UKRO and H2020 is now Launched!!

Hurrah!! At last all of the next Horizon 2020 proposals have been released. Following a great UKRO session yesterday with Eevi from the Brussels office (see pic below) the External Projects Team hosted a great day long programme of presentations on Erasmus + and the H2020 calls. We have been anticipating the launch which happened yesterday and we are now in the process of producing briefing sheets to help you to digest all of the information, but in the meantime you can access all of the latest info from the Commission HERE

2013-12-11 14.07.39

NESTA – Impact Investments

NESTA the innovation funder has a number of open funding opportunities. One of these is the Impact Investment Awards. They aim to bring about positive outcomes for people, communities and society as a whole, as well as providing financial returns for investors.

Impact investment is needed to fund the creation of new innovations and to support their testing and development. It also allows the best ones to scale up and change the world. This is as true of innovation that seek to achieve social impact as it is of those motivated by creating financial value.

In particular, NESTA are seeking innovations that have a positive impact on:

  • the health and wellbeing of an ageing population;
  • the educational attainment and employability of children and young people; and
  • the social and environmental sustainability of communities.
This is a open call and has a rolling deadline. To find out more please visit the WEBLINK

ESRC: Empathy and Trust In Communicating Online (EMoTICON) Sandpit

6-10 January 2014 (Cranage Hall, Cheshire)

The Economic and Social Research Council invites expressions of interest from eligible individuals for an intensive, five-day interactive commissioning workshop (sandpit) from 6-10 January 2014, being held at Cranage Hall in Cheshire.

ESRC, in partnership with AHRC, EPSRC, Dstl and CPNI, is commissioning new research to develop a greater understanding of how empathy and trust are developed, maintained, transformed and lost in social media interactions.

In order to develop innovative approaches and stimulate genuinely transdisciplinary collaborations, the ESRC is commissioning projects via a sandpit. The aim of the sandpit is to bring together researchers and other partners to create projects that will develop theoretically-informed and empirically-derived understandings of the workings of empathy and trust in online contexts and communities.

This call is intended to attract participants from across the full range of social sciences, arts and humanities, and engineering and physical sciences. The ESRC is particularly looking for people with particular personal attributes – creativity, openness, and the ability to work effectively as part of a team. A willingness to engage with policymakers, community organisations, government agencies, businesses and other key stakeholders is also essential.

Full-time and part-time scholars at UK-based research organisations (ROs) can apply. A mix of researchers at different career stages is also sought. The sandpit is aimed at early- and mid-career researchers as well as those in senior academic posts. We regret that, on this occasion, PhD students and scholars based overseas are not eligible to participate in the sandpit.

The sandpit is an intensive residential event and participants must attend all five days of the event. By submitting an application form, you are confirming that you are available for the full five days of the sandpit.

The closing date for expressions of interest is 11.00 on 11 November 2013. Applications from interested candidates should be submitted via the electronic application form.

Further Information

For further information, please contact:

EU Prize for Women Innovators 2014


The European Commission has launched the second edition of the EU Prize for Women Innovators. The competition is open until 15th October 2013 and aims to raise public awareness about the need for more innovation and more women innovators. It will reward three women who have developed outstanding innovations and brought them to market, with prizes ranging from €25,000 to €100,000.

Any woman innovator complying with the following criteria can apply:

  • Resides in an EU Member State or in a country associated to the Research Framework Programme.
  • Is a founder or co-founder of an existing and active company.
  • Your company must have been registered before 1st January 2011.
  • The annual turnover of the company must have been a minimum €100,000 in 2011 or 2012.
  • Either you or the company you founded/co-founded have received or is receiving funding from the European Union or the European Atomic Energy Community Research Framework Programme, or from the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP).

If you would like to participate, please got to the contest website before the 15th October 2013.

NESTA – Digital makers fund

Image of Digital Makers homepage


The digital makers fund is about getting 1000’s of young people involved in making digital activities. Something we seem pretty well placed to do as a university.

 NESTA expect successful initiatives will use young people’s existing interests, passions and pastimes as a gateway to digital making, inspiring young people to become creators, not just users of digital technologies. NESTA are looking for applications from organisations, or partnerships between organisations, that have the capacity to engage thousands of young people in digital making activities.

Further details:

  • Use different interests and content to reach new audiences – how can digital making tie in with music, fashion, sport, film or brands that will inspire young people to participate?
  • The ‘making’ element is important. NESTA want ideas that lead participants to the creation of a digital product that they can show to and share with others.
  • NESTA are interested in reaching different networks and communities for learning – youth clubs, libraries, after school clubs, interest groups and social networks speak to thousands of young people every day. How can they integrate digital making into their activities?

NESTA take a broad view of digital making that encompasses 3D printing and physical computing, as well as coding and programming, and want to work with partners who are noisy advocates for the importance of digital making; who will use all the channels available to them to shout about and promote their projects.

