The British Academy Launches Youth Futures Programme

Funded by the UK’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (through the Global Challenges Research Fund), the British Academy’s Youth Futures Programme aims to support research which demonstrates an interdisciplinary approach yielding new conceptual understanding, developing ground-breaking research and energising innovative collaborations in the humanities and social sciences related to one or more of the three sub-themes below:

Creativity: Understanding youth creativity and flexibility to identify imaginative solutions in developing countries that are effective and foster a sense of ownership by young people. The scope can be wide, but could include attention to how to amplify the voice of young people locally, nationally and globally; how to foster intergenerational and institutional trust; how to develop new approaches to the green and low waste economy at a local level; the pathways that young people take and how policies affect them including the gap between policy, communities of interest, collective action and practice; how young people experience, and have experienced, change; or how to identify imaginative solutions to mitigate climate change.

Categories: The UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development states that people who are vulnerable, such as young people, must be empowered. Youth populations experience a combination of lack of economic opportunities (especially when combined with educational attainment, and concomitant expectations), lack of political voice and a sense of relative deprivation. The Academy would like to support projects that bring young people into the process of determining and setting the categorisations and concepts by which they view themselves and others, and how these foster their motivations, actions and aspirations. For example, this could include reconceptualising terms such as informality, inequality, mobility, resilience, identity, class, vulnerability and precarity from a youth perspective.

Livelihood & Work: The meanings and manifestations of livelihood and work for and by young people in different settings on the ground are critical for our understanding of young people’s ambitions and expectations. The Academy is keen to encourage applications that focus on the practices and narratives of youth livelihoods and work (including unpaid domestic work) and provide a voice for young people to express their own perspectives. The changing attitudes of young people towards livelihood and work, particularly in our changing environment, are vital for illustrating how young people are and will live their lives and how society as a whole can be developed to support and integrate effectively the next generation.

The Academy expects the awards made through the Programme to:

Provide new understandings of youth expectations and youth involvement in work that are broader and more nuanced than current thinking and interventions

Identify the contributions young people make and could make to policy development and their perspectives on how to build purposeful lives

Develop ways of collaborating in cross-disciplinary ways, and in partnership with young people and local partners

Link research and evidence involving and driven by young people with policymakers to shape future interventions and approaches.

Principal Investigators must be based in the UK, however, equitable international collaboration is strongly expected to be detailed in any application. The British Academy particularly encourage collaboration with institutions and partners in the Global South.

This programme will only fund projects which are ODA-eligible.

Projects must be 21 months in duration, with a maximum value of £300,000 (offered at 100% FEC).

All projects must start on 20 March 2020.

Applications must be submitted by the deadline of 4 December 2019.

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.