EPSRC Design the Future

Do You Remember the Future by JD Hancock CC BY 2.0EPSRC has recently announced the Design the Future call, which aims “to encourage adventurous research addressing future design challenges, researching the effect of new science and engineering on the designers and the design process, leading to the development of future products, processes, devices, services and industrial and infrastructure systems.”

What’s available?

Up to £300,000 in total for small, feasibility projects (18-months duration) that help develop innovative, exciting ideas on engineering design for future applications. EPSRC will review the portfolio of funded projects in 2016 and may then provide additional funding for extensions and further research and impact.

What are they looking for?

Adventurous research with the potential to lead to new products, processes and services. The research supported by this call should explore the following themes:

  • How engineering design can accelerate the adoption of new materials, new processes and new technologies
  • How engineering design can be more creative, more effective and allow for new design paradigms
  • How engineering design is conducted within organisational and manufacturing contexts
  • How engineering designers engage with users and other stakeholders.

How do I apply?

There are two stages to the application process. Stage 1 is a “concept audition” which consists of a short expression of interest form on the EPSRC website followed by a 2 minute pitch to a panel of academic and industry experts, then 10 minutes of questions.

Shortlisted applicants will then be invited into Stage 2, where the idea should be enhanced and developed into a research project that will be assessed at the main interview panel.

The initial concept auditions will be held at various locations in early December 2014, and the closing date for registration is 29th October. In order to attend you must complete the expression of interest on the EPSRC website. Early registration is advisable since EPSRC may operate a first-come, first-served policy if numbers are too high.

We advise you to contact your Faculty Research Funding and Policy Manager at an early stage to notify your intention to submit and for advice and guidance on the concept audition process.