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Newton Prize 2019 shortlist announced

  • UK and international experts join forces to tackle health, climate and development issues
  • Projects aim for sustainable impact through science, research and innovation
  • £1 million funding to be split among four projects with three countries

The shortlist for the Newton Prize 2019 has been revealed today (22 August), featuring 20 research projects tackling pressing health and development issues such as malaria, antimicrobial resistance and climate change.

The Newton Prize celebrates outstanding international research partnerships; the £1 million prize will be divided between four winning projects.

It is designed to enable international research partners to continue working together on solutions to some of the world’s key challenges such as human health, food security and climate change.

Science Minister Jo Johnson said:

“These international collaborations are uniting our world-leading universities with researchers across the globe to transform lives, now and for generations to come.

“I set up the Newton Prize to celebrate the best partnerships between the UK and countries across the world to tackle some of the world’s most pressing challenges. The shortlist announced today is a testament to that aim with global development priorities firmly on the agenda, including elimination of malaria, and clean energy.”

The list includes projects between the UK and China, Indonesia and the Philippines such as:

  • In 2018 the Philippines suffered £24 million worth of losses to rice yields due to drought. One Newton Prize project between the UK and Filipino researchers aims to create elite rice varieties with dual tolerance to salinity and drought to improve food crop performance and enable better planning.
  • Infrastructure development is one of the main priorities in developing countries. One shortlisted project between the UK and Indonesia is aiming to improve the safety and sustainability of bridge and housing projects and improve resilience to natural disasters.
  • Cites in coastal areas of China and Southeast Asia are heavily populated and exposed to frequent tropical storms, typhoons hazards and heat waves. One shortlisted project between the UK and China has created an assessment tool enabling cities to measure and monitor the factors that contribute to city’s resilience towards climate risk and hazard in the long term.

Research and innovation is a highly effective way to achieve international development goals and improve quality of life for people in developing countries as well as the UK. The shortlisted projects tackle a range of Sustainable Development Goals and contribute to gender equality.

The shortlisted projects have been peer reviewed and will be judged by the Newton Prize Committee, chaired by Professor Alice Gast, President of Imperial College. Professor Gast said:

“I am very impressed by the pioneering ideas, collaborative research and potential impact of the shortlisted applications for the Newton Prize 2019.

“I look forward to working with my fellow committee members to select the overall winners, it will not be an easy decision.”

Three prizes of up to £200,000 each will be awarded to a project with each prize country (China, Indonesia and the Philippines) that demonstrate high quality research and impact, and an additional prize (the Chair’s Award) of up to £500,000 for a project that also demonstrates the best knowledge exchange and partnership development.

During November 2019 the shortlisted projects will be celebrated at award events taking place in each country where the winning project for that country will be announced.

These events will be followed by a UK reception on the 9 December in London hosted by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and compèred by Emily Wilson, Editor of New Scientist magazine.

Notes to Editors:

The 2019 shortlist is:

UK-China

Development of an integrated urban framework for climate services in the Yangtze River Delta region.

Project leads: Professor Laixiang Sun, SOAS University of London and Professor Peiqun Zhang, National Climate Centre of China Meteorological Administration

Delivery partners: Met Office and the Chinese Meteorological Administration and the Chinese Academy of Sciences Institute of Atmospheric Physics

 

Transforming Service Design and Big data Technologies into Sustainable Urbanisation.

Project leads: Professor Sheng-feng Qin, Professor of Design, Northumbria University and Professor Cuixia Ma, Professor of Computing, Institute of Software, Chinese Academy of Sciences

Delivery partners: British Council and National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC)

 

Applying nature-based coastal defence to the world's largest urban area - from science to practice (ANCODE).

Project leads: Dr Judith Wolf, Physical Oceanographer and Marine Modeler, National Oceanography Centre and Dr Zhan Hu, Associate Professor, School of Marine Science, Sun Yat-sen University

Delivery partners: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC)

 

A High Performance Solar Heat and Power System Employing the Innovative Photovoltaic/Thermal Technology.

Project leads: Professor Xudong Zhao, University of Hull and Professor Jie Ji, University of Science and Technology of China

Delivery Partners: Innovate UK, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the Ministry of Science and Technology

 

Sino-British Centre for Research on Avian Diseases.

Project leads: Professor Venugopal Nair OBE, Pirbright Institute and Dr Zhiqiang Shen, Shandong Binzhou Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine Academy

Delivery partners: Biotechnology and Biosciences Research Council (BBSRC) and Shandong Binzhou Animal Science & Veterinary Medicine Academy

 

UK-Indonesia

The gendered everyday political economy of Kampung eviction and resettlement in Jakarta.

Project leads: Dr Juanita Elias, University of Warwick and Dr Chusnul Mariyah, Universitas Indonesia

Delivery partners: British Council and Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education of the Republic of Indonesia

 

Development of serology diagnosis of chronic aspergillosis and histoplasmosis in Indonesia.

Project leads: Professor David W Denning, University of Manchester and Professor Retno Wahyuningsih, Universitas Indonesia

Delivery partners: Medical Research Council and Indonesian Science Fund (DIPI) & Indonesian Endowment Fund for Education (LPDP)

 

Mainstreaming Integrated Disaster Risk Reduction and Climate Change Adaptation into Coastal Urban Agglomeration Policy.

