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Cross-research council programmes

BBSRC contributes to cross-research council programmes in several areas.

For more information on the aim and scope of our involvement, please see our Responsive mode priorities.

We also have Science contacts for each cross-council priority.

Funding opportunities

Details of funding opportunities in these areas can be found in All calls.


The Energy Programme aims to position the UK to meet its energy and environmental targets and policy goals through world-class research and training. This programme is investing more than £625 million in research and skills to pioneer a low carbon future. This builds on an investment of £839 million over the past eight years (December 2011).

Brain Science and Mental Health

Understanding the brain is one of the greatest intellectual challenges of our time. The potential impact such understanding would have on preventing and treating nervous system disorders makes it a challenge worth taking on. Through the brain science programme researchers are working to understand more about how the normal brain and the senses work, as well as what goes wrong and why.


e-Science is the invention of computer-enabled methods and their application to research. Through the e-Science programme, £44 million has been invested in projects to develop and apply e-science techniques in different research fields.

Global Food Security

The UK's main public funders of food-related research and training are working together through Global Food Security to meet the challenge of providing the world's growing population with a sustainable, secure supply of good quality food from less land and with fewer inputs.

Lifelong Health and Wellbeing

Life expectancy in the UK is increasing at an unprecedented rate. One in six people are currently over 65. By 2033 that figure is projected to rise to 25% of the UK's population. The programme aims to meet the challenges and opportunities of an ageing population.

Living with Environmental Change

Our planet faces unprecedented change. If we continue on our current path, by the end of this century, or earlier, our environment will be in a state that modern humans have never experienced. The programme will provide decision makers with the best information to effectively manage and protect vital ecosystem services. It will improve our tools and knowledge needed to build resilience, mitigate problems, and adapt to environmental change.


The nanoscience programme provided a focus to evolve nanotechnology. This coordination of research ensured that the UK remained a world leader in this area.