CZO Announcement of Opportunity: A UK China Collaboration

Update 4 February 2015: We can now confirm that successful applicants at the EoI stage will be asked to attend a meeting in Nanjing, China, week commencing 13 April 2015 (exact dates to be confirmed shortly). We will endeavour to let applicants know as soon as possible after the deadline if they have been invited to submit a full proposal and thus to attend the workshop in China. However we are aware that there will be a relatively short time period to arrange logistics for travel. Therefore applicants are advised to consider making provisional preparations to attend the workshop once their EoI has been submitted.

NERC in the UK and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) are investing in a strategic research programme to understand and seek ways to address the challenges faced for the delivery of China's ecosystems services in association with their agricultural production and urbanisation.

Expressions of Interest are invited for a call under this programme. This call is supported by the UK through the Newton Fund which forms part of the UK governments Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment and is only open to joint UK-China applications.

The call for proposals will be undertaken as a three stage process.

  1. An Expression of Interest (EoI) must be submitted via email by the 6 March 2015 deadline. EoIs will be sifted based on remit and strategic requirement to ensure the programmes objectives are met. Successful applicants will be invited to submit full proposals.
  2. Successful applicants at the EoI stage will also be asked to attend a meeting week commencing 13 April 2015, in Nanjing, China, at which NERC and NSFC will provide further advice and context (details to be confirmed).
  3. Full proposals will be submitted via Je-S by the deadline 27 May 2015 (tbc). Full proposals will go through external peer review and then to a moderating panel. Successful full proposal teams will attend a kick-off workshop in 2016 where they will identify integrative and coordination activities between the different grants.

The programme aims to cover all of the following objectives, with individual proposals expected to address one or more of the following:

  • understand the importance of spatial variation and scale (from field to landscape) on the ability of soils and water within the critical zone (CZ) to perform their multiple functions
  • development of modelling approaches and improvement of model skill, with the integration of wider disciplines, in the prediction of resilience
  • within the context of environmental stressors within China (eg erosion, pollutants, extreme weather, changing agricultural practices, and water availability), seek to understand and improve the resilience of soils and water to perturbations.

All applications must be collaborations between UK and Chinese researchers. Applications to this call must be in English.

Please see the Announcement of Opportunity document and Expression of Interest form below for full details.

Announcement of Opportunity (PDF, 253KB)

Page 11 of the Announcement of Opportunities refers to Partner Applications, please use the template below to submit details of Chinese partner applications and upload to Je-S as document type Non UK component.

CZO Chinese applicants template (Word, 126KB)

Newton CZO Q&A (PDF, 102KB)

Expression of interest form (Word, 107KB)

Expression of Interest forms must be submitted via email as a word document both to NERC at by 08:00 (GMT) and NSFC at by 16:00 (CST) on 6 March 2015.

Applicants will be informed in mid March 2015 if they are to be invited to proceed to the full proposal stage.

Only applicants successful at the Expression of Interest stage will be invited to proceed to the full proposal stage. It is expected that the call for full proposals will be open from March 2015 and the closing date for applications will be 16:00 GMT 27 May 2015


For further information about this announcement of opportunity please contact:

Amy Vitale
07928 669002