The British Heart Foundation (BHF) has recently launched a new single £30 million research award: ‘The Big Beat Challenge’. This challenge aims to fund “the world’s greatest minds tackling the world’s biggest killers”.
The BHF is already the largest independent charity funder of cardiovascular research in the U.K, and is hoping with this substantial award to fund research that creates big change and accelerates real progress.
This new award differs from the currently offered BHF funding streams in three main ways. Firstly, the challenge is open to international applicants and does not require a UK applicant to be part of the team. Secondly, the award is open to any domain, not just cardiovascular researchers hoping to appeal to teams utilising different skills and technologies. Thirdly, any aspect of heart or circulatory disease can be addressed by the challenges as long as there is a clear route to patient benefit.
Applications will need to be innovative, aiming for transformative rather than incremental gains. Teams will need to be highly collaborative and multi-disciplinary with a proposal that can justify this scale of funding. The project needs to be milestone-led, with a willingness to engage with BHF supporters.
Outline proposals can be submitted via the BHF website from December 2018. Following a review by an international advisory panel, shortlisted teams will be invited to submit full applications. Seed funding and advisory panel input will be made available at this time to further develop the proposals.
The winner of the challenge will be announced in the Spring of 2020.