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Welcome to our blog – where researchers and innovators, leaders and those working on the ground share their personal stories and reflections on international development issues. 

22 May 2019
How Colombia and the UK are joining forces to protect biodiversity and save the planet

Despite its fundamental importance to our very existence, biodiversity is decreasing at an alarming rate. On the International Day for Biological Diversity, we look at the science and innovation partnerships pursuing a better understanding of biodiversity in Colombia and finding practical solutions to protect the more

08 March 2019
Rough waters: navigating challenges and opportunities in academia

Glaciologist, Caroline Clason, has faced significant personal and professional challenges on her academic journey so far, but that hasn't prevented her seizing the opportunity to lead a large grant on Peruvian glacier retreat – a critical issue for global more

18 February 2019
'The heart of the matter': from academic success to personal fulfillment

Jennifer Githaiga, researcher at University of Cape Town, shares her journey – from achieving her PhD, to entering uncharted academic waters managing a Newton funded project to improve awareness of breast and cervical cancer symptoms among women in South Africa.​​​​​ more

13 February 2019
From waste to health and wealth: transforming sanitation in Kenya

Kenyan civil engineer Joy Riungu explains how she developed a novel and cost-effective method of recycling human waste into animal feed and fertiliser – a simple intervention that could transform sanitation in Kenya’s congested rural and urban more

11 February 2019
How the Newton Mosharafa Fund is empowering women in STEM

We’ve all heard of Ada Lovelace, Sameera Moussa and Marie Curie, but there are many more women in STEM that deserve our attention. Since the launch of the Newton Mosharafa Fund in Egypt, there have been many incredible and inspiring women who have played a key role in finding solutions to challenges facing our more

09 February 2019
The women leading science and innovation in Brazil

For the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, Cindy Parker, Regional Manager for Science and Innovation in Latin America, celebrates some of the talented, committed and inspirational people working on science in more

17 December 2018
Preparing for the modern world together

Both the UK and South Africa also recognise that science is an international enterprise. Discoveries know no borders, and some of the best research comes through international partnerships. This is why the UK invests so heavily in international collaborations to drive research and build capacity and partnerships for the more

10 August 2018
Creative spaces can give young people in Africa a voice

Stories are often associated with fiction, but the process of generating real-life stories through research is increasingly understood to inspire political action on social issues. Story research, like arts research more generally, can change the way we see the world. Stories bring experiences and ideas into public and policy domains in a way that statistics or reports rarely more

10 August 2018
Research and innovation to unlock the power of youth

Sunday 12 August is International Youth Day: an annual recognition of young people – the unique perspectives they bring and the distinct challenges they face – and a call to action for the rest of us to step up and help these young men and women make their mark on the world. How is research and innovation supporting young people to be active citizens and agents for change? more

30 July 2018
From algae to electricity: creating sustainable energy from palm oil waste

Tropical countries rely heavily on agricultural and agro-industrial activities for revenue. In Malaysia the palm oil industry is a major source of income, but it is also one of the largest sources of highly polluting waste effluents. In 2016, the Newton-Ungku Omar Fund facilitated a research collaboration between our team at the University of Malaya and researchers at the University of Cambridge, led by Dr. Adrian Fisher. Our mission: to generate sustainable electricity using effluent waste from the palm oil more