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Climate change and health

Impact of Climate Change on Health

Last updated

22/12/23

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This funding call is now closed and we will not be accepting any further applications.


Climate change is a severe and continually growing threat to human health globally. It's estimated that climate change will cause 250,000 additional deaths per year between 2030 and 2050 (World Health Organization). This is an area that urgently needs research investment, which is why we are committing £4 million towards new research aimed at tackling the impact of climate change on health in sub-Saharan Africa.

The Medical Research Foundation is inviting applications for collaborative research grants, from mid-career researchers working on the impact of climate change on health.

This scheme is open to pairs of mid-career researchers, in countries in sub-Saharan Africa and the UK, who are making the transition to research independence and seeking to progress in their field. Projects should aim to develop a new collaboration or solidify an existing partnership between two researchers, expanding their research networks and building their research profiles to develop emerging research leaders in both countries.

Research supported through these grants should aim to increase understanding of the mechanisms underpinning, and processes involved, in the impact of climate change on infectious diseases and other non-infectious health outcomes that disproportionately affect sub-Saharan Africa.

Research proposals in the broad area of the impact of climate change on health could include, but are not limited to:

  • understanding the biological mechanisms underpinning the impact on human health of climate change
  • the development and implementation of treatments for climate-change related illnesses
  • understanding and reducing the impact of climate change on health and well-being.

Research into climate change itself, that does not consider impacts on health outcomes is not within the scope of this funding call.

The research supported in this funding call is possible thanks to the support of our generous donors.

Funding available

Applicants may apply for a research grant of up to £300,000 to support their collaborative project, over a maximum of a three year period. The Foundation has committed to making £4,000,000 available in this area.

Additional package of career-enhancing support

As well as funding innovative research projects, the Medical Research Foundation is committed to supporting its researchers’ career progression by providing access to a career-enhancing programme of support, including mentoring opportunities, training, networking events, and further funding only open to MRC and Foundation funded researchers.

Recipients of the Research Grants on the Impact of Climate Change on Health will also be given access to a bespoke programme of support that will aim to strengthen their skills and bring the climate change community together. Opportunities will include training in the establishment of equitable partnerships (delivered prior to the start of the research projects), grant-writing workshops and networking events.

Who can apply

Applications should represent a collaborative project between a mid-career researcher who is a national of and based in a sub-Saharan African country, from an organisation with an established legal entity in sub-Saharan Africa, and a mid-career UK-based researcher at an eligible institution (UK HEIs, Research Council research institutes, hospitals, and other independent research organisations). Nationality and country of residence/employment may be different.

UK-based applicants must hold a PhD, DPhil or MD, are expected to have postdoctoral experience and be in the process of, or be ready for, transition to research independence.

Sub-Saharan Africa-based applicants must hold a PhD, DPhil or MD, have active research experience and be in the process of, or be ready for, transition to research independence.

Deadline

  • Deadline for submission: 12:00 BST 28 September 2023
  • Shortlisting notification (request for rebuttal): January 2024
  • Deadline for rebuttal: February 2024
  • Funding decision: March 2024
  • Feedback on funding decision: March 2024

How to Apply

Applicants should apply online using our online grants management system.

Please see here for Guidance for Applicants.

Applicants must use our Résumé for Researchers template in their application.

Queries

The Medical Research Foundation is committed to making this application accessible to all by offering assistance where needed. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with the Research Team if you have any questions or concerns about the application process: research@medicalresearchfoundation.org.uk Tel: 0207 395 2314.

Terms and Conditions of Award

Awards funded through this competition will follow standard Medical Research Foundation terms and conditions. The terms and conditions spell out the responsibilities of the Principal Investigator and the Lead Research Organisation. The Principal Investigator and the Lead Research Organisation are required to indicate their formal acceptance of the proposal, their acceptance of the terms and conditions of an award, and the approval of the salaries and resources sought in the application.

The Medical Research Foundation may add additional conditions to a grant award to reflect the particular circumstances and requirements of the funding, or the nature of a particular award. Acceptance of an award constitutes acceptance of both the core conditions and any additional conditions. The Medical Research Foundation reserves the right to vary these terms and conditions.

Expert Review Panel

The Panel will be Chaired by Professor Nick Lemoine, Chair of the Medical Research Foundation’s Board of Trustees.

  • Dr Cyril Caminade, University of Liverpool
  • Professor Sinead Delany-Moretlwe, University of the Witwatersrand
  • Professor Hazel Dockrell, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
  • Professor Veronique Filippi, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
  • Professor Andrew Morse, University of Liverpool
  • Dr Kris Murray, MRC Unit The Gambia
  • Dr Helen Nabwera, Aga Khan University
  • Professor Refilwe Nancy Phaswana-Mafuya, University of Johannesburg
  • Professor Paolo Vineis, Imperial College London
  • Dr Caradee Wright, South African Medical Research Council
  • Professor Dorothy Yeboah-Manu, University of Ghana

Expert Review

Applications will be reviewed by independent peer review

Independent Peer Review Guidance


Frequently Asked Questions

Can the Medical Research Foundation help me find a research partner?

Unfortunately, the Foundation does not have the resources to help match researchers with appropriate partners. If your institute has a research development or research and innovation office, they may be able to
assist you.

What is a mid-career researcher?

The Foundation does not define a researcher as mid-career by their job title as this may vary between institutes and countries. Mid-career researchers are typically those with some or extensive postdoctoral experience and are in the process of, or ready for, transition to research independence. Mid-career researchers may have held or hold a Fellowship but have not secured multiple large grants as the Principal Investigator.

I am more than 10 years post-PhD, can I apply?

Yes, the Foundation does not restrict applicants to a maximum number of years post-PhD.

I am a professor, can I apply?

Usually no, the scheme is designed to support mid-career researchers who are making the transition to research independence. However, please do contact us if you think this does not apply.

What is the earliest start date?

Applicants should be aware, that if successful the Medical Research Foundation will carry out institutional due diligence checks which can take some months. The earliest likely start date is therefore autumn 2024.

Do I need to be a climate change expert?


No, the scheme is designed to support health researchers. However, applicants are encouraged to include climate change expertise in their research team, as appropriate for their proposal. This could be a
collaborator or mentor.

Are awards paid up-front or in arrears?

Payments to UK research institutes will be made quarterly in arrears upon receipt of appropriate invoices. Payments to sub-Saharan African institutes will be made up-front according to a payment schedule, unless otherwise requested by the institute.