University Global Partnership Network Research Collaboration Fund

The University Global Partnership Network (UGPN) is pleased to announce the Research Collaboration Fund (RCF) call for proposals 2020.

2020 Call for Proposals

The UGPN exists to create a foundation for international collaboration enabling academics and students from world-leading universities to work together on issues of global importance. Its members are North Carolina State University (NC State), the Universidade de São Paulo (USP), the University of Surrey (UOS) and the University of Wollongong (UOW). The RCF supports international activities leading to high-quality research collaborations between UGPN partner institutions.

For the RCF 2020 call, the network particularly welcomes proposals demonstrating:

  • the potential for impact on one or more of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and/or;
  • a focus on the COVID-19 global pandemic and related impacts

Funding of up to US$10,000 (or the approximate AU$, £, R$ equivalent) per participating institution in each successful proposal will be made available for travel, subsistence, consumables related to the project and the dissemination of results. Projects run from 1st August 2020 to 31st July 2021.

The deadline for proposal submissions is Monday July 6, 2020.

For further information and to make an application, please visit the members area of the UGPN website.

For queries, please contact David Dixon at or


  • Call for project proposals – June 1, 2020
  • Submission deadline – July 6, 2020
  • Successful projects selected in late July 2020
  • Funded projects to be completed by July 31, 2021


2020 Funded Proposals

We are pleased to announce the awardees for the 2020 UGPN Research Collaboration Fund. A total of 38 proposals were submitted for competitive review. Eight proposals representing researchers from the four partner institutions were selected for funding, with five proposals including an NC State PI:
  • Production and validation of a bovine lung-on-a-chip to study bovine respiratory diseases (NC State and University of Surrey)
    • NC State lead – Geof Smith, Professor, Department of Population Health and Pathobiology
  • 2D quantum materials for clean energy harvesting (NC State, University of Wollongong and University of Sao Paulo)
    • NC State lead – Divine Kumah, Assistant Professor, Department of Physics
  • Monty Goes Down Under: Adapting a Game-Based Learning Environment for International Student Collaboration (NC State and University of Wollongong)
    • NC State lead – John Nietfeld, Professor, Department of Teacher Education and Learning Sciences
  • Understanding the Emotional Impact of COVID-19 Coverage in Popular Media, and its Implications? (NC State, University of Surrey, University of Wollongong, and University of Sao Paulo)
    • NC State lead – Munindar Singh, Professor, Department of Computer Science
  • Development of a machine-learning framework to identify risk factors for COVID-19 infection in swine caretakers and estimate the chances of new COVID-19 waves. (NC State and University of Sao Paulo)
    • NC State lead – Monique Pairis-Garcia, Associate Professor, Department of Population Health and Pathobiology