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Bioscience Big Ideas Pipeline

Copyright: darkday on Flickr by CC 2.0

Contribute to UKRI-BBSRC’s vision ‘to push back the frontiers of biology to deliver a healthy, prosperous and sustainable future’.

UKRI-BBSRC’s ‘Bioscience Big Ideas Pipeline’ is a programme through which we aim to engage with our broad research and innovation community in a quest to identify adventurous and exciting ideas that have the potential to be transformational. We’re looking for ideas that will capture the imagination of researchers, the public, industry and government. From pressing challenges in fundamental research through to addressing issues affecting society and the world in which we live. Through this pipeline we hope to discover compelling ideas that have the potential to develop into thoughtful, cross-cutting research agendas that bridge recognized gaps in our existing knowledge.

Translating discovery to impact requires bold approaches, built on core research. UKRI-BBSRC is seeking to venture beyond traditional paradigms to invite input from trusted stakeholders as well as new and unconventional partners. In this way, we aim to ensure that our future priorities are inclusive, innovative and in touch with the interests and priorities of our stakeholder communities.

The Bioscience Big Ideas Pipeline is a chance to participate in a visioning exercise to help identify the next generation of potential research and innovation priorities. It is not a call for proposals. The process is designed to capture and review exciting community-led ideas to inform the development of future research and innovation strategy and this in turn could potentially attract investment or lead to support for community activities. The Bioscience Big Ideas Pipeline is an opportunity to contribute to UKRI-BBSRC’s vision ‘to push back the frontiers of biology to deliver a healthy, prosperous and sustainable future’.

What is a Big Idea?

A Big Idea is expected to be innovative, distinctive and compelling and have the potential to create transformational change. We’re seeking ideas that will excite and inspire and are on a much larger scale than a single research grant. Importantly, Big Ideas should have the potential to be achievable and deliver a step change if resourced in the right way. The Big Ideas should appeal to the research and innovation communities that would be expected to play a central role in realising their potential. Fundamental, strategic or applied, all Big Ideas are welcome, and multidisciplinary Big Ideas are particularly encouraged. A cross UKRI-forum has been convened to encourage and support ideas that cross disciplinary boundaries and Councils will work together to support ideas with the most potential regardless of where submitted.

How do I submit a Big Idea?

By completing and submitting the form below, and you can do this at any time. Please provide a single contact point in the submission.

I’ve submitted a Big Idea, what happens next?

Ideas will be batched on a regular basis (approximately quarterly) and reviewed and prioritised utilising the most appropriate mechanisms in UKRI-BBSRC’s strategic advisory network. Post -submission, UKRI-BBSRC will communicate with originators relating to the progress of their idea in the pipeline.

Batches of ideas will first be checked for general suitability for the pipeline, including relevance to bioscience and the Big Idea’s distinctiveness (i.e. the Big Idea isn’t the topic of an existing or planned research and innovation programme). The second step will be consideration of the idea’s transformative potential and this stage will be overseen by UKRI-BBSRC advisory structures. Originators will be provided with feedback following completion of this process.

How will the Big Ideas be used?

Ideas identified as having high transformative potential will be considered as a part of the regular review of UKRI-BBSRC Strategy and may be developed into business cases for investment or used to shape community building activities.

Please note, once a Big Idea has been submitted you are giving UKRI-BBSRC permission to develop the idea in any way it sees appropriate. This may include further development by BBSRC staff working with the submitter and inviting other people to lead and/or be involved development of the idea.

Submission template

Bioscience Big Ideas submission template (DOCX 74KB)

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Submission guidance and FAQs


GDPR Statement

All personal data provided to BBSRC (as part of UK Research and Innovation) in connection to Bioscience Big Ideas Pipeline (BBIP) and submitted by email on the Word Template will be processed in accordance with current UK data protection legislation and the EU General Data Protection Regulations 2016/679 (GDPR) where appropriate. The personal information that you provide on this form will only be used for the processing of your submission. The information will be viewed by UKRI-BBSRC staff and those who are part of the reviewing process. Your information will not be used/shared for any other purpose without your specific consent. Further information on how we use personal data, and how you can exercise your rights as a data subject, can be found on the BBIP website, the submission guidance and FAQs and the UK Research and Innovation Privacy Notice ( UKRI-BBSRC reserves the right to publish and share anonymized aggregated information with stakeholders.

Header image copyright: darkday on Flickr by CC 2.0