UK Space Agency opens call to connect space industry and developing countries to help tackle economic, societal and environmental issues.
The Agency’s International Partnerships Programme (IPP) is a five-year, £152 million programme, designed to partner UK space expertise with overseas governments and organisations. It is part of the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF), which aims to support cutting-edge research and innovation that addresses the challenges faced by developing countries.
More than £70 million in funding has already been given to projects in partnership with the UK space industry, applying inventive satellite solutions to a range of areas such as deforestation, illegal fishing, marine pollution, disaster recovery, drought and flooding. The latest tranche of funding will focus on issues around health and education.
“The UK space sector is thriving with innovative developments and technologies that can be used to solve some of the most pressing global challenges of our time.
“The International Partnerships Programme has already harnessed Britain’s world-leading expertise in analysing satellite data to make a real difference to a number of countries. The latest round of funding is exactly the sort of project our Industrial Strategy is looking to support – boosting the UK space sector and delivering benefits to millions around the world.”
Universities and Science Minister
Call 2 for funding opens today (11 April 2017) and will close on 5 September 2017. The assessment is due to take place in October 2017 and successful projects will begin by the end of the year.
During the first round of funding, announced in January 2017, 20 projects were selected to provide solutions for local issues in countries across Africa, Asia and Central and South America. All of the projects will have a sustainable impact in the country they are working with, which is a vital element of IPP.
The programme’s current projects include providing communications in remote areas for education in Tanzania, improving maritime safety for small fishing vessels in South Africa and Madagascar and reducing illegal logging in Guatemala.