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Saturday, 23 October 2021
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RSE launches two funding initiatives to kick-start academic research

THE Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE), Scotland’s national academy, this week announced two new funding calls to help tackle two of the world’s most urgent challenges: the impact of COVID-19 and climate change.

The grants will be available to researchers and academics whose work has been adversely affected by COVID-19, or who are investigating the impact of climate change.

The first fund – the RSE Research Re-Boot (COVID-19 IMPACT) Research Grant – provides financial backing for academics of up to £25,000 to restart existing research or kick-start new work. The fund was created to support anyone whose work has been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. Applications are particularly encouraged from one or more of the following groups: those who have taken on caring responsibilities due to COVID-19, disabled, LGBTQIA+, Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) and/or Early Career Researchers (ECRs).

Successful applicants will not only receive financial support but will also be part of a unique peer support network enabling the sharing of experience and knowledge and supported by input from RSE Fellows.

The second fund – the RSE COP 26 International Climate Change Network Grant – offers funding of up to £10,000 for existing research networks to assess the impact of climate change ahead of Scotland hosting COP26 later this year.

The funding will help researchers who have been inhibited by travel restrictions across international borders to collaborate virtually with other experts in their field to improve our understanding of solutions for our shared climate future. The funding is available as part of the RSE and Scottish Funding Council (SFC) agreement.

Dr Rebekah Widdowfield, Chief Executive of the RSE, said:

“The role played by science and research has never been more important. The last 12 months have highlighted the value of continual investment in our science and research base in enabling us to mitigate and respond to national and global challenges.

“Our aim, through these two new awards, is to support academics who the pandemic has negatively impacted to reboot their research and also to facilitate international collaboration on climate change in the run-up to COP26. Two different funds but both with the potential to change lives for both individuals and wider society.”

Dr Stuart Fancey, SFC’s Director of Research and Innovation, said:

“These calls create the space for fresh thinking for those impacted by the various pressures of COVID-19. They also nurture networks and capacity-building within Scotland’s research base and allow us to strengthen our international connections which are all the more important in a post-Brexit research landscape. We very much look forward to seeing the outcomes of these two new award programmes put in place by the RSE.”

Applications must be submitted by 3 March. Full details available on the RSE website.

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