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Research Councils UK is a strategic partnership set up to champion science, engineering and technology supported by the seven UK Research Councils.
Government departments & public bodies
Non-Governmental Organisations, foundations and trusts
Professional bodies
Learned societies & academies
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Government Departments & Public Bodies

The UK government funds research through its departments, the research councils, the higher education sector and its non-departmental organisations. All these offer a wide range of funding opportunities in all areas of research. Through its agencies, the UK government also makes contributions to multinational sources of funding to support international research and cooperation.

Government Departments

Department for Innovation, Universities and Schools (DIUS)
Is the UK Government department responsible for colleges, universities, investment in research, science and skill at all levels
Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR)
Is the UK Government department responsible for promoting competitiveness and business success. Its responsibilities include enterprise, business relations, regional development, fair markets and energy policy)
Ministry of Defence (MOD)
The purpose of the Ministry of Defence (MoD) and the Armed Forces, is to defend the United Kingdom. The department provides resources to its various research establishments and it coordinates policy on research and capital programmes concerning its research and development.
Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCFS)
Is the UK Government department responsible for children’s services and education in England.
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)
Is the UK Government department responsible for securing a healthy, resilient, productive and diverse natural environment. Its responsibilities include animal health and welfare, exports and trade; farming; fisheries; food and drink; sustainable development; wildlife and countryside issues and an array of veterinary licensing.
Department of Health (DH)
Is the UK Government department responsible for the health and well-being of people in England.
National Health Service (NHS)
Is the publicly funded healthcare system for England. There are separate heath services funded by the devolved administrations in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Department for Transport (DfT)
Is the UK Government department responsible for building transport infrastructure systems to tackle congestion, improve accessibility, reduce casualties, respect the environment and support the economy.
Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG)
Is the UK Government department responsible for promoting community cohesion and equality. It is also has responsibility for housing, urban regeneration, planning and local government.
Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS)
Is the UK Government department responsible for improving the quality of life for all, through cultural and sporting activities; support the pursuit of excellence; and champion the tourism, creative and leisure industries.
Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO)
Is the UK Government department responsible for promoting the interests of the United Kingdom around the world. It has an overseas network of Science and Innovation attachés in support of the Government’s innovation agenda.

Funding Councils

Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE)
Is the council responsible for distributing public money for teaching, research and related activities to universities and colleges that provide higher education in England.
Higher Education Researcher Organisation (HERO)
Is the official online gateway to higher education and research in the UK. It includes information on higher education institutions, universities and colleges and the latest university news
Scottish Funding Council (SFC)
Is the council responsible for distributing funding for teaching and learning, research and other activities in Scotland’s colleges and universities.
Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW)
Is the council responsible for funding higher education in Wales
Department for Employment and Learning (DELNI)
Is the Government department responsible for developing and sustaining a research sector in Northern Ireland.
Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC)
Supports research in the arts and humanities, including subjects such as history, modern languages and English literature, the creative and performing arts.
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC)
The UK’s main funder of basic and strategic biological research.
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
Supports research and training in engineering and the physical sciences.
Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)
A research funding and training agency addressing economic and social concerns
Medical Research Council (MRC
Supports research with the aim of maintaining and improving human health.
Natural Environment Research Council (NERC)
Provides funding for science in universities and its own research centres with the aim of increasing knowledge and understanding of the natural world.
Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)
The STFC is one of Europe's largest multidisciplinary research organisations supporting scientists and engineers worldwide. It covers research into astronomy, particle physics, space science and nuclear physics and provides UK access to large-scale world-class research facilities.
Research Councils UK (RCUK)
Is a strategic partnership of the seven UK research councils working together to create a common framework for research, training and knowledge transfer
UK Research Office (UKRO)
Based in Brussels, Belgium, the UKRO is the UK's leading information and advice service on European Union funding for research and higher education.

Non-Departmental Public Bodies

British Council
Our science programme supports scientific collaboration through the exchange of ideas and knowledge. It aims to build lasting relationships and networks between young scientists around the world; to make connections between science, technology and society; and to stimulate debate about the impact of science on people’s lives.
Arts Council England
Aims to develop and promote the arts across England, acting as an independent body at arm's length from government. Each devolved administration has a separate development, promotion and funding agency for the arts.
Arts Council of Northern Ireland
The Arts Council is the lead development agency for the arts in Northern Ireland.
Arts Council of Wales
The Arts Council of Wales is responsible for funding and developing the arts in Wales.
Scottish Arts Council
The Scottish Arts Council is the lead body for the funding, development and advocacy of the arts in Scotland.


European Commission 7th Framework Programme (EU FP7)
Is the Seventh Framework Programme for research and technology development funding from the European Commission.  It has many funding opportunities in all areas of research, under four themed areas covering cooperation, ideas, people and capacities.
Human Frontier Science Program (HFSP)
The HFSP supports novel, innovative and interdisciplinary basic research focused on the complex mechanisms of living organisms.
European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO)
Is a member organisation that promotes excellence in the molecular life sciences in Europe through targeted programmes and activities.

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