MMU Research and Knowledge Exchange Blog

Funding opportunities, news and guidance from RKE at Manchester Met

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2015 CRACK IT Challenges Announced!


The 2015 CRACK IT Challenges competition consists of two Challenges identified jointly by the NC3Rs and Sponsors:

The CRACK IT scheme is a challenge-led competition that funds collaborations between industry, academics and SMEs to solve business and scientific ‘Challenges’ which if solved will deliver 3Rs and commercial benefits, either by improving business processes or developing a commercialisable product.

The latest challenges are:

Challenge 20: Metaboderm: Development of a new tool to predict metabolism in human skin.

Challenge 21: InMutaGene: Development of a technology to address the risks of insertional mutagenesis/oncogenesis and to improve the efficiency of translational research in gene therapy.

This year the competition is funded by the NC3Rs and supported by Innovate UK, Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI) with in-kind contribution from the Sponsors.

Full and Further details of the Challenges and Sponsors and registration for the Launch Event on 10 September will be released on 3 August 2015 on the CRACK IT and SBRI websites.

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Transport Challenge Information Day – Save the Date

The next info day on the 2016-2017 Work Programme for Societal Challenge 4: ‘Smart, green and integrated transport’ will take place on 5 November 2015 in Brussels.

​The event is aimed at potential applicants willing to submit proposals to the transport calls included in the new Work Programme for 2016-17. Presentations will cover the content of the new Work Programme and the application procedure, as well as detailed information on the calls. Participants will also have the opportunity to network throughout the day.

More information and the agenda will be available soon, and compulsory registration for the event will open in September.

 Please email if you have any questions.

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Cancer Research UK funding scheme: Pioneer Award

The Pioneer Award will fund research into truly innovative, ground-breaking ideas with the potential to lead to new discoveries or approaches that will help us better understand, prevent, diagnose or treat cancer.

Projects supported by the Pioneer Award will have a clear relevance to cancer and enable the exploration of novel ideas, which may lead to new discoveries or approaches. Awards will be made to the value of up to £200,000 over two years.

Applications to the Pioneer Award are welcomed from individuals and teams, regardless of background or vocation, across a breadth of disciplines. We will fund investigators at all career stages, regardless of track record or publishing history.

Proposals to the Pioneer Award are accepted all year round, with no set deadlines. A unique application process, with applicant anonymity, will ensure the best ideas receive funding.

Please click the poster for more information.

CRUK Pioneer Award poster (020715)

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2015 Funding Call: Newton Advanced Fellowships


Newton Advanced Fellowships provide mid-career researchers with an opportunity to develop the research strengths and capabilities of their research group or network through training, collaboration and reciprocal visits with a partner in the UK. Applications are welcome from the following Newton Fund Partner Countries: Mexico, Malaysia, and Thailand.

The closing date is Wednesday, 16 September 2015, 5pm .

Awards last for one or two years (depending on the country) and are available to support researchers across the social sciences and humanities.

Funding is available for:

  • A salary top up for the principal applicant from the Newton Fund Partner Country.
  • Research support to cover costs for studentships, staff, consumables or equipment.
  • Travel and subsistence to cover travel costs of the UK partner to the international partner and/or travel of the international partner to the UK.
  • Training to support the career development of the applicant and their research group or network.

Please note: Opportunities vary depending on the Newton Fund partner country. Please check the relevant scheme notes for each country for further information and a full break down of costs.

For more information on this call, eligibility and how to apply, visit: here

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The Royal Society Latest Funding Opportunities

royal society
Newton International Fellowship (closes 9 September 2015)
This scheme is for non-UK scientists who are at an early stage of their research career and wish to conduct research in the UK.

Royal Society Research Professorship (closes 3 November 2015)
This scheme is for world-class scientists who would benefit from a period of long-term support to allow them to focus on research and collaboration based at an institution in the UK.

Brian Mercer Feasibility Award (ongoing)
This scheme is for scientists who wish to investigate the feasibility of commercialising an aspect of their research

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NEW FUNDING ALERT: Alzheimer’s Society, Implementation grants

Alzeimer's Society LogoThe Alzheimer’s Society is launching a new grant scheme in 2015 to enable the scaling-up of promising non-drug treatments, programmes and services to improve the health and well-being of people affected by dementia.

The implementation grant scheme is open to people looking to move dementia care, services and public health research into practice.

Further Details: Applicants can apply for grants of up to £400,000 that will either:

a) enable the scale-up of evidence based interventions that have been shown to improve care and are ready to be implemented at a larger scale, or;
b) lay the foundations for the scale-up of evidence based interventions; preparatory work and testing the feasibility of bringing dementia research knowledge into the real world.

All applications must:

  • demonstrate involvement of appropriate end users of the research in the development and delivery of the proposal
  • proposals must demonstrate sufficient evidence, for example from up to date systematic reviews, that the intervention is ready to be moved into the outside world.
  • use methods for enabling change that are grounded in theory.

Outline Application Deadline: 21st August 2015

Further details:

Please contact the RKE office to discuss your ideas!

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BBSRC Responsive Mode deadlines

BBSRC logo

BBSRC has a unique and central place in supporting the UK’s world-leading position in bioscience. They are an investor in research and training, with the aim of furthering scientific knowledge, to promote economic growth, wealth and job creation and to improve quality of life in the UK and beyond.

Note for applicants: You will be formally contacted, shortly following the Committee Chairs meeting, by the office regarding the outcome of your application once the final funding decision has been confirmed.

More information about the following deadlines can be found here 

Round Application Deadline Committee meeting dates

(when applications are assessed)

Committee Chairs meeting dates
15RM3 23 September 2015, 4pm 2-3 February 2016 March 2016 (date TBC)
16RM1 13 January 2016 11-12 May 2016 June 2016 (date TBC)

Remember the RKE office are here to help you develop your bids! If you are interested in applying, please contact your RDM. Or email

How do bone cells grow in space?

A ROCKET carrying technology developed with BBSRC support has blasted into space for use in experiments on board the International Space Station (ISS). Alvetex® Scaffold technology, produced by Durham University spin-out company Reinnervate, allows cells to be grown in three dimensions (3D), overcoming problems with two-dimensional (2D) culture methods and offering a more life-like model of how cells grow in tissues.