British Academy announces Sustainable Development Programme awards

1 Dec 2016

The British Academy today (1 December) announces funding for major research projects which will further sustainable development and work to eliminate poverty.

The 16 grants awarded as part of the British Academy Sustainable Development Programme fund interdisciplinary, policy-focused research which addresses the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The projects will help advance the UK’s Aid Strategy by informing policies and interventions to improve people’s lives in fragile, conflict-affected states, or in developing countries.

The projects focus on sustainable governance, sustainable growth, and human development.  Research projects include:

  • Investigating the effect of hosting 1.3m Syrian refugees on society, the labour market and access to public services in Jordan. (Professor Jackline Wahba, University of Southampton)

  • Examining the socio-political conditions that prevent access to affordable, reliable, sustainable energy in Mozambique. (Dr Vanessa Castan Broto, University College London)

  • Transforming infrastructure and practice to prevent the contamination of drinking water by sewage in the slums of Dar-es-Salaam and Dhaka. (Dr Manoj Roy, University of Lancaster).

The grants will fund projects from 1 December 2016 to 31 March 2018 as part of the government’s £1.5bn Global Challenges Research Fund.

Professor Ash Amin, Foreign Secretary and Vice President of the British Academy said,

“The UK government has committed to eliminating extreme poverty by 2030, yet our current understanding of what works is limited. The humanities and social sciences play a vital role in filling this gap. By bringing together researchers from a range of disciplines, the British Academy Sustainable Development Programme combines outstanding research with real-world impact, providing evidence for interventions that can improve the lives of developing communities across the globe.”

Professor Sir Richard Jolly, former Assistant Secretary-General of the UN and panel member for the Sustainable Development Programme said,

“The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) form the new global agenda, approved by all 193 countries of the UN and directed to reductions of poverty, inequality, building peaceful more inclusive societies and much more. Each of the British Academy Sustainable Development Programme research projects has been selected to enhance understanding of how practical development actions contribute to the SDGs. Taken together, they represent a major UK contribution to the global effort to implement the SDGs.” 

View a list of the 2016 award holders here.

Notes to editors

1. The British Academy for the humanities and social sciences. Established by Royal Charter in 1902. Its purpose is to inspire and support high achievement in the humanities and social sciences throughout the UK and internationally, and to promote their public value. For more information, please visit
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