Project leads: Professor Richard Haigh, University of Huddersfield and Dr Harkunti Rahayu, Institute of Technology Bandung

Delivery partners: British Council and Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education of the Republic of Indonesia

 

Transmission dynamics and molecular epidemiology of arboviruses in Indonesia.

Project leads: Professor Simon Frost, University of Cambridge and Dr Tedjo Sasmono, Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology

Delivery partners: Medical Research Council and Indonesian Science Fund (DIPI) & Indonesian Endowment Fund for Education (LPDP)

 

Tempe to Improve Memory in Elderly People with Dementia (TIME).

Project leads: Professor Eef Hogervorst, Loughborough University and Professor Tri Budi Radhardjo, URINDO and Universitas Indonesia

Delivery partners: British Council and Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education of the Republic of Indonesia

 

UK-Philippines

Water-Energy-Nutrient Nexus in the Cities of the Future.

Project leads: Dr Devendra Saroj, University of Surrey and Professor Michael Angelo Promentilla, De La Salle University

Delivery partners: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and Department of Science and Technology, Philippines

 

Low-cost Portable Molecular Diagnostic Platform for Rapid Detection of Poultry Infectious Pathogens (LMDP).

Project leads: Professor Wamadeva Balachandran, Brunel University London and Dr Dennis Umali, University of Philippines Los Banos

Delivery partners: Biotechnology and Biosciences Research Council and the Department of Agriculture,  Philippines

 

Using genomics to trace Salmonella transmission and antimicrobial resistance in the poultry and swine food chains in Metropolitan Manila, Philippines.

Project leads: Professor Taane Clark, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and Professor Windell Rivera, Natural Sciences Research Institute, University of the Philippines Diliman

Delivery partners: Biotechnology and Biosciences Research Council and the Department of Agriculture,  Philippines

 

ENSURE: Enhanced surveillance for control and elimination of malaria in the Philippines.

Project leads: Professor Chris Drakeley, The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and Dr Fe Espino, Research Institute for Tropical Medicine

Delivery partners: Medical Research Council and Department of Science and Technology, Philippines

 

Chair's Award

Developing Affordable Energy Efficient Bridge Health Monitoring and Early Warning System with Wireless Sensor Networks and Multi Agent System.

Project leads: Dr Dina Shona Laila, Coventry University and Professor Bambang Riyanto Trilaksono, Institute of Technology Bandung, Indonesia

Delivery partners: Royal Academy of Engineering and  Ministry of Research, Technology and Higher Education, Indonesia 

 

Tissue engineering of bronchi in health and sickness: assessing the effect of matrix stiffening on cellular changes in the airways.

Project leads: Professor Felicity Rose, University of Nottingham and Mr Jopeth Ramis, Technological Institute of the Philippines

Delivery partners: British Council and the Department of Science and Technology, Philippines

 

LIVEQuest: A self-contained wearable Internet-of-Things System for Precision Livestock Agriculture.

Project leads: Dr Yue Gao, Queen Mary University of London and Professor Zhixun Xie, Guangxi Veterinary Research Institute, China

Delivery partners: Innovate UK, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council (BBSRC), Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the Ministry of Science and Technology, China

 

Regional crop monitoring and assessment with quantitative remote sensing and data assimilation.

Project leads: Professor Philip Lewis, University College London and Professor Zhongxin Chen, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS)

Delivery partners: Science & Technology Facilities Council and the National Natural Science Foundation of China 

 

Novel approaches to the design of multitargeted drugs to treat endemic cancers.

Project leads: Professor Peter Sadler, University of Warwick and Dr Pingyu Zhang, Shenzhen University, China

Delivery partners: Royal Society and National Natural Science Foundation of China 

  • The Newton Prize was launched in 2016 and is part of the broader Newton Fund. The concept for the Newton Prize was developed to demonstrate how UK partnerships with Newton Partner countries are solving global challenges. Each year it will be awarded for the best research or innovation that promotes the economic development and social welfare of Newton partner countries, DAC List Countries or addresses global challenges, aligning with and strengthening the Newton Fund’s overall objectives.
  • The Newton Fund builds research and innovation partnerships with 17 partner countries to support their economic development and social welfare, and to develop their research and innovation capacity for long-term sustainable growth. It has a total UK Government investment of £735 million up until 2021, with matched resources from the partner countries. The Newton Fund is managed by the UK Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), and delivered in the UK through seven delivery partners including UK Research and Innovation, the UK Academies, the British Council and the Met Office. For further information visit the Newton Fund website (www.newtonfund.ac.uk) and follow via Twitter: @NewtonFund
  • *For applications between the UK and China it was an essential requirement that the project/s funded by the Newton Prize would be focused on global development challenges linked to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). All prize money needs to be spent in line with ODA guidance. 

 

Find out more:

Read about the 2017 and 2018 Newton Prize winners

Read our latest blogs from Newton Prize winning projects

Follow the Newton Fund on Twitter

 

Press contacts:

Mark Gardner

Senior Communications Manager

mark.gardner@odamanagement.org