Research beyond borders

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International Funding Opportunities Closing Soon

Happy new year, and just a quick reminder that there are lots of international funding calls closing in the next month……

AHRC international development call

As part of the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF), the AHRC have a call for Area Based Network Plus awards for Arts and Humanities based approaches to addressing global development challenges. It is expected that applications will have a strong collaborative element with ODA (Overseas Development Assistance) countries. The awards will be £1.5-2 Million and over 4 years, and offer a flexible model of scoping, partnership building and running funding calls. Closing date: 18 January 2017

European Commission Funding

The topics to be funded under European Commission Challenge ‘Europe in a changing World – inclusive, innovative and reflective societies’ work programme close soon. These topics are more closely defined than a research council theme, but are still more open than commissioned research. In 2017 there is particular arts and humanities interest under the theme ‘Understanding Europe – Promoting the European Public and Cultural Space’ For example topics include:

  • Contemporary histories of Europe in artistic and creative practices
  • Religious diversity in Europe – past, present and future
  • Participatory approaches and social innovation in culture

Most close 2 or 4 February 2017 (note some of these are now 2 stage processes so involve an outline proposal). If you need assistance with applying, the UK contact point for this challenge is Ben Sharman

Hello Shenzen: Researching the Ethics of Makerspaces

The AHRC and British Council have a UK/China opportunity for research into the China Maker movement that closes 29 January 2017. Note: applications need to comply with Overseas Development Assistance (ODA)

International Placement Scheme

The AHRC International Placement Scheme offers the opportunity for doctoral and Early Career researchers to visit seven world leading institutions in the USA, Japan and China. Closes 19 January  2017 


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Brazil/UK Creative Lab – opportunity to attend


Social Change through Creativity and Culture is a new project that brings together academics, artists and creative practitioners from Brazil and the UK to initiate and collaborate on creative projects that directly address social challenges in specific Brazilian social contexts.

The project will immerse individuals in an innovative lab experience, intended to catalyse cross-disciplinary collaborations and dialogue, during an intensive 10-day period. Over the course of the lab, participants will be tasked with developing a practical idea to take forward together through further collaborative research over the following months.

For guidance and how to apply please see the AHRC website. Application deadline is 17th September 2015

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Preserving Egypt’s Cultural Heritage – call for participants

EgyptThe AHRC have just announced a call for researchers to attend a workshop on ‘Preserving Egypt’s Cultural Heritage: Mitigating Threats for a Sustainable Future’. Organised in partnership with the Science and Technology Development Fund in Egypt (STDF), the event will bring together academic experts from both countries to address an issue of growing importance as Egypt seeks to preserve and position its rich cultural history within the context of growing international concerns about the threats modern society is posing to cultural heritage.

Expressions of interest to participate in the workshop are invited from UK-based researchers meeting the AHRC’s standard eligibility requirements. The AHRC expects to support the attendance of around 15 UK-based researchers, with the STDF identifying a similar number of researchers based in Egypt. Deadline for applications is 9 September 2015.

The workshop will take place in Cairo, Egypt over two days from 12th to 14th October. This activity is funded through the Newton Fund – a 5 year programme that aims to strengthen research and innovation partnerships between the UK and emerging knowledge economies.

Further information and guidance regarding how to apply to attend can be found on the AHRC website

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Film: China: Cultural Encounters

To coincide with the GREAT Festival of Creativity, the latest film from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) looks at how the AHRC is leading the way in the bringing together of UK/Chinese academic partners in the arts, humanities, and creative industries.

The GREAT Festival of Creativity (2 to 4 March 2015, Shanghai) supports British businesses looking to secure opportunities and growth in China. More than 500 world-leading British companies will showcase the best of British creativity and the role it plays today’s world.

The Festival will be attended by business and thought leaders including Professor Rick Rylance, CEO of the AHRC. In this short film we hear from Professor Rylance about several projects, funded by the AHRC, involving partnerships with Chinese Universities and cultural institutions: from the ‘Ming: 50 Years That Changed China’ exhibition at the British Museum, to the ArtsCross project which brings together academics and artists from UK, China and Taiwan, to cross cultural, national and artistic borders.

The film also looks at the economic boom being experienced in the creative industries and how China is looking to the UK for models on how to understand and harness the value in practice based research in the arts and humanities.

