Announcement of Opportunity: Reducing the Impacts of Plastic Waste in Developing Countries

Closing date for notification of intent to submit: 16:00 GMT on 20 January 2020

Closing date for full proposals: 16:00 GMT on 17 March 2020

Update: UK Research and Innovation has recently announced changes to requirements on ‘Pathways to Impact’. As a result of this change, you will no longer be required to provide a ‘Pathways to Impact’ plan or complete an ‘Impact Summary’ within your grant proposal.

These requirements will be removed for all UKRI opportunities by 1 March 2020, so the section and attachment type will disappear from any proposal “under preparation” by applicants or research offices by 1 March. 

Applicants for this call should follow this guidance: A separate Pathways to Impact statement is no longer required, but applicants must still consider how they will or might achieve impact throughout their projects and include this as part of their Case for Support. Activities to realize impact do not have to be cost-incurring, but relevant costs can be included and must be fully justified within the Justification of Resources statement. The Case for Support page limit will not be increased as a result of this change.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), invites proposals for international, interdisciplinary, collaborative research projects under the Reducing the Impacts of Plastic Waste in Developing Countries call. This programme is funded through the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF).

GCRF forms part of the UK's Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment, and funding under this call will be awarded in a manner consistent with ODA guidelines.

The aim of this programme is to support the interdisciplinary research needed to understand the risks plastic pollution poses in Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs) and to explore which interventions, policies and regulations can mitigate these risks. Research to develop new forms of plastic or alternatives to plastic is out of scope for this programme. The outputs of the research will support economic growth and societal wellbeing by enabling a cleaner and more resilient and productive environment.

Where appropriate, projects funded through this call will be considered part of the UK contribution to the Commonwealth Marine Plastics Research and Innovation Framework, which aims to provide a platform and overarching structure for bringing together governments, industry, researchers and practitioners from across the Commonwealth to work together to tackle this global issue.

This call aims to support up to five international, interdisciplinary, collaborative research projects with a value of up to £3.5m (cost to UKRI); UK institutions are eligible for 80% full economic costs (FEC) and overseas organisations are eligible for 100% direct project costs. The total available budget for this call is £20m. It is expected that projects will start in July 2020 and have a maximum duration of four years.

All projects are required to have a Principal Investigator based in a UK Research Organisation eligible to hold UKRI grants. For this call, standard NERC eligibility rules apply, however it should be noted that PIs and Co-Is from any discipline supported by UKRI are welcomed and encouraged to apply, within the parameters of the call. Projects involving co-investigators and researchers based in LMICs are expected, and are eligible to receive funding via a UK Research Organisation.

This call has a Notification of Intent to Submit and a Full Proposal application stage. A Notification of Intent to Submit should be submitted using the Online form no later than 16:00 GMT on 20 January 2020. 

Submission of a Notification of Intent to Submit is a requirement of this call and full proposals will only be accepted from those teams who submit a completed Notification of Intent to Submit online form prior to the deadline. The lead PI should not change between submission of a Notification of Intent to Submit and submission of a full proposal.

Full proposals must be submitted via the UK Research Councils’ Joint Electronic Submission (Je-S) system before 16:00 GMT on 17 March 2020.

Please see the Announcement of Opportunity (PDF, 625KB) for full details of the call.