UCL Grand Challenges


Climate Crisis Small Grants Call 2024-2025

The new Grand Challenge of Climate Crisis is offering awards of up to £10,000 to support novel cross-disciplinary collaborations that address the climate crisis.

Grand Challenge of Climate Crisis

6 June 2024

Deadline for Applications

Deadline for applications: Wednesday, 17 July 2024, 17.30 (GMT).

Call Description

The new Climate Crisis Grand Challenge (GCCC) at UCL is offering small grants of up to £10,000 for research-informed, societally relevant, cross-disciplinary projects that address the climate crisis. These grants aim to foster grass-roots cooperation between different parts of UCL, leveraging the university’s diversity to gain novel insights and impacts within the research community and wider society.

This call aims to support the UCL community to make new links, test out new ideas and try out novel approaches. We are looking for collaborations that combine the viewpoints and approaches from different experts at UCL to come up with new ways of approaching the challenges presented by the climate crisis.

This is an open call; you can address any aspect of the climate crisis and there is no restriction on the number and type of output your project can produce.

Previous small grants funding has resulted in a wide range of outputs, including grant applications, published papers, new teaching material and courses, public events and exhibitions and new or enhanced collaborations. These collaborations have included different parts of UCL, other universities, businesses, charities, policy makers and community groups, among others.

Cross-Disciplinary Approach

Grand Challenges supports collaborations that cross disciplinary boundaries, and we strongly encourage applications from teams that combine expertise across UCL.
Applications within a single department, faculty or centre will not be funded without a strong justification for how this represents cross-disciplinary collaboration.

We look for proposals from staff in different academic faculties or between staff in a faculty and staff in Professional Services (our own research user community). The aim is to leverage UCL's diversity to gain novel insights, and impacts, both within the research community and in wider society.

2024-25 Call Outline

  • Awards of up to £10,000 available for research-informed, societally relevant, cross-disciplinary collaborations
  • Deadline for applications: Wednesday, 17 July 2024, 5.30pm
  • We expect to make 15 awards
  • Proposals must have a strong relevance to the Climate Crisis
  • We support collaborations across UCL faculties or between researchers and UCL Professional Services staff
  • All project costs must be claimed and paid for by 31 July 2025
  • All applications must include two applicants from UCL, and any number of additional collaborators
  • Applicants who have a UCL Profile should ensure that it is fully completed and up to date
Full Eligibility Criteria
  1. Proposals must have a strong relevance to the Climate Crisis.
  2. Eligible collaborations must include a First and Second applicant.
  3. The First applicant must be a UCL member of staff (academic or professional services)
  4. The First Applicant's status and period of employment at UCL must enable him or her to receive funding from the Grand Challenges that can be administered by their department
  5. The Second Applicant should represent expertise from a different area of UCL—It is strongly recommended that the second applicant comes from a different academic faculty or professional services office than the First Applicant. . Applications that only involve one UCL department/faculty are extremely unlikely to receive funding and must justify how they meet cross-disciplinary remit of the call.
  6. You are encouraged to include relevant additional collaborators. There is no limit to the number of additional collaborators.
    1. UCL staff (Academic or Professional Services)
    2. Students (undergraduate or postgraduate) (for example, with UCL’s Co-Production Collective with whom GC works to support)
    3. Academic staff at another university in the UK or overseas (for example the University of Lincoln with whom UCL is building a strategic relationship through Grand Challenges)
    4. External partners drawn from third sector organisations (e.g. community-based organisations), policy think tanks, industry, or business
    5. Staff of a non-academic organisation in the UK or overseas
  7. Research assistant employment costs are admissible, but contributions towards salary costs for contracted UCL staff members are not.
    This typically means that salary costs for the first and second applicants, who must be UCL staff, cannot be covered.
  8. All the costs associated with the proposal must be paid by 31 July 2025.
  9. We do not offer detailed individual feedback on unsuccessful applications.
  10. Successful applicants will be expected to submit a brief report of all expenditures alongside an Impact Report in November 2025.
  11. Successful applicants will be expected to acknowledge the support that they have received from Grand Challenges in promotional materials related to the supported activities, and in attributable publications.
  12. If you have a UCL profile, you should ensure it is fully completed and up to date


How to apply

  1. Read the call guidance - 
  2. Download the application form - 
  3. Upload the completed application form using this online form

If you have any further questions, please contact Huda Ahmed, Coordinator for the Climate Crisis Grand Challenge in the Grand Challenges team.


See related funded projects

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