Frontiers of Development will host a series of symposia bringing together the best early-career researchers (5-20 years post-doc or industry equivalent) from industry, academia and government in multidisciplinary workshops that address fundamental development challenges, each of them involving 60 attendees (approx. half from the UK, half from the Global South). All events are due to be held in developing countries with a view to involving local governments and NGOs where possible to ensure a regional impact by grounding the symposium in the local, whilst maintaining a profoundly global essence by inviting a diverse range of participants from the developed and developing world.

The symposia will be formulated around a selection of broad topics grounded in development challenges, and structured to facilitate the building of networks across broad multi-disciplinary communities. Though the programme is run by the Royal Academy of Engineering, all four UK academies (The Academy of Medical Sciences, The British Academy and The Royal Society) will contribute their expertise to devise themes for the events collaboratively.

Each symposium will address a connected set of challenge-led themes, drawing upon the objectives set out in the GCRF strategy, and will invite participants from across the full range of disciplines from engineering, social science, natural science and medical science, to ensure a balance in subject area, culture and geography. A Cross-Academy Steering Group, comprised of fellows from all 4 Academies, will have oversight on the project and sign off on the themes and event chairs to ensure the project remains balanced and interdisciplinary.

Funding

Groups formed within the symposia will be encouraged to apply for the Networking Grant scheme; the timing of symposia and grant calls will be aligned to ensure maximum synergies between both programmes.