Humanity faces profound questions about how our planet can sustain nine billion people by 2050. With the trend of urbanisation, the majority of the world’s population now live in cities. There is a global nutrition crisis, with dual problems of undernutrition and obesity. Meanwhile, environmental and population changes have major implications for issues including food and nutrition security, access to clean water and sanitation, and natural disasters. In meeting these challenges and delivering culturally, socially and economically appropriate solutions, research has a critical role to play.
The Wellcome Trust are pleased to launch our Sustaining Health awards scheme, with a call for proposals for pilot research projects in this broad area. This call supports small awards in the order of £250 000 (exceptionally up to £500 000) for up to two years.
- These small awards are designed to open up research avenues that will ultimately lead to work with a significant impact on human health. Pilot projects may address any aspect of the interplay between health, environment and nutrition, but a focus on health is key. Projects are not required to cover issues related to both environment and nutrition.
- Our scoping work highlighted the explosion of data in the public and private domains, and the importance of harnessing its value for society. In recognition of this, we would particularly like to see proposals with the potential to unlock the power of data by making it more relevant, available, accessible and useful (e.g. by formatting to permit inter-linkage). The size of these awards makes them well suited to projects that exploit existing datasets or pilot novel approaches to data collection and exploration.
- Projects outside of this theme, but relevant to the Sustaining Health area in other ways, are also welcomed.
We expect these awards to stimulate collaborations and build capacity for interdisciplinary research. We believe that high-quality research in this area requires the development of new interdisciplinary and cross-sector partnerships, particularly between biomedical (including public health) researchers and those working in social, economic, environmental, climate, agricultural, development and computer sciences.