Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Open New Round of Grand Challenges Explorations

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) Grand Challenges Explorations grants are awarded biannually for innovative early stage projects that foster scientific and technological innovation in global health research. The Foundation periodically invites applications in areas strategically aligned to their priorities. Areas previously covered by the invitations include: infectious disease control; family health; sanitation; agriculture; and communications/big data.

Grants are given in two stages:

Phase 1: for 18 month long projects to collect data to establish proof of concept.

Phase 2: approximately 10% of Phase 1 projects are subsequently funded for up to two years to develop the concept to an implementable solution.

Priority topics for Round 23 are:

Emerging Technologies for New Solutions in Global Health Priority Areas

Proposals are sought that apply an emerging technology – or a combination of emerging technologies – for new and potentially transformative solutions in global health priority areas, including infectious disease outcomes, pregnancy and birth outcomes, child growth and development outcomes, disease surveillance, and research for the development of new vaccines, drugs (including non-hormonal contraceptives), and diagnostics. The goal of this challenge is to foster and support impact in global health through innovative uses of emerging technologies.

Environmental niches of Salmonella Typhi

Proposals are invited that examine the environmental niches of S. Typhi, and specifically those that will increase understanding of the following:

Survival of S. Typhi in the context of the soil and water microbiomes. S. Typhi survives for three weeks in the presence of A. castellani, but for no more than 10 days by itself. Do interactions with other organisms impact survival of S. Typhi? How do they impact transmissibility of the bacterium?

Survival of S. Typhi within other organisms. Similar to V. cholerae, which thrives within zooplankton, does S. Typhi interact with aquatic multicellular organisms? If yes, how does this impact the transmission and epidemiology of typhoid?

Impact of environmental niches on the development of antibiotic resistance in S. Typhi. What is the relative amount of time S. Typhi spends in the environment compared to in infected individuals? How does this impact its exposure to antibiotics, and the development of antibiotic resistance in S. Typhi strains?

Increasing Demand for Vaccination Services

This call aims to increase demand for vaccination services, and to increase the number of children vaccinated globally. Innovative ideas are sought in the following areas:

Novel approaches for providing practical knowledge about vaccines and vaccination services to caregivers.

Novel ideas for improving the convenience and/or caregiver seeking of vaccination services.

Applications are invited from any organisation worldwide, including academic institutions, non-profit organisations, for-profit companies, international organisations and government agencies.

Grants of up to $100,000 for 18 months are available for Phase I projects. Successful projects may then apply once for a Phase II grant of up to $1 million to fund projects for a further two years. The Foundation expects to fund approximately 50 awards each round, depending on the quality of proposals received.

Applications for Round 23 must be submitted by the 10 April 2019 (11.30 PDT).

More information about this research funding opportunity and the application process is available on the RESEARCHconnect funding information platform. RESEARCHconnect provides up-to-the minute content, insight and analysis on research funding news and policy. To find out more about how RESEARCHconnect can keep you in the know, and subscription fees, contact us today.