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Sustainable Development 2016 Programme

This programme funds researchers in the humanities and social sciences working on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and generating evidence on the challenges and opportunities faced in developing countries.

Current projects

Programme part of


We foster international collaboration in the humanities and social sciences, and promote the sharing of international perspectives on global challenges.

More about the programme

Funded by the UK’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (through the Global Challenges Research Fund).

This programme funds excellent, policy-oriented research, aimed at addressing the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and advancing the UK’s Aid Strategy. Supported by the Government's £1.5 billion Global Challenges Research Fund, it provides funding to researchers in the humanities and the social sciences working to generate evidence on the challenges and opportunities faced in developing countries.

The first round of this programme, which launched in 2016, funded 16 projects addressing the following thematic areas: sustainable governance, sustainable growth, and sustainable human development.

Programme Outcomes

Beyond increasing the GDP: Overcoming the human, social and economic challenges of promoting sustainable growth

Building on international best practices: Understanding the context-specific challenges of promoting sustainable governance 

Building citizenship to leave no one behind: Improving health, equality and identity to promote sustainable human development

Creating resilience for sustainable development

Overcoming gender inequality for sustainable development

Producing knowledge for the design of effective policies to promote sustainable development

Please contact or call 020 7969 5220 for further information.

Related funding opportunities

Global Professorships

This new programme is supported under the UK Government’s National Productivity Investment Fund. It aims to demonstrate and further enhance the UK’s commitment to international research partnerships and collaboration as well as strengthen the UK’s research capacity and capability in the humanities and the social sciences.

The Humanities and Social Sciences Tackling the UK's International Challenges

The British Academy is inviting proposals from UK-based researchers in the humanities and social sciences to develop interdisciplinary projects which bear on our understanding of the UK’s international challenges and opportunities (past, present and future). Proposals will relate to the themes of Conflict, Stability & Security; Europe’s Futures; Justice, Rights & Equality; and Urban Futures.