NIHR Global Health Research Units

The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) has opened the third call for Global Health Research Units to allocate funding for collaborations between universities and research institutes in LMICs and the UK who wish to establish new programmes of applied health research.

Awards up to £7 million over a period of up to 5 years are available in any field of applied global health research for the direct and primary benefit of people living in one or more ODA-eligible countries. All applications must have two joint lead applicants (one at an eligible LMIC institution and one at an eligible UK institution). The call will have two closing dates (November 2020 and May 2021) and the NIHR require submission of a mandatory intent to submit (ItS) at least one month prior to the call close.

To manage demand for the call, NIHR have limited the number of applications that Oxford can submit to two bids across both call dates, so a co-ordinated bids process will select two bids to go forward to the NIHR. For this reason, anyone considering applying for either round must submit an expression of interest by Wednesday 29 July 2020.

Applications can only be submitted to one of the two advertised call close dates (either November 2020 or May 2021). The demand management restrictions apply to NIHR Global Health Units and not to NIHR Global Health Research Group applications, which can proceed as normal. Deadlines were chosen with the aim to allow enough time post internal selection for the selected bids to work up to the external deadline and also for those who are not selected to go ahead as units to consider reforming as a group.

How to apply

Internal EOIs must be submitted via IRAMS by noon on Wednesday 29 July 2020. Departmental approver sign-off must also be provided in IRAMS.

To be considered in the internal coordinated bids process, please upload the completed internal EoI and CVs for each the UK and LMIC joint lead applicants. The CVs should describe the role that you will be undertaking in the research (for example co-ordination and project management, analysis, methodological input), % FTE commitment, publication record and research grants held, all as a single PDF (up to 3 pages).

To be eligible as the UK joint lead, applicants must hold a salaried position with the University that incorporates research, and have sufficient time remaining on their contract to complete the proposed project.

Those interested in applying may wish to attend the NIHR briefing event on 8 July. 

Applicants will be notified of the outcomes on or around 12 August 2020. The two successful unit proposals can then complete the full intent to submit (ItS) application forms available from the NIHR. The deadline for submission of ItS applications in the portal is 1pm on 18 November 2020 or 18 May 2021.

If you have any questions, please email Jo Miller, Global Health Facilitator, at

Co-ordinated University bids