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Birkbeck College London 5 November 2010 The Wellcome Trust.

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Presentation on theme: "Birkbeck College London 5 November 2010 The Wellcome Trust."— Presentation transcript:

1 Birkbeck College London 5 November 2010 The Wellcome Trust

2 an independent research- funding charity. established funded from private endowment. interests range from science to history of medicine to public engagement. Grant spend 2009/10: c£550m The Wellcome Trust

3 Our Strategy


5 Strategic Plan One vision Three focus areas Five challenges

6 Our new vision and mission Our vision is to achieve extraordinary improvements in human and animal health Our mission is to support the brightest minds in biomedical research and the medical humanities Our breadth of support includes public engagement, education and the application of research to improve health

7 Three focus areas… Supporting outstanding researchers supporting the best researchers at all stages of their careers; creating the best research environments; influencing the policy landscape Accelerating the application of research stimulating Technology Transfer, clinical research and uptake to policy & practice Exploring medicine in historical and cultural contexts fostering medical humanities, education & public engagement

8 Five major challenges… Maximising the health benefits of genetics and genomics Understanding the brain Combating infectious diseases Investigating development, ageing & chronic disease Connecting environment, nutrition and health

9 Maximising the health benefits of genetics and genomics understanding how genomic variation affects disease unravelling the interplay of genetics, environment and lifestyle in disease investigating gene function managing data and informatics developing new health products, devices and technologies examining the ethical and social questions raised by genetics ensuring that appropriate governance is applied to research

10 Understanding the brain characterising neural networks integrating research efforts at the interface between basic and clinical neuroscience gaining new insights into mental health disorders fostering technology development and innovation integrating humanities, arts and social science perspectives promoting public dialogue and debate

11 Combating infectious disease understanding the burden of disease investigating pathogen emergence and transmission characterising mechanisms of pathogenesis and host response understanding the effects of co- infection and disease interactions developing better tools, products and devices exploring the social context of infectious disease control accelerating uptake of interventions into policy and practice

12 Investigating development, ageing and chronic disease characterising physiological processes in health and disease understanding chronic disease at individual and population levels developing skills and resources and new technologies supporting research to inform effective delivery of health innovations examining the societal context of research and healthcare provision & engaging the public on these questions influencing policy and practice

13 Connecting environment, nutrition and health addressing global malnutrition and obesity investigating the health impacts of climate change examining ecological public health understanding lifestyle choices and behaviour change evaluating interventions & informing policy and practice stimulating global dialogue and examining ethical, social and cultural contexts

14 How we fund ….simply put, the best way to administer a creative research environment is to find people of great talent and reasonable ambition – whatever their specific disciplines – and leave them to their own devices Joshua Lederberg, The Scientist, 1991 Generous, flexible and long-term support for the best people

15 Implementing the Strategic Plan: Funding for Biomedical Science Investigator Awards replacing project, programme, equipment, resources, technology development, flexible travel awards Fellowships Clinical, Basic & Tropical Training, Intermediate & Senior Strategic Awards Themed Initiatives Translation Awards

16 Investigator Awards

17 Long-term support for world-class researchers with the vision to innovate, take risks and explore the most challenging questions in their field of study. Long term funding: greater impact alleviate renewal burden/distraction Well resourced: enable researchers to realise their vision. Flexible spend: follow research where it leads: innovate and take risks People focus Interview stage

18 Investigator Awards New Investigator Awards: To support world-class researchers who are no more than five years from appointment to their first established academic position and can demonstrate the ability to innovate and drive advances in their field of study. Senior Investigator Awards: To support exceptional world-class researchers in established academic position who are working at the forefront of their field and have a compelling long-term vision for their research. Aimed at best and brightest researchers in established positions at all career stages

19 Applicants Predominantly single applicant Two joint applicants possible: shared vision Large-scale multi-applicant collaborations supported through Strategic Awards UK, and low or middle income countries, and Major Overseas Programmes (MOPS) eligible

20 Internationally competitive research programmesBroader aims - flexibilityPrincipal Applicant needs proventrack record of research and fundingSalaries for 3-4 posts, plus equipment, travel and materials, for five years. Awards typically in the region of £750k-£1.5mInternationally competitive research programmesBroader aims - flexibilityPrincipal Applicant needs proventrack record of research and fundingSalaries for 3-4 posts, plus equipment, travel and materials, for five years. Awards typically in the region of £750k-£1.5m What can you ask for on Investigator Awards? £100k - £425k per year for up to 7 years direct costs of research not own salary costs no proportion of FECs ie: no change to policy Costs awarded to be finalised after the decision is made and will depend on scientific needs of proposed research

21 (Optional) CV details check Main application submission Expert Review Group Scientific review & short-listing External peer review Selection Panel Interviews Assessment Process Assessment Criteria - The track record and standing of the candidate - The quality and importance of the research question. -The approach to solving these questions. - The suitability of research environment - How the proposed research addresses our Strategic Challenges.

22 Expert Review Groups Short-list Investigator Award applications for interview by the Selection Panels. 9 ERGs based around scientific streams/disciplines. ERGs map to Challenges. In future, short-listing of Fellowship applications for the Fellowship interview Committees.

23 Selection Panels Interview candidates for New Investigator and Senior Investigator Awards shortlisted by the Expert Review Groups. Multi-disciplinary core membership, supplemented by ERG members and co-opted experts Sessions aligned with Challenges plus Tropical Medicine & Public Health

24 Timetable 30 th July 2010: Final closing date for full project and programme grant applications. 1 st Oct 2010: Applications for Investigator Awards can be submitted. 22 nd Nov 2010: Closing date for the first round of Investigator Award applications. March 2011: Final Funding Round for project and programme grant applications. May 2011: First Investigator Awards made.

25 Fellowships

26 Investigator awards and Fellowships Senior Investigator awards New Investigator awards

27 Personal Support Schemes – Biomedical Scientists Sir Henry Wellcome Postdoctoral Fellowships For the best newly qualified post-doctoral basic science researchers with no more than 1 year of postdoctoral research. Annual competition. Research Career Development Fellowships Successful postdoctoral scientists with 3-6 years post-doctoral research experience. Considered twice a year. Senior Research Fellowships For outstanding individuals of exceptional ability (with 5-10 years post-doc experience) to continue their independent programmes of research. Annual competition.

28 Research Training Fellowships For medical, dental and veterinary graduates with little or no research experience, to pursue training in a high quality research lab towards a PhD or MD. Considered three times a year. Intermediate Clinical Fellowships For clinicians who have had an outstanding start to their research career to continue research at postdoctoral level and maintain a clinical career. Considered twice a year. Senior Research Fellowships For outstanding clinical investigators to further develop their research potential and to establish themselves as leading investigators in clinical academic medicine. Annual competition.. Personal Support Schemes – Clinical Scientists

29 Basic & Clinical PhD Studentship Programmes. Research Career Re-entry Fellowships. Separate Career Pathway Schemes exist for researchers in Veterinary Medicine & Tropical Medicine. Other Personal Support schemes

30 Strategic Awards

31 ambitious initiatives across the breadth of the Wellcome Trust's interests highly flexible and responsive to emerging opportunities partnership with host institution recent examples: testing a new TB vaccine candidate London Pain Consortium Structural Genomics Consortium Public Health Foundation of India Biomedical Engineering Strategic awards

32 Strategic Awards Awards are normally for five years and can provide funds for: equipment support staff consumables training programmes networking biological, clinical or epidemiological research resources. Preliminary applications for Strategic Awards may be submitted at any time and are assessed on a rolling basis. Contact the Trust to discuss.

33 For more information visit our website:

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