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Financing Climate Research:
A guide for UK researchers and policymakers

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Call: +44 (0)20 7216 6500

Pages: 125 (includes graphics)
Format: A4, perfect bound (PDF for faculty purchases)
Publication date: 15 September 2010
Lead author: John Dwyer
Editor: Barbara Kiser Series Editor: Ehsan Masood

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Financing Climate Research is an in-depth analysis of climate change research strategy and funding. The only one of its kind and the result of extensive research and in-depth interviews, its purpose is to show the opportunities that exist for UK researchers in helping the UK to meet its climate change targets. The report is lead by John Dwyer, comment and analysis editor at Research Fortnight and Research Europe, who's work has appeared in the UK's leading newspapers and industrial magazines for 40 years. Click here for the Chapter Summary

Benefits to readers

• Increase your success rates for climate research funding
• Learn about changing policy landscapes in this sector
Gain insights into case studies of successful and failed applications
• Save time looking for funding opportunities using our extensive list
• Find out who influences policy and how to get in touch


The UK is the first country in the world to have a legally-binding framework to cut long-term carbon emissions. The Climate Change Act of 2008 imposes on the government a duty to lower carbon emissions by 80 per cent of what they were in 1990, and to do this by 2050. Every public, private-sector and non-governmental institution will be affected. The Act’s targets will not be met without the research community. That offers an opportunity for researchers to do cutting-edge science, to attract funds to their institution and to make a difference to climate change. This report will provide insight and analysis on:

• The coalition government’s climate change research strategy
• Issues and questions in climate change that researchers need to address
• The funding opportunities in climate change available to UK researchers
• Case studies of researchers who succeeded in obtaining funds
• Lessons learned from those who failed

Who is this report for?

This report is for UK-based individuals and organisations applying for climate change research funds, and also for those who provide funding for climate change research. They include:

• Research Directors
• Research Managers
• Research Officers
• Senior Academics
• Policymakers
• Advisors
• Principal Investigators
• Pro Vice-Chancellors
• Vice-Chancellors
• Research Councils
• Funding Councils and Charities
• Government
• Chief Scientific Advisers
• Insurance Companies


The report includes a wealth of information exclusively brought together for a comprehensive view of climate change research strategy and funding.

• Financing Climate Research reveals the latest thinking from inside Whitehall on UK climate research strategy, and is the first publication to do so in detail. With this information you can identify and track the individuals and organisations setting policy and strategy. Researchers who know this stand a better chance of success with their grant applications. Policymakers will learn what their colleagues in other departments are saying.
• With a comprehensive list of UK climate-related funding opportunities for 2010/2011, there is no need to spend time trawling different sites. You can see all the opportunities relevant to you in one place.
• A directory of the main funding and networking organizations is included, together with brief profiles on each. Researchers applying for funding need to know the main climate research networks and the contacts responsible for managing them. Policymakers and researchers will find out which are the more influential networks and their sources of funding.
• Interviews with the main climate research funders and donors include key representatives of the UK research councils and the European Commission’s Framework programme, such as Robert Watson, chief scientist at DEFRA, Andrew Watkinson, head of the Living With Environmental Change Programme and Alan Thorpe, chief executive of Research Councils UK. Researchers can read what key decision-makers have to say on the climate research and funding applications that they see and avoid making the most common mistakes.
• Interviews with researchers who have succeeded in winning grants; and with those who failed to do so are covered in detail, demystifying the grant-application process and describing the do’s and don’ts in winning a climate grant. Policymakers will gain valuable feedback from grantees on the highs and lows of winning awards by reading their recommendations into bettering current processes.

Chapter summary

Click here to download the Chapter Summary

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John Dwyer is the lead author for Financing Climate Research and comment and analysis editor for Research Fortnight and Research Europe. His work has appeared in the UK's leading newspapers and industrial magazines for almost 40 years. He edited the Financial Times newsletter on manufacturing technology for five years, was Periodical Publishers' Association Columnist of the Year in 2002.

Barbara Kiser is an editor who works on some of the world’s leading research publications, including Nature and New Scientist. She has also worked on the staff of the international Institute for Environment and Development and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

Ehsan Masood is editor of Research Fortnight and Research Europe and an authority on the relationship between science, environment and development. He is a trustee of Leadership for Environment and Development and teaches international science policy at Imperial College London. His books include Dry: Life Without Water.

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