Scotland Asia Partnerships Higher Education Research Fund (SAPHIRE)

Funding area: Arts & Humanities, International, Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM), Social Sciences

The Scotland Asia Partnerships HIgher education REsearch Fund (SAPHIRE) is a new grant scheme funded by the Scottish Government with the aim of enhancing the existing international research partnerships between Scottish universities and partners in India, Japan and Pakistan. Funding is available to Scottish universities, with the stated objectives of expanding existing research partnerships (e.g. to other universities/consortia); developing a practical application for the research; widening the scope of the existing partnership; and enabling the research to include a focus on economic and/or social recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic where appropriate.

Applications are welcomed from research projects covering the following areas:

  • Water — access to clean water and sanitation for all; sustainable water supply and management; water security.
  • Renewable Energy — clean and renewable energy; access to affordable, sustainable energy; decentralised and off-grid energy systems; low carbon transport and heat energy systems; energy storage.
  • Life Sciences — bio-technology; bio-chemistry; bio-engineering. Application to sustainable agriculture/aquaculture, food security, human and animal nutrition.
  • Data and innovation — data-driven innovation; Artificial intelligence (AI); Big Data; the Internet of Things; open data innovation; application of data science to civic challenges (e.g. health).
  • Technology — Innovative technology; enabling equitable access to services; resilient infrastructure; sustainable industrialisation.
  • Meeting the global health, well-being, social and other challenges caused by Covid-19.

For more information on how to apply and to get access to the relevant forms and guidance, please contact the Awards Team.

Fund deadline passed

This fund is currently closed for applications.

Fund value

Each award will be in the region £5000 to £10,000 per project.

Fund duration

8 months (from 23rd October 2020 to 30th June 2021)


The SAPHIRE scheme is open to researchers, from all Scottish Universities, who are involved in existing peer reviewed research projects which:

  • Relate to one of the themes highlighted above;
  • Are already receiving peer reviewed funding;
  • Include a partner from India, Japan and/or Pakistan (projects can include additional partners from other countries.