Regional Impact from Science of the Environment - Announcement of Opportunity

This was previously advertised as the Environmental Science Impact Programme (ESIP).

Je-S open date: 6 July 2017

Closing date for outline proposals: 16:00 on 21 September 2017

Update January 2018: Seven applications have been invited to go to the full proposal stage. The awards will be announced in June 2018.

NERC will contribute £2·5 million-£4 million at 80% full economic cost over five years for research organisations to boost impact from NERC environmental science.


The Regional Impact from Science of the Environment (RISE) initiative follows on from the Environmental Science Impact Programme (ESIP), with a continued focus on developing regional impact from environmental science. This ambition has also been clearly articulated in the recent Building our Industrial Strategy green paper and, as well as focusing on impact in their region, applications to RISE should look for opportunities to address the key ambitions of the industrial strategy.


RISE is dedicated to bringing research organisations together with businesses, policy bodies and other actors contributing to economic development specific to their location, to deliver significant regional impact from NERC environmental science.

Details of the two successful awards from 2016 can be found in this news announcement.

NERC invites research organisations with a strong and substantial portfolio of NERC-funded research to apply through RISE calls for a five-year programme of activity with a NERC contribution of £2·5 million-£4 million at 80% full economic cost.

Focus for the call

The call is being framed broadly within the scope of the UK industrial strategy, recognising that, while the overarching ambitions of this strategy have been defined in ten pillars, the strategy document is currently under consultation. Applicants are encouraged to take a flexible and creative approach to delivering against the purpose of this initiative. As was the case with ESIP, programmes should be designed to support the strategic ambitions of the research organisation(s) involved, while understanding and gaining benefit from the opportunities offered by their region.

RISE will fund a limited number of highly ambitious programmes that will achieve transformative impact from NERC environmental science research by:

  • bringing considerable NERC investment in excellent research within the participating research organisation(s), together with strengths in businesses, policy bodies and other stakeholders particular to their location(s)
  • conducting a coherent programme of high impact, focused, co-designed and co-delivered research translation and innovation activities
  • leveraging benefits and contributions from other sources of funds relevant to the ambition of the proposal
  • creating durable collaborations between the academic and non-academic participants.

Transformative impact will be achieved through the translation of NERC science into actions or policies that improve performance, resilience and sustainability, and support growth. Programmes bringing in other discipline interests in order to maximise environmental science impacts will be in scope where this adds value to the proposed work. The geographical reach of this impact may range from regional to global (recognising the industrial strategy aim to service global markets), and can include societal and economic benefits, but there must be realisable economic gains to the region. The region will be defined by the focus of the impact programme the research organisation(s) has chosen.

NERC will take an active interest in funded programmes throughout their duration.

For further information please refer to the documents below:

Announcement of Opportunity (PDF, 148KB)

Frequently asked questions (PDF, 123KB)

Je-S guidance (PDF, 279KB)


For further information on RISE, please contact:

Lynne Porter
01793 411791