Funding Opportunity: Newton Colombia call

The UK’s Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) jointly with the Colombian Administrative Department of Science Technology and Innovation – Colciencias expect to issue a joint call for research proposals in Spring 2017. In preparation for the call, NERC and AHRC are inviting expressions of interest for eligible UK researchers to attend a two-day workshop on 22-23 February 2017 in Colombia to explore UK-Colombian opportunities for collaboration.

Full information on the workshop and background information is available here.  

The aim of the workshop is to facilitate new collaborative working relationships between UK environmental and arts/humanities researchers and Colombian researchers, and to inform researchers about the scope of the call and the evidence needs of the supporting Colombian departments (regions). 

The call will focus on exploring the Colombian biodiversity in different ecosystems, understanding its functional role in ecosystem services, the benefits derived by humans, and resilience in order to develop regional management plans and other inputs for decision-making.  Research will inform and support the socially inclusive sustainable management of ecosystems and biological resources, recognising the value of traditional knowledge, historical perspectives, cultural values and heritage as a way to stimulate community engagement, particularly in post conflict territories.  Participating Colombian departments (regions) will be confirmed in the call, but are likely to include Cundinamarca; Nariño (Tumaco); Boyacá; Risaralda; San Andres and Bolivar. 

Anticipated environmental research skills would be those in biodiversity; ecosystem functioning and services; environmental omics; landscape modelling; and Earth Observation; with applications relevant to coastal marine, upland, tropical dry-forest, wet forest  and agri-environment, agro-biodiversity and soil systems. Perspectives from the arts and humanities may include the environmental humanities; livelihoods, social and economic alternatives for the sustainable use of biodiversity in post-conflict scenario; community engagement with environmental issues; the role of the history of a region in understanding its human/nature relationships; how language, culture, ethics, faith and belief contribute to the understanding of biodiversity and the roles people play within ecosystems (traditional knowledge) and the unsustainable use of biodiversity and natural capital in the eyes of violence and peace construction.

It is hoped that these research collaborations will work together to apply for the UK-Colombian call for proposals which is expected to launch in Spring 2017. Through this call, NERC and AHRC are intending to provide approximately £6 million to support the UK side of joint research projects in these topic areas. It is not a requirement to attend the workshop to be able to apply to the call for funding.