Science environnementale

A French Embassy UK-British Council France joined-up initiative

Building on the success of the Seed meetings organised by the French Embassy in London, and of the joint research Hubert Curien Alliance Programme, the British Council in France and the French Embassy in the UK have jointly decided to launch a new programme in order to amplify existing scientific collaborations between French and British labs. The Springboard Programme for a Sustainable Future is an upscaling and upskilling programme for French and British researchers working together in the field of climate change.

While the Seed meetings are targeted to bring together researchers at the start of their collaborations, the Springboard Programme will aim at strengthening existing collaborations between the UK and France and to facilitate mobility between groups of researchers with a view to lead to joint grant applications (especially with Horizon Europe), joint publications, patent filing and technology transfer.

What does the programme entail?

The Springboard Programme includes:

  •  a springboard meeting between the French and UK team members already collaborating, designed to: 

  -        enrich the project with expertise from other countries or the private sector

  -        prepare applications to large national, European or international funds

  • an online communication skills training for the early career researchers who are part of the team;
  • travel and accommodation for research placements in the partner’s lab for PhDs and postdocs involved in the programme.

Meetings will be held either at the Higher Education, Research and Innovation Department of the French Embassy in London or at the British Council in Paris. Meetings which include Scottish universities and French partners can be held at the Institut Français d’Ecosse in Edinburgh if needed.

What will be funded?

  • Travel and subsistence during a two-day springboard meeting for all team members (up to 10 people)
  • Travel and accommodation for up to 2 French and 2 UK early career researchers (PhDs or postdocs) for specific lab placements (for up to two weeks).
  • Participation in communication skills training modules for early career researchers involved in the project
  • Advice and support from an EU funding consultant during the meeting

Who can apply?

Research team directors of established labs having proven track-records in research in France and the UK who already work together on a joint research project can jointly apply.

Each application can include up to 10 participants.

Partners based in other EU countries or the private sector can be added to the project.

Applicants will be able to request a grant contribution for tackling barriers to diversity and inclusion. Examples of costs that can be covered include  but  are  not  limited  to additional  childcare  costs,  measures  to  support  the  participation  of  researchers  and team members with disabilities. Lead applicants are asked to also consider encouraging participation from researchers from under-represented groups in the teams implementing their proposed activities.

Which fields will be considered?

Only applications from cross-cutting themes in the two following Horizon Europe strategic orientations will be taken into consideration:

·         Restoring Europe’s ecosystems and biodiversity, and managing sustainably natural resources

·         Making Europe the first digitally-enabled circular, climate-neutral and sustainable economy

It includes projects in the following fields:

·         Climate, Energy and Mobility (Cluster 5)

 ·         Food, Bioeconomy, Natural Resources, Agriculture and Environment (Cluster 6)

All disciplines are welcome (medicine, biology, social sciences, arts and humanities, physics, chemistry, environmental sciences …). Priority will be given to multidisciplinary proposals.

This call is especially intended for teams wishing to prepare applications for European and international funding (e.g. Horizon Europe).

How to apply?

The deadline for submissions for projects in 2022 is now closed.

The submitted proposals will usually include:

  • names and affiliations of the researchers involved in the project (researchers from the same institution/laboratory must have complementary skills);
  • description of the research project and skills of the various institutions/laboratories involved (with an emphasis on existing synergies and previous collaboration);
  • brief description of existing links between the researchers involved (joint papers; joint PhD between labs; evidence of national funding);
  • a specification of the types/sources of funding (e.g. UKRI, ANR international funding, Horizon Europe…) you intend to apply for as a follow up from this meeting.

All submitted proposals are evaluated for their scientific quality and relevance.