ESRC are committed to funding social science research relating to climate and environmental change, and have invested over £50 million in recent years. We are now investing £23 million in a series of strategic investments over five years that will build on this research-base.

New research will be funded that covers a broad spectrum of social science relating to climate change. It is expected that successful projects will be social science led but will draw on disciplines from within and beyond the social sciences to produce truly interdisciplinary outcomes that are required for meeting the challenges of climate change. There will be emphasis within the investments on co-design of research with a range of stakeholders, including from industry and policy, and research should consider both the UK and global context. We will also collaborate with other Research Councils in the delivery of the priority, for example in consideration of energy research and clean growth.

The first two investments under the climate change priority will be announced in March 2018:

Climate Change Research Centre

ESRC will be investing £5 million (80% fEC) over five years in a Climate Change Research Centre. The Centre is expected to start in April 2019, and should work collaboratively with the newly commissioned Climate Change Network Plus (see details below). All proposals to this call must be led by a researcher at an eligible UK research organisation and will need to be submitted through the research councils’ Joint Electronic Submission (Je-S). Proposals will need to show 100% fEC of the proposed research. Full guidance on scope, eligibility, closing dates, how to apply to the call and assessment criteria will be published on our website in March 2018. A provisional timetable is shown below.

Provisional timetable

  • Call published - March 2018
  • Deadline for submitting outline proposals - May 2018
  • Start date - April 2019

Please note, that this competition is separate to the ESRC Centres Call, for which the call specification was published in November 2017.

Climate Change Network Plus

ESRC will be investing £3 milion (80% fEC) over five years in a Climate Change Network Plus. The Network is expected to start in January 2019, and should work collaboratively across the suite of investments within the Climate Change priority and beyond. Business engagement will be a key focus area of the network plus. All proposals to this call must be led by a researcher at an eligible UK research organisation and will need to be submitted through the research councils’ Joint Electronic Submission (Je-S).  Proposals will need to show 100% fEC of the proposed research. Full guidance on scope, eligibility, closing dates, how to apply to the call and assessment criteria will be published on our website in March 2018.  A provisional timetable is shown below.

Provisional timetable

  • Call published - March 2018
  • Deadline for submitting proposals (there will be no outline stage) - June 2018
  • Start date - January 2019