Project period: July – December 2017 

This community previously received Initiator Funding for the project: Global Challenges in Energy and Healthcare

GW4 community leads 

University of Bath: Philippe Blondel 
University of Bristol: Sam Williamson 
Cardiff University: Kersty Hobson (PI) 
University of Exeter: Philipp Thies 

Project overview

The goal was to bring together researchers from a wide range of disciplines to build a community around key issues in Low Carbon Energy Access in Overseas Development Assistance Countries, in order to formulate a proposal to be taken forward to the forthcoming RCUK collective fund interdisciplinary hub call. 


The RCUK GCRF Collective Fund invited applications for large-scale interdisciplinary research hubs. The objective of this community was to prepare an international team in the field of low-carbon energy and energy access, aligned with the ‘Grand Challenge’ of ‘Secure, Clean and Efficient Energy’. The proposed hub would have been GW4-based and have co-produced research with ODA countries, supporting their capacity-building. The planned proposal was submitted, but was not successful in being awarded funding. 

Project summary 

The community created an international multi-disciplinary team that submitted an application to the RCUK Global Challenges Research Fund. To achieve this, the community held two workshops to shape their plans and GW4 researchers completed field visits to targeted ODA countries which developed working relationships with relevant stakeholders. The network of researchers and practitioners (international and inter-disciplinary) continues to build momentum and collaborate beyond the lifetime of this GW4 funding. These collaborations all focus on GCRF objectives, in the field of low carbon energy.