the application form can be found on the right hand side, but applications must be completed and submitted through the Research Management System.

NIHR Research for Patient Benefit Programme (Competition 41)
National Institute for Health Research

18 March 2020, 13:00
No limit
No limit

Applications are invited for research proposals that are concerned with the day-to-day practice of health service staff, and which have the potential to have an impact on the health or wellbeing of patients and users of the NHS. As a response mode researcher-led programme, Research for Patient Benefit does not specify topics for research, but encourages proposals for projects which address a wide range of health service issues and challenges.

The programme aims to fund high quality quantitative and qualitative research with a clear trajectory to patient benefit. It particularly encourages applications that have a strong element of interaction with patients and the public, and which have been conceived in association with a relevant group of service users.

NIHR Programme Grants for Applied Research (Competition 32)
National Institute for Health Research

01 April 2020, 13:00
Dependent on the nature of the proposed work
Dependent on the nature of the proposed work

Applications are invited for Stage 1 research proposals to develop individual programmes of research. Research funded through a Programme Grant typically consists of an interrelated group of high quality projects focused on a coherent theme and hence require multidisciplinary approaches, including clinical, health economics, statistics, qualitative, and behavioural sciences, to ensure that research objectives can be met. The amount awarded and the length of the funding period will depend on the nature of the proposed work, in particular whether or not the proposal includes a substantial powered trial.

Applications to PGfAR are made with the support of an NHS body and other providers of NHS services in England. If an application is successful, a contract will be placed with that organisation for delivery of the research and all funds for the research will be paid to the NHS organisation or other provider of NHS services.

Fellows Award (Children and Young People)
MQ: Transforming mental health through research

03 April 2020, 17:00
3 years

MQ seeks to fund a diverse research portfolio that reflects a bio-psycho-social approach to mental health. The MQ Fellows Awards are open to researchers anywhere in the world and from all disciplines related to mental health research. Research may involve theoretical, experimental, social sciences or medical humanities approaches.

Aligning with the work of the Brighter Futures Programme, applications to the 2020 MQ Fellows Award must have a focus on children and young people (defined as from prenatal development up to 24 years of age). Projects should focus on genuine impact by charting, informing, developing and/or testing preventative or therapeutic interventions.

NIHR Efficacy and Mechanism Evaluation Programme Researcher-led (19/138)
Medical Research Council & National Institute for Health Research

16 April 2020, 13:00
No limit
No limit

This programme is funded by the MRC and NIHR, with contributions from the CSO in Scotland, Health and Care Research in Wales, and the HSC R&D Division Public Health Agency in Northern Ireland.

This programme looks to attract studies with novel methodological designs that deliver results more efficiently, reduce the study timeline, and maximise the knowledge gained. The translational research it supports covers a wide range of new and repurposed interventions, such as diagnostic or prognostic tests and decision-making tools, therapeutics or psychological treatments, medical devices, and public health initiatives delivered in the NHS.

Collaborative Awards in Science
Wellcome Trust

21 April 2020, 17:00
£4 million
Usually up to 5 years, but can be up to 7 years in exceptional circumstances

Collaborative Awards promote the development of new ideas and speed the pace of discovery. These grants fund teams of researchers, consisting of independent research groups, to work together on the most important scientific problems that can only be solved through collaborative efforts.

Smarts Grant
Innovate UK

22 April 2020, 12:00
£500k (single or collaborative projects) or £2million (collaborative projects only)
6-18 months (single or collaborative projects) or 19-36 months (collaborative projects only)

Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation, is investing up to £25 million in the best game-changing and commercially viable innovative or disruptive ideas. All proposals must be business focused.

Applications can come from any area of technology and be applied to any part of the economy, such as but not exclusively:

  • The arts, design and media
  • Creative industries
  • Science or engineering

NIHR Health Services and Delivery Research Programme Researcher-led (20/02)
National Institute for Health Research

23 April 2020, 13:00
No limit
No limit

The Health Services and Delivery Research (HS&DR) Programme is accepting stage 1 applications to their researcher-led work-stream. The NIHR HS&DR Programme funds research to produce evidence to impact on the quality, accessibility and organisation of health and social care services. This includes evaluations of how the NHS and social care might improve delivery of services. The audience for this research is the public, service users, clinicians, professionals, and managers.

The HS&DR Programme aims to produce rigorous and relevant evidence on the quality, access and organisation of health and social care services, including costs and outcomes. The programme will enhance the strategic focus on research that matters to the NHS including research on implementation and a range of knowledge mobilisation initiatives.

NIHR Health Technology Assessment Researcher-Led Open Call (19/160)
National Institute for Health Research

06 May 2020, 13:00
No limit
No limit

The Health Technology Assessment Programme undertakes research for the benefit of patients and the NHS. Health technology covers any method used to promote health, prevent and treat disease and improve rehabilitation or long-term care. ‘Technologies’ in this context are not confined to new drugs or equipment, but include procedures, devices, tests, settings of care, screening programmes and any intervention used in the treatment, prevention or diagnosis of disease.

