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UCL Grand Challenges and the UCL Doctoral School

UCL GC and Doctoral School
The UCL Grand Challenges Doctoral Students' Small Grants scheme offers awards for pairs of doctoral students from different faculties for research-informed, societally relevant, cross-disciplinary activities. The call welcomes ideas for a range of activities including workshops, conferences, surveys, intervention research at community level, public engagement or interaction events addressing research challenges.

In Summer 2017, the first year the scheme ran, £29,000 was awarded to cross-disciplinary teams of UCL Doctoral students.

2017 Inaugural Call

Global Health

Sustainable Cities

  • Earthquake Preparedness First Aid Kit- A Video Series
  • In Otto Koeniger’s footsteps – workshops to encourage engagement
  • between HEIs and cities for Government of India’s Smart Cities Mission
  • Initiative. 

Cultural Understanding

  • Traditional Herbal Knowledge in the 21st century: Research Challenges and Future Prospects
  • Beyond Medical Practice: Cultural and Linguistic Training of Refugee Doctors for Integration and Employment in the UK
  • The usage of moving image as a scientific tool in technology versus an entertainment tool in art – International Interdisciplinary Conference 

Human Wellbeing

  • Identifying vulnerabilities in school-based infrastructure that facilitate violence
  • against girls/female students in schools in New Delhi, India
  • Men’s reading forum: discussing masculinity and ageing
  • Interdisciplinary approach to research on social relationships and health across the lifespan
  • Bridging the gap: environment and wellbeing across disciplines
  • Evaluating assessment tools for anxiety in boys with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

Transformative Technology

  • Workshop on Quantum Computing and Thermodynamics
  • Quantum Secrets of Photosynthesis
  • An art/science collaboration in renewable hydrogen energy for public events
  • Transforming Immunotherapy with Nature-Inspired Engineering

Justice & Equality

  • First UCL Interdisciplinary Conference on Disability: Breaking Barriers Towards a Just and Equal World

2018

Global Health

Human Wellbeing

  • Mental health crisis in midlife – generating hypotheses to guide future research on potential causes of the crisis
  • What are you looking for?: Development of a novel spatial memory test for children
  • Using Ecological Momentary Assessment to Identify Within- Person Influences on Health- Related Behaviours: A Workshop to Inform Cancer Prevention Research at UCL and Beyond

Transformative Technology

  • Automatic Prediction of Brand Personality: A Natural Language Processing Approach

Justice & Equality

  • Inclusive city planning: Social impacts of economic urban infrastructure in Colombia
  • Gender-Based Planning for Safe Cities and Safe Public Spaces
  • Human Rights and Environmental Impact of Mining in Chile

2018: Microbiology Domain Call

Global Health

  • Characterising the respiratory resistome in chronic lung disease using novel metagenomics approaches
  • An untapped resource: evaluating the use of hospital resected lung collections for characterising the within-host genetic diversity of drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis

Transformative Technology

  • Enzymatic degradation of plastic: Identification of polyethylene-degrading enzymes in Bacillus sp. YP1 and evolution of PET hydrolase for more efficient degradation of PET plastic
  • Unravelling the microbiomes in the cheese making process: from raw milk to mature cheese