31 March 2022 | Bryony Parker

Your weekly digest of policy news, funding competitions, and calls for evidence.

What’s been in the news?

UNEP joins group tackling global health issues

The One Health partnership, which brings together the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), has now been joined by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). A Memorandum of Understanding says that UNEP ‘sets the environmental agenda and promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the UN system, and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment.’

The four organisations will be focused on the One Health Joint Plan of Action, which comprises ‘six main action tracks.’ These tracks include: reducing the risks from emerging or resurfacing zoonotic epidemics and pandemics; controlling and eliminating endemic zoonotic, neglected tropical or vector-borne diseases; and curbing the silent pandemic of antimicrobial resistance (AMR).

For more information on this topic, please visit the full article on our website.

PoliSCI - 31 March 2022 - Global Health Issues - image of a stethoscope and glass globe

UK and Canada negotiate modernised trade deal

The UK and Canada have launched trade talks which are aimed at strengthening a trading relationship said to be worth more than £19 billion during 2020. The new Free Trade Agreement, which will build on the benefits of the UK-Canada Trade Continuity Agreement, will cover areas such as innovation, digital, data, the environment and women’s economic empowerment. The UK is Canada’s third largest trading partner and, it is estimated that Canadian demand for imports is set to grow by 45% by 2035.

The partners say, as an example, that the adoption of digital trading systems could make trade cheaper, faster and more secure for businesses. The Government says that this could see more than 10 000 UK SMEs benefiting from lower barriers to trade.

The UK Government says that benefits of a new UK-Canada Free Trade Agreement could include: A boost the UK’s service sector; stimulating more Canadian investment in the UK; helping women access the full benefits of trade, providing the potential to scale up businesses at the same rate as men; and enhancing cooperation on tackling climate change.

For more information on this topic, please visit the full article on our website.

PoliSCI - 31 March 2022 - Canada UK Trade Deal Talks - image of Canadian and UK flags on a board table

New scientific board provides advice on EU climate measures

The European Environment Agency (EEA) has appointed 15 independent senior scientific experts to a new European Scientific Advisory Board on Climate Change. The Advisory Board will provide independent scientific advice on European Union measures and climate targets and their coherence with the European Climate Law and the EU’s international commitments under the Paris Agreement.

The Advisory Board will build on the best available and most recent scientific evidence, including the latest reports of the IPCC and other national and international bodies. Members of the new Advisory Board include Maarten van Aalst, University of Twente, The Netherlands; Suraje Dessai, University of Leeds, UK; Laura Díaz Anadón, University of Cambridge, UK; Elena López-Gunn, ICATALIST, Spain; and Lars J.Nilsson, Lund University, Sweden.

The EEA said that the members of the Advisory Board are appointed in a personal capacity for a term of four years, renewable once. They give their positions completely independently of the EU Member States and the EU institutions. The appointed members were selected from the 79 applications received during the call for expressions of interest. The setting up of the Advisory Board comes under the European Climate Law, adopted in June 2021, which sets out the binding objective of climate neutrality in the EU by 2050. New scientific board provides advice on EU climate measures.

For more information on this topic, please visit the full article on our website.

PoliSCI - 31 March 2022 - EU Climate Change Advisory Board - Graphic of EU flag and smoke stags

Calls for evidence 

UK trade negotiations
Submissions are welcomed on UK trade negotiations with the EU including views on the objectives of the Department for International Trade for Free Trade Agreement negotiations.

Deadline: Open for submissions

Further information can be found on the UK Parliament website.

Funding competitions

Horizon Europe
To find more on eligibility for Horizon Europe funding for your sector, you can view the national contact points on the Government website as well as search for the European Funding and Tenders.

Further information on the UK’s association to Horizon Europe is available in the UK participation in Horizon Europe document.

Further information on the SME and start-up fund can be found on the European Commission website.


Innovate UK Smart Grants: January 2022
UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £35 million for game-changing R&D innovation that will impact the UK economy. Projects must start by 1 October 2022 and last between 6 and 36 months.

Deadline: 13 April 2022


UK-Singapore Collaborative R&D
UK registered businesses can apply for a share of up to £3 million for developing innovative proposals with Singapore. Projects must start by September 2022 and last between 24 and 36 months.

Deadline: 20 April 2022


Driving the Electric Revolution: Building Talent for the Future 2
UK registered organisations can apply for a share of up to £4.5 million for innovative skills, talent and training projects for Power Electronics, Motors and Drives (PEMD). Projects must have a total cost of no more than £50,000 and start by 1 October 2022.

Deadline: 27 April 2022


Biomedical Catalyst 2022 Round 1: Industry-led R&D
UK registered SMEs can apply for up to £15 million to develop innovative solutions to health and healthcare challenges. Total project costs must be between £150 and £4 million.

Deadline: 25 May 2022


Innovation in time resilience, dissemination and application – feasibility
UK registered organisations can apply for up to £4.7 million for business led innovation. Projects must have a total cost between £50,000 and £250,000.

Deadline: 1 June 2022

You can find further details of the funding calls on the Government website.

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