HEC invites research proposals for funding under Grand Challenge Fund

The Higher Education Commission (HEC) Pakistan has invited research proposals from faculty members of public and private universities to submit research proposals for HEC funding under the Grand Challenge Fund (GCF).

The Grand Challenge Fund (GCF) is a key element of the Higher Education Development in Pakistan Project supported by the World Bank and implemented by the Higher Education Commission (HEC). The GCF is anticipated to promote research excellence in strategic sectors of the economy, and will provide funds to selected institutions competitively using a merit-based, independent, transparent evaluation and selection process based upon international standards. 

The GCF will support large multisectoral/multidimensional research projects. Successful GCF projects are expected to be collaborative in scope, with research teams working cooperatively to accelerate research progress for societal impact. GCF is focused on supporting research in priority thematic areas of national interest. The amount of funding for GCF awards is PKR 15-225 million for a maximum project duration of 3 years.

Applicant Eligibility:

  • Lead Principal Investigators (PIs) must be university faculty members (with PhD or FCPS/MCPS/FRCS) from research intensive institution as notified for GCF Call 2020.
  • Project Team may include:
  • A consortia of faculty members from multiple university departments and/or multiple universities.
  • Private sector participants, particularly when they bring prior IP or capability to the consortium and/or significant deployment, implementation, or scale up capability.
  • International partners.
  • International collaborations are encouraged: when the international partner brings a unique added value to the project team.

Applications on prescribed template along with the requisite documents must be submitted by the PI and Head of ORICs/Head of Research at the respective HEI will endorse the submitted application via HEC online portal. The deadline for project online submission is May 23, 2021.

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