Deadline: 14 November 2013

Grants between £20,000 and £50,000

Creative Europe Programme 2014-2020

Creative Europe: support programme for Europe’s cultural and creative sectors from 2014

Culture Programme

Following a recent seminar attended by the External Projects Team here is an outline of the new Creative Europe Programmme

Calls will be issued in late 2013, with deadlines in early 2014; there is a networking event in Brussels November 4th-6th 2013, with the opportunity to present project ideas and meet potential partners.

The new Creative Europe programme brings together 3 current programmes (Culture – MEDIA – MEDIA Mundus) 

Specific Culture Objectives are to

  • Strengthen the sectors’ capacity to operate transnationally;
  • Promote the transnational circulation of works and operators and reach new audiences in Europe and beyond
  • Strengthen the sectors’ financial capacity
  • Strengthen policy making

 ‘Creative Europe’ – Culture Strands will cover

  • Transnational cooperation projects
  • European networks
  • Literary translation
  • European “platforms” with a structuring effect

For the Creative and Cultural Sectors – the proposed budget of €1,462.7 million for 2014-2020 is a 9% increase on current levels, with a new financial facility for bank loans to the sector – funding is based on 50% match funding.

For a free monthly newsletter with updated information on the Creative Europe Programme –  register via 

If you are interested in this programme – please contact the team

Design in innovation: research development funding

The AHRC is very interested in design innovation at the moment. This fund looks is particularly interesting because it supports speculative research.

Funding Body: AHRC

Scheme: Design in innovation: research development funding

Overview: This call is aimed at enabling groups of researchers, including academics, design practitioners, businesses and any other relevant non-academic organisations or individuals, to hold exploratory workshops, networking and collaborative activities, or conduct original research reviews, scoping studies or capacity building activities focusing on design in innovation.

The following areas were identified as being in particular need of academic investigation:

•the role of design in service innovation;

•the role of design in the innovation ecosystem;

•providing evidence of the impact of design.

Awards should last for a maximum of six months and should be completed by the end of October 2014.

Budget: Funding of up to £50,000 is available on full economic costs basis with the AHRC meeting 80% of the FEC

Deadlines: 31 October 2013

Further Information:


EU Call for Tender – Study on ‘ICT & Art Connect’

The European Commission, Directorate General Communications Networks, has published a call for tenders regarding a study on ‘ICT & art connect’, with a closing date of August 27th 2013.

The study will create a map of institutions and ongoing programmes/activities linking ICT and the arts in Europe and worldwide. It will analyse best practice to enhance interaction between artists and IT experts and to increase the impact of these interactions on innovation and creativity.

From this analysis, recommendations will be drawn for a DG Connect strategy to engage more broadly with the arts in Horizon 2020. The aim is to contribute to enhancing creativity and innovation in society, technology, science, education, and business; and to better embed science and technology in society.The following 4 objectives should be addressed:

1) Provide an overview of European and worldwide activities linking art and ICT in research, education, and innovation.

2) Take stock and analyse best practices in Europe and worldwide for linking art and ICT and thereby enhancing creativity and innovation.

3) A list of recommendations for a DG Connect strategy on how to best engage in H2020 with the arts will be presented and based on the analysis in first objective and second one.

4) The contractor will organise a final 2-day symposium on ‘ICT & art connect’. This event should bring together artists, technologists, scientists and representatives of relevant institutions and funding bodies identified in the study.

Further details:


European Union prize for cultural heritage/Europa Nostra awards

           europa nostra internationaal     European Union Culture logo

Europa Nostra supported by the European Commission invites applications for the European Union prize for cultural heritage/Europa Nostra awards. These are granted to identify and promote best practices in the conservation of tangible cultural heritage, to stimulate the trans-frontier exchanges of knowledge and experience throughout Europe, to enhance public awareness and appreciation of Europe’s cultural heritage and to encourage further initiatives through the power of example.

Four categories are available:

  • conservation for outstanding achievements in the conservation, enhancement and adaptation to new uses of cultural heritage;
  • research for outstanding research leading to tangible effects in the conservation and enhancement of cultural heritage in Europe;
  • dedicated services by individuals or organisations for the protection, conservation and enhancement of cultural heritage;
  • education, training and awareness-raising initiatives

Entries may be submitted from all European countries. However, only entries from countries that take part in the culture programme of the European Commission are eligible for a monetary award.

Up to six entries will be awarded a grand prix including a monetary award of €10,000, while up to 25 entries will receive an award.

Closing date 09 Sep 13

For further information go to

Funding focusing on Research combining Design and Innovation

The Arts and Humanities Research Council have decided to focus a chunk of their funding on design. They are particularity interested in projects which link design and innovation. This sounds like something Staffordshire University are very good at (Flux, High House), so we should be looking to get a bid in.

They want applications to be in by 3 October 2013. We can only submit a maximum of three bids, and in truth we should really be looking to submit only one, so anyone looking to apply should talk to the External Projects Team and the head of their faculty.

More details here: