The AHRC will be announcing a new call under the Science in Culture theme for Innovation Awards in November 2013.

Successful proposals to the Innovation Awards call are expected to expand and explore the Science in Culture theme in new and innovative ways.  In the context of this call, innovation can take a number of forms:

• Exploring new inter-disciplinary methodologies and approaches drawing on both the arts and humanities and the sciences

• Developing reciprocal collaborations of a new nature or in new or emerging fields of collaborative enquiry between the arts and humanities and the sciences

• Addressing innovative and inter-disciplinary research questions co-produced through dialogue between the arts and humanities and the sciences

In most cases, successful proposals will be expected to be innovative on a number of levels in order to expand the Science in Culture theme , but they are not expected necessarily to be innovative in each of the areas listed above.  For example, a project may fall within a field of collaborative research enquiry that has already been addressed by other projects, but may be utilising new methodologies or collaborating with other disciplines (from the arts and humanities or the sciences) that may not have previously been involved in cross disciplinary research on the given research topic.  Ultimately, it is up to the applicant to make a strong case to the panel for the innovativeness of the project and the ways in which it will contribute to and expand the Science in Culture theme.

It has been noted by the AHRC, the Science in Culture Theme Leadership Fellow and the Science in Culture Theme Advisory Group that there are a number of disciplines which have either not yet applied for funding under the Science in Culture theme or which have not been successful under the theme.  We would like to encourage applicants from the full range of the AHRC remit to consider applying to this and future Science in Culture calls.  While an application that is from a previously unfunded discipline under Science in Culture would not be considered innovative in and of itself, there is a very strong opportunity for disciplines which have not previously been funded under the theme to develop highly innovative projects and contribute to the theme in new and exciting ways.

In considering applications under this call we will be particularly looking for proposals which develop reciprocal relationships between researchers in the arts and humanities and the sciences and which demonstrate the potential to lead to benefits and advances in both the arts and humanities and in the sciences.

Whilst developing new insights and areas of enquiry, projects should also outline, where appropriate, how they will build on, and connect with, the existing portfolio of research in the Science in Culture theme. All projects will be expected to show how they will enhance the current portfolio of research under the Theme and contribute to the broader development of the Theme, for example by addressing issues of cross-cutting interest within the theme.

Funding of up to £80K is available on a full economic costs basis with AHRC meeting 80% of the fEC.  Awards should last for a maximum of 12 months and are expected to start between October 2014 and April 2015.  Approximately 10 awards are expected to be funded through this call.