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The Newton Fund

The Newton Fund is a UK Government initiative intended to strengthen research and innovation partnerships between the UK and emerging knowledge economies. The Newton Fund was launched in 2014 and originally consisted of £75 million each year for 5 years. In the 2015 UK Spending Review it was agreed to extend and expand the Fund. The Newton Fund was extended from 2019 to 2021 and expanded by doubling the £75 million investment to £150 million by 2021, leading to a £735 million UK investment to 2021, with partner countries providing matched resources within the Fund.

The Fund forms part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment which is monitored by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). ODA funded activity focuses on outcomes that promote the long-term sustainable growth of countries on the OECD Development Assistance Committee list. Newton Fund countries represent a sub-set of this list.

Research Councils UK is one of several UK delivery partners for the Newton Fund and will be working strategically with partner countries to develop a series of research activities to address challenges defined by the overarching ambitions of the Fund. Commitment to the partnership will be further demonstrated by matched resource from partner countries, bringing substantial added value. Additional leverage may be achieved through private foundations, multi-lateral organisations or corporate partners.

For more information on the Newton Fund, please see the Government’s Newton Fund policy paper where you will find details of the fund, UK delivery partners, overseas partner and associated activities.

For information about the Research Councils’ activities under the Newton Fund, please see the RCUK Newton Fund webpage for a list of calls and links to the relevant Research Council website, as well as relevant contact details for each initiative.

The MRC and the Newton Fund

The MRC will be running a number of calls and initiatives over the next 5 years supporting official development assistance. The calls/initiatives will be with a range of Newton Fund partner countries and will include research collaborations and capacity building activities.

Dr Mark Palmer, Director of International Strategy at the MRC, says: “The Newton Fund is an exciting new UK government initiative to promote and advance scientific research in developing countries. The MRC is committed to improving global health, and this can only be achieved through coordinated international collaboration and capacity building initiatives. We look forward to working closely with other delivery partners to maximise the impact of the Newton Fund on the numerous health challenges of developing countries.”

The MRC will also be participating in RCUK activities.

Open initiatives and funding opportunities

There are no initiatives open currently. 

Closed initiatives and funding opportunities

Other Newton Fund opportunities

There are many other partners involved in the delivering of the Newton Fund more information can be found on the BISRCUK or partners' specific websites (these links will be added once available):

For enquiries regarding the Newton Fund please contact:

The MRC International Team
International Strategy Manager