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Synthetic Biology in Cambridge


Relevant funding opportunities for researchers in synthetic biology

Research Funding

BBSRC and EPSRC have both invested in synthetic biology. There are no specific active calls but they continue to fund through responsive mode grants. 


Translational Funding and Investment



UK Innovation & Science Seed Fund (formerly the Rainbow Seed Fund) is a £27.1m early-stage venture capital fund building and growing technology companies stemming from the UK’s research base, with a specific programme for Synthetic Biology.

Latest Funding Opportunities

Up to 40,000 funding for projects using plants as sensors for toxic chemicals.

Up to £800,000 funding for BBSRC-funded researchers interested in translation of research into practical application and commercialisation.

£10,000 funding for enterpreneurs aged 18-30 in the UK and South Africa to tackle global challenges.

Up to £15,000 funding for postdoctoral researchers and recent PhD graduates at University of Cambridge with work linked to prior EPSRC-funded research.

Up to £300,000 funding over 3 years for interdisciplinary resaerch between medicine and engineering.

Innovate UK, as part of UK Research and Innovation, is offering 10 Women in Innovation Awards to female entrepreneurs across the UK. The winners will receive a £50,000 grant and a bespoke package of mentoring, coaching and business support.

Up to £300,000 funding available for early-stage development projects in ambitious and highly adventurous healthcare technologies (HT) research.

Flexible funding available for investigator-led projects in healthcare technologies, especially in the areas of transformation of community health and care and improvment of prevention and public health.

Up to £50,000 funding available for collaborations between UK and japanese laboratories. Funding to cover costs of travel, subsistence and other activities, such as workshops or exchanges.

ACS award of $5000, certificate and meeting travel expenses for outstanding and creative contributions to fundamental discoveries or inventions in ultrafast science & technology.

Linnean Society award of £1000 and a medal for the best doctoral thesis in biology.

£200,000 plus funding available for mid-range equipment that underpins core capabilities, pioreers the use of emerging advanced research technology or utilises equipment in novel applications.

€5000-15000 funding available for projects in the areas of fighting pests while preserving biodiversity, accelerating precision agriculture and reducing chemical input and enhancing soil health.

Learn more about applying for UKRI and Innovate UK's Future Leaders Fellowships with funding of up to £1.5m. Webinar 9th October. Internal application deadline 16th November.

Up to £1.2 million funding to support postdoctoral researchers who aim to become independent scientists leading their own groups.

Up to £300,000 funding available for salary enhancement, research costs and potential PhD studentship. Funding will enable UK universities and research institutions to strategically recruit and attract outstanding research leaders to the UK from overseas.

Opportunity for academics and postdocs to undertake short (up to 6 month) secondments with industry partners. Funds a basic salary and £100 research expenses.

The Biochemical Society wishes to support scientific outreach activities that communicate the excitement of molecular bioscience to young people and the community. Funding available up to £1000.

Incubateur Descartes and partners are organising “the Aggregator 2020”, an International Start-Up vs Covid-19 Matchmaking Competition between Europe, Africa and India

1:1 support and training available for innovators and SMEs looking to develop the next wave of technologies that could be deployed in 2030-50 to make a substantive impact in meeting the UK and global Net Zero ambitions. Applications encouraged in areas including synthetic biology and industrial biotechnology.

Up to 3 year fellowships availble for PhD students representing the future of research in areas including computational neuroscience, heath research and machine learning. Includes a bursary and assigned Google mentor. Internal application process via the Research Strategy Office.

The awards provide up to £25,000 over one year to support collaborations between developing countries and the UK and to hold networking events aimed at addressing global challenges. 

Large-scale funding available for long term projects that support the development of a sustainable bioeconomy in Europe. Call open to all sectors including academia and industry.

Competition to win up to £80,000 funding for early-stage, human-centred design projects to reduce plastics’ harm to the environment, increase productivity and grow the UK economy.

Young people (18-30) can apply for an award to make their business idea a reality. The Award includes a £5,000 grant, tailored business support and a living allowance.

Call for research proposals addressing COVID-19 in Low and Middle Income Countries (LMICs). Up to £1m funding supported by NIHR and UKRI.

Applications open for an 8 month training programe to develop scalable engineering solutions to local challenges in sub-Saharan Africa. Prize money of £25,000 for one winner, and £10,000 for three runners-up.

Call for project proposals requiring access to high performance computing facilities, including the EPSRC's Tier1 and most Tier2 HPC services.

$10,000-10 million funding for projects that harness the power of data science to help people and communities thrive.