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New UK/France Joint Funding Call – coming soon!

LABEXThe AHRC is pleased to announce an exciting new opportunity bringing together researchers based in France and the UK.

The call focuses on the relationship between history, heritage and memory; on representations and uses of the past in the present; shared histories and transnational perspectives; legacies of difficult and divisive pasts; the digital age and its effect on tangible and intangible heritage – and more.

The aim is to encourage collaborative transnational research involving UK and French scholars, as well as partners from the Heritage and other sectors.

The call is co-funded by the AHRC and France’s Cluster of Excellence Pasts in the Present, (a.k.a. LABEX PasP), under their themes ‘Care for the Future: Thinking Forward through the Past’ (AHRC) and ‘Pasts in Present: History, Heritage, Memory’ (LABEX PasP).

Projects should be 18 – 30 months in length. Applicants can apply for 60,000 – 80,000 Euros for the French component, and up to £100,000 for the UK component. It is hoped that around 6 – 10 projects will be supported.

Full call details will be published on Thursday 12th March 2015. The deadline for submission of proposals will be Thursday 2nd July 2015.

An AHRC-LABEX jiscmail group has been set up to help applicants find partners and share ideas.

More information on the call is available on the AHRC website and the LABEX Pasts in the Present website (in French)

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HERA ‘Uses of the Past’ – Full call launches

HERAIt’s what you have all been waiting for – full guidance documents are now available on the HERA website for the new uses of the past call.

If we have one tip to give you, it is make sure you read both the HERA UP call for Proposal 2015 and the HERA UP General and National Eligibility Guidelines. These both must be adhered to and are of equal importance.  Second to this is to register early for the submission system as you need to create an ID in order to submit an outline proposal (This not Je-S, HERA is using the Danish online system so you are unlikely to have an account).

If you are looking for partners – remember the HERA partner search tool will function up to the deadline.  Deadline for outline proposals is 6pm 9 April 2015 (GMT)

We still have a few places left for the morning session of the UK information event (4th Feb). If you are able to submit a registration please assume you can come, we will only close the registration when full. We will send you further details when registered but this may take a couple of days so submission is sufficient confirmation that a place has been allocated to you.

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Immersive, inspired and collaborative – a view from India’s unbox festival

Laura Bones from the AHRC writes about the Unbox fesitval

In December 2014 I attended the UnBox festival in Delhi. The UnBox festival is an interdisciplinary festival which brings together professionals from many different sectors, to encourage inspiration and collaboration.

3 X 4 workshop. Photo courtesy of Vivek Muthuramalingam

3 X 4 workshop. Photo courtesy of Vivek Muthuramalingam

In February 2014, the AHRC funded 8 UK researchers to go to the UnBox LABS at the National Institute of Design, in Ahmedabad, along with UK and Indian creative practitioners and researchers. This was an immersive 10 day experience where participants were given the opportunity to network and develop joint project ideas. The AHRC funded 4 follow-on projects from the LABS and it was great to see these showcased at the UnBox festival. The workshops and display boards showed how the projects had developed from those initial ideas at the LABS stage.

One project which proved very popular was ‘3×4’. They demonstrated their immersive telematic environment, which merged two 3×4 metre room installations, one at the Southbank centre in London and one in Khoj International Artists Association, Delhi. This gave participants the opportunity to explore and play across the digital space. It was fun to be able to interact with participants in another country through the merged image and to be able to co-create the background images. The installation was deliberately 3×4 metres in size, as this is the plot size provided in some resettlement colonies in India, and the project team wished to see how participants explored the qualities and values built through self-organised communities that are lost in the resettlement process. They will go on to analyse the footage of the interactions and see how people reacted differently to the space.

3 x 4 unbox workshop. Photo courtesy of Vivek Muthuramalingam

3 x 4 unbox workshop. Photo courtesy of Vivek Muthuramalingam

Overall the festival was a great mix of workshops, talks, performances, visits and conversations. It has a really informal atmosphere which allows people the opportunity to talk and explore. I really enjoyed seeing how the AHRC projects had developed since the LABS stage and I attended some great workshops, ranging from topics such as gender discrimination to the Indian Mars mission. I also got to talk to a diverse range of people, from design consultants to local craftspeople.