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New £18.5 million research funding opportunity

Date: 09/02/2012

The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and seventeen other European national funding organisations and the European Commission have launched a new £18.5 million research funding opportunity for arts and humanities academics.

Organised by Humanities in the European Research Area (HERA) and facilitated in the UK through the AHRC, this Joint Research Programme (JRP) call is intended to enable large trans-national Collaborative Research Projects (CRPs) to increase understanding of Cultural Encounters.

This HERA call represents a significant opportunity for the UK arts and humanities research community to secure major international funding for arts and humanities projects - up to £1 million per project in a fund of up to £18.5 million.

By launching the 'Cultural Encounters' HERA JRP call for proposals, the national funding partners want to create collaborative, trans-national research opportunities that will derive new insights from humanities research in order to address the major social and cultural challenges facing Europe.

History shows that the interactions between individuals and groups of people are among the most formative dimensions of human endeavour and social change. These processes of encounter and migration (of people, ideas, goods and objects) have impacts all the way from the 'micro' level of individual lives to the 'macro' levels of ideology and societal institutions.

Arts and humanities research in the UK is a major force in European research. Of the 19 projects awarded funding under the earlier HERA call in 2009, 18 involved or were lead by researchers at UK Research Organisations.

International collaborations such as this offer exciting and important opportunities to researchers to undertake new research, tap into wider networks and allow them to jointly address major social and cultural challenges facing Europe.

To ensure as many UK academics as possible have an opportunity to participate in this research call the AHRC will be holding two information sessions in March- in Edinburgh (13 March) and London (19 March).

The briefings will provide a significant opportunity to ask questions about the Cultural Encounters theme, eligibility and how to apply. It will also be an opportunity to network and forge new contacts. Please see the Hera Cultural Encounters web page for how to register to attend these events.

Outline proposals need to be submitted electronically via the HERA website by 2 May 2012.

A programme-specific website can be consulted for the latest updates at HERA.


AHRC Media contact: Jake Gilmore, Communications Manager, telephone 01793 416021; emailj.gilmore@ahrc.ac.uk

Notes to Editors

>The Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC):

 Each year the AHRC provides approximately £100 million from the Government to support research and postgraduate study in the arts and humanities, from languages and law, archaeology and English literature to design and creative and performing arts. In any one year, the makes approximately 700 research awards and around 1,100 postgraduate awards. Awards are made after a rigorous peer review process, to ensure that only applications of the highest quality are funded. The quality and range of research supported by this investment of public funds not only provides social and cultural benefits but also contributes to the economic success of the UK.

The AHRC's international activities, such as its involvement in HERA, raise the profile of UK research and increase the economic, social and cultural impact of UK arts and humanities worldwide. They offer opportunities to researchers, enable them to harness the expertise of researchers around the globe and increase the UK's global influence. They also enable funders to share best practice.


is a partnership between 21 Humanities Research Councils across Europe and the European Science Foundation (ESF), with the objective of firmly establishing the humanities in the European Research Area and in the European Commission Framework Programmes.

Cultural Encounters call:

Successful proposals will require the building of consortia of three or more partners based in three or more different HERA HERA JRP countries (e.g. UK, Netherlands, Austria etc). The total value of a collaborative research project proposal can be up to £1 million and 36 months duration.

HERA HERA JRP collaborative research projects are humanities-driven, but do not exclude participation from other disciplines that are relevant to addressing the theme of the call.

The HERA network are pleased to announce that five new countries have joined this Cultural Encounters call and the beneficiaries of this Call are eligible scholars located in Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Ireland, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Sweden and United Kingdom, irrespective of their nationality.

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