They should be currently used in the NHS, or likely to be used if supported by the results of the research. Technologies being evaluated should have had some assessment of efficacy already. For less well evaluated technologies consider the EME Programme.

Proposals to evaluate public health interventions in other settings may be eligible to apply to the Public Health Research Programme.

GOSH Charity and Sparks National Funding 2019/2020
Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity and Sparks

25 July 2020, 16:00
3 years

Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity and Sparks are inviting project grant applications for child health research from researchers across the UK. The emphasis of this call is on complex childhood illness, including rare diseases. The call will support translational research across the spectrum of medical conditions affecting the fetus, neonates and children directly, as well as pregnancy disorders that affect the child.

All projects must aim to improve understanding and/or outcomes for the child and have the potential to lead to the development of new diagnostic tools and novel interventions. Proposals will be asked to articulate a clear route to clinical application and strong partnership between clinical and laboratory- based research.

Public Health Research Programme: Interactive Electronic Devices and Children and Young People’s Wellbeing (19/135)
National Institute for Health Research

28 July 2020, 13:00
No limit
No limit

This programme is interested in the impacts on health, health inequalities and related outcomes of interactive electronic devices for children and young people. The programme is interested in both maximising the benefits and minimising the harms for health outcomes as a result of the use interactive electronic devices activities by children and young people.

Horizon 2020: SME Instrument – Phase 1
Knowledge Transfer Network

04 November 2020, 17:00
6 months

The SME Instrument supports high-risk, high-potential small and medium-sized enterprises to develop and bring to market new products, services and business models that could drive economic growth.

The SME Instrument is for innovators with ground-breaking concepts that could shape new markets or disrupt existing ones in Europe and worldwide.

Innovator Awards
Wellcome Trust

Apply online at any time, shortlisting occurs every 3 months
Up to £500k (or £750k for multidisciplinary collaborations)
Up to 24 months (or 36 months for multidisciplinary collaborations)

Innovator Awards are open to researchers who are developing healthcare innovations that could have a major and measurable impact on human health. You can work in any scientific discipline, including a discipline outside life sciences. You can work on any type of technology. Examples of technologies include: therapeutics (small molecules or biologics); vaccines; devices; diagnostics; digital technologies; and regenerative medicine. The work that you propose must be essential for developing your healthcare innovation.

Nesta Impact Investments

Open call
£1 million
No limit

Nesta want to see the power of innovation and technology used to address big social issues. Their mission is to invest in high impact innovations run by outstanding entrepreneurs. They invest primarily to create real and lasting social impact in the UK, as well as generating a financial return for our investors. They invest between £150k and £1m in social ventures developing innovations that tackle the major challenges faced by older people, children, and communities in the UK.

Healthcare Technologies: Call for Investigator-led Research Projects

Open call
Flexible depending on quality and demand
No limit

This call is aimed at researchers working in Engineering, Physical Sciences, ICT, and Mathematical Sciences that are now seeking to apply their research expertise to a defined healthcare challenge. Applications to this call must be clearly aligned to the Healthcare Technologies theme Grand Challenges: Developing Future Therapies; Frontiers of Physical Intervention; Optimising Treatment; and Transforming Community Health and Care.

Economic and Social Research Council: Research Grants
Economic and Social Research Council

No fixed closing date
Up to £1 million
Up to 5 years

The ESRC Research Grants (open call) invites proposals from eligible individuals and research teams for standard research projects, large-scale surveys and other infrastructure projects and for methodological developments. The call offers researchers considerable flexibility to focus on any subject area or topic providing that it falls within ESRC’s remit. Proposals can draw from the wider sciences, but the social sciences must represent more than 50 per cent of the research focus and effort.

Ambitious and novel research proposals addressing new concepts and techniques and those with the potential for significant scientific or societal and economic impact are particularly encouraged. They are keen to encourage fresh ideas from new researchers and appropriate proposals are welcomed from those with limited research experience.

Funding decisions are based on a number of criteria including quality, timeliness, potential impact and value for money.

LifeArc Philanthropic Fund

Open call
A share of £5 million 
No limit

LifeArc invites applications for its philanthropic fund. This supports medical research projects focused on translation of rare diseases research. The aim is to accelerate scientific breakthroughs to deliver new medicines for patients with these conditions and projects must focus on developing an intervention, therapeutic, device or diagnostic, that will address a significant, unaddressed need for rare disease patients and on research which has a credible translational and development path to reaching those patients.

Grants will either be awarded directly to academics or will be partnered with similar funds being awarded by our rare disease charity partners.

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