Newton Fund

The Newton Fund promotes, through science and innovation partnerships, the economic development and welfare of poor people in partnering countries. It aims to strengthen science and innovation capacity and unlock further funding to support poverty alleviation. The Fund is overseen by the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and delivered through 15 delivery partners in collaboration with 15 partnering countries.

The Newton Fund was launched in 2014 and originally consisted of £75 million each year for five years. In the 2015 UK Spending Review it was agreed to extend and expand the Fund. The Newton Fund was extended from 2019 to 2021 and expanded by doubling the £75 million investment to £150 million by 2021, leading to a £735 million UK investment to 2021, with partner countries providing matched resources within the Fund.

Newton Fund activities are in three broad areas:

  • People: increasing capacity for science and innovation in partner countries.
  • Research: research collaborations on development topics.
  • Translation: creating collaborative solutions to development challenges and strengthening innovation systems.

EPSRC and our sister Research Councils are among the UK delivery partners for the Newton Fund, and we are working strategically with partner countries to develop a series of research activities to address challenges defined by the overarching ambitions of the Fund.

In line with our international strategy, we are focusing our Newton Fund resources on sustainable development research activities with China and India, where we have strong existing relationships with funding partners. We also work with RCUK partners on joint calls through an RCUK common pot allocation as part of the Newton Fund.

Highlights of our Newton Fund activities

  • Marine energy development feasibility studies, in partnership with the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST)
  • APEX Phase II - advancing the efficiency and production potential of excitonic solar cells, in partnership with India's Department of Science and Technology (DST)