2019 WUN Research Development Fund

Deadline has passed





The RDF provides grants of up to £10,000 , for one year, to augment institutional funds in fostering research collaborations among academic staff (faculty members) at partner universities. The RDF supports work across four WUN Global Challenges that lie at the heart of our mission: Responding to Climate Change, Public Health (non-communicable diseases), Global Higher Education and Research, and Understanding Cultures.

Four Global Challenge Steering Groups identify priorities that are informed by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. The RDF provides a mechanism for the Steering Groups to stimulate research initiatives.

Grants from the RDF are intended to help stimulate larger collaborative projects that will strengthen WUN and make the collaborating partners competitive for major awards. Funds may be used to support such things as exploratory research initiatives, planning workshops, faculty exchanges and the formation of collaborative networks.



  • Projects should be academically rigorous, and address problems of consequence within the broad research domain covered by the Global Challenges. Projects that address one or more 2019-20 priority areas identified by the Global Challenge Steering Groups, and/or involve collaboration across two or more Global Challenges, are particularly encouraged. More information about priority areas can be found at the bottom of this document.
  • Projects should establish or strengthen the collaborative linkages among member universities, and should engage at least three member universities in at least two countries . Projects that engage newer members of WUN are especially encouraged.
  • Projects should help enlarge the impact and global recognition of WUN. Projects that have the following attributes are especially encouraged:
    • They have significant outcomes that are likely to attract broad public interest.
    • They address problems that are aligned with major international funding initiatives from national governments and/or international agencies.
  • Projects should be aimed at problems that the partnership can pursue with distinctive advantage. WUN is likely to have special advantage when the research problem:
    • Requires distinctive constellations of talent that are best assembled (or can only be assembled) by drawing on multiple partners.
    • Presents opportunities for comparative analysis, stemming from member universities’ locations in different geographical and cultural contexts.
    • Requires access to unique environments/resources possessed by one or more partners.