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Rad ignition fund - Flexible seed funding for unexpected breakthroughs


Flexible seed funding for unexpected breakthroughs

Research funding is often fixed to a set body of work. Much like the process of developing a winning racing car, scientific discovery rarely follows a linear path. There are new leads or unexpected breakthroughs. Additional funds are needed to quickly exploit an opportunity and avoid high potential ideas being shelved.

The Race Against Dementia Ignition Fund supports exceptional scientists in their dementia research. Applications can be made for up to £100k and are assessed by Race Against Dementia’s expert scientific panel. The panel convene at least twice a year. Funding can be used for equipment, headcount or research costs.

Hear what people affected by dementia have to say about Race Against Dementia
“Any problem with my racing car, and the whole team would work to resolve it – fast. This problem-solving mentality should be applied to medical research. I hope these funds will leave no stone unturned in our fight against dementia.”

Sir Jackie Stewart OBE

There are lots of ways you can support us. In doing so, you can make a huge difference to research, join the race today.

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Ignite dementia research – grant call for applications

We want to support innovative research that will facilitate a ‘stage shift’ towards dementia prevention, improved diagnosis, treatment and understanding of the fundamental science of the disease. Applicants do not need any preliminary data in order to apply – but smart and novel new ideas are particularly welcome.

Race Against Dementia Ignition Grants are available for up to 24 months duration and funding up to £100,000. Applications are accepted from UK-based early and mid-career researchers, including current and past Race Against Dementia Fellows and Associates, however applications from more senior researchers will also be considered, and all will be subject to our peer review process. There are no limits on the number of applications from an institution but only one application per applicant is allowed.

The one-stage application process is designed to be simple and rapid. To apply please prepare an application (maximum two pages) which requires the following:

  • Lay summary
  • Scientific outline:
    • Brief background justifying the proposed project.
    • Aims of the project
    • Overview of the proposed project
    • Quality of team and research environment
    • Why this is an unexpected element of research?
  • Budget/costings
  • References

The review panel will award grants on scientific merit and on the quality of the application and applicants. The Grant Panel Members will review all applications in advance of a panel meeting and then discuss and score each before making recommendations for funding – at this stage if further information is required the applicants may be contacted to answer questions or provide clarification. These recommendations will be presented to the Race Against Dementia trustees for final approval. The terms and conditions of the grant will be outlined in a contract drawn up once the grants have been awarded. Please note Race Against Dementia does not pay institutional overheads on research grants.


Applications for 2023 are now closed. If you have a query about the programme please email ignitionfund@ raceagainstdementia.com
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