UCL Grand Challenges


Priority & Mega Themes

    Grand Challenges and the SDGs: Pan-GC Strategic Priority Themes - 2019/20


    The UN Sustainable Development Goals

    The overall Grand Challenges programme is focusing on the ways in which cross-disciplinary research at UCL can inform the objectives laid out in the SDGs (the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals), also known as the Global Goals for Sustainable Development.

    In addition to prompting grassroots cross-disciplinary thinking in regard to any of the 17 SDGs (and the 169 associated targets), the GC programme as a whole will announce, before the summer break, a programme-wide, missions-oriented, initiative. The intention is to support the UCL community in developing an integrated cross-disciplinary response to the one or more of the challenges set out by the SDGs.

    169 Targets for a Better World

    The 17 Sustainable Development Goals were laid out in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The goals incorporate 169 specific targets which would lead to a better world by 2030.

    Priority Themes Within Each Grand Challenge

    In addition to the overall Grand Challenge focus on the UN SDGs, each Grand Challenge has its own set of priority themes:

    Grand Challenges Priority Themes

    Global Health

    • Infectious Disease
      (inc. Antimicrobial Resistance)
    • Non-Communicable Diseases
    • Mental Health
    • Migration & Health
    • Health Systems

    Sustainable Cities

    • Future Cities
    • Rethinking Housing
    • Resourcing Cities
    • Transformative Cities
    • Urban Mobility

    Human Wellbeing

    • Achieving Wellbeing & Happiness
    • Adolescent Lives
    • Adolescent Wellbeing
    • Demographic Change
    • Disability
    • Environment

    Cultural Understanding

    • Brexit
    • Cultural Engagement & Health
    • Growing up Multicultural
    • Immigration
    • Dynamics of Globalisation

    Justice & Equality

    • Access & Participation
    • Cultural Heritage & Diversity
    • Environmental Justice
    • Exclusion & Displacement
    • Structural & Relational Inequality

    Transformative Technology

    • Bigger Data, Better Data
    • Disability Innovation
    • Nature-Inspired Engineering
    • Responsible Innovation
    • Waste