The Nahrein Network


Research Grant Awards

The Research Grants Scheme has reopened for a bonus round. We are accepting applications for projects of up to £10,000 (full economic costs).

The awards

These awards support interdisciplinary research on themes relating to one or more of the Nahrein Network's five aims, that encourages the sustainable development of history, humanities and heritage in Iraq, Lebanon and/or Turkey. All funded projects must start after 1 January 2021 and end by 20 June 2021.

Special focus:

During our four rounds of Research Grants Awards, we have funded 19 projects, 18 focused on Iraq. In this bonus round of funding, we will prioritise projects in provinces in Iraq that have been underrepresented so far.

We particularly welcome projects that contribute to the sustainable development of cultural heritage in Anbar, Diyala, Kirkuk, and Salahadeen. 

The projects should meet the Nahrein Network's aims by focusing on:

  • a fuller understanding of the region's social and/or intellectual history and heritage
  • reconciliation between communities through the documentation, safeguarding and enhancement of cultural heritage, broadly defined.

Please note that the Nahrein Network does not fund archaeological fieldwork, architectural projects, or projects that work directly with children, in these provinces or elsewhere.


Applications must be led by an Iraqi, Lebanese or Turkish researcher and do not need UK collaborators. The Principal Investigator (PI) and one or more Co-Investigators (Co-I) must be postdoctoral researchers (or equivalent) who are employed by, or have an official connection with:

  • An Iraqi, Lebanese, Turkish or UK Higher Education Institution (i.e., a university or similar organisation)or
  • A non-academic organisation (e.g. cultural heritage organisation, NGO, community group) in Iraq, Lebanon, Turkey or the UK, with a demonstrated capacity to conduct research.

We may request proof of the applicants’ affiliations.

How to apply

  • Download and read carefully the application form. This contains guidance on what to include in each section and what supporting documents to add to it when sending your proposal. 
  • Projects should start on or after 1 January 2021 and finish no later than 30 June 2021
  • Fill in the form, attach the requested supporting documents and email them to nahrein@ucl.ac.uk
  • All applications must be submitted before the end of day on 15 October 2020.
  • The Nahrein Network aims to inform applicants of all decisios by the end of October 2020.


The selection process

The Nahrein Network team assesses all applications according to the following criteria: 

  • the quality, value and urgency of the proposed research; 
  • the qualifications and experience of the applicant(s) to manage and conduct this research;
  • the feasibility of the proposed management plan, timetable and budget;
  • the viability and suitability of the project's planned outputs, dissemination and publication strategies;
  • the likely long-term sustainability and/or impact of the project;
  • the degree to which the project meets the aims and addresses the themes of the Nahrein Network;  
  • the degree to which the project meets the requirements of the Global Challenges Research Fund in relation to Official Development Assistance compliance (pdf).

Support for funded projects

Each funded project is assigned a liaison officer from the core Network team, who offers mentoring and support. Each project leader is required to provide a short progress report to the Network's Management Committee every 6 months, to ensure that peer support is in place, budgeting is on track, and that project outcomes, network development, and future sustainability are being achieved.

Equal opportunities 

The Nahrein Network is committed to eliminating unlawful discrimination and promoting equality of opportunity and good relations across and between the defined equalities groups in all of their relevant functions. 

Accordingly, no eligible funding applicant or external stakeholder should receive less favourable treatment on the grounds of gender, marital status, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, race, colour, nationality, ethnicity or national origins, religion or similar philosophical belief, spent criminal conviction, age or disability.  

Equally, all proposals will be assessed on equal terms, regardless of the sex, age and/or ethnicity of the applicant. Proposals will, therefore, be assessed and graded on their merits, in accordance with the criteria and the aims and objectives set for each call for funding.