U21 Global Education Enhancement Fund

Applications Closed: Deadline was Monday 11 May, 12:00 GMT 

Find out about the projects awarded funding

U21 is launching a Global Education Enhancement Fund to support our members in delivering and enhancing higher education for a rapidly changing and uncertain future. Partnerships of two or more U21 member universities can apply for this fund, working together to design better solutions for online teaching, learning and assessment, which can be subsequently shared as resources within the U21 network. The goal of the fund is to strengthen the network’s overall capacity to respond to current and future challenges in global education.

How the Global Education Enhancement Fund Works

The Global Education Enhancement Fund will make awards of $5000 per project partner[1] for proposals to enhance digital capacity within the U21 network, creating best-in-class solutions to virtual teaching, learning, assessment and/or internationalisation.  

Funding may be used for technology set-up costs (such as digital or supporting physical infrastructure), training or course design events. The collaboration does not need to include virtual student exchange or multi-national delivery, although these goals may form part of the project. 

Preference will be given to proposals which:

  • Create tangible resources that can be easily shared with other partners across the network.
  • Address pressing educational/internationalisation needs shared by members.
  • Support member institutions that may not be as advanced in their digital provision as other partners.
  • Produce tangible and shareable outcomes in a relatively short period of time (e.g. 6 - 9 months).

Proposals must meet the following criteria: 

  • Demonstrate collaboration between U21 member universities, with a partnership comprising 2 or more U21 members. Multi-national applications are particularly welcomed. The collaboration does not need to include virtual student exchange or multi-national delivery.
  • Include at least one of the following innovative aspects: 
    • New technology 
    • Using technology in new ways 
    • New course design or structure built around the goal of Global Education/Internationalisation 
    • New approaches to online assessment. 
  • Demonstrate a contribution to a more robust approach to online teaching, learning and assessment for participating universities in the longer term.  
  • Produce tangible outputs within twelve months of receipt of funds. 

Download the application form 

Download the Global Education Fund information on this page as a PDF


Can institutions submit more than one application? 

Yes. However, in any funding call, it is a principle of U21 to include as many eligible partners as possible. 

Can the fund be used to make general research administration contributions within the institution? 

No. This is a small-scale fund for enhancing institutional activity to respond to current challenges, by creating shareable and usable resources. No portion of the fund should be diverted into research grant administration or institutional infrastructure contributions. 

Can the funds be distributed amongst partners on an unequal basis? 

Yes. The overall funding available is US$5000 per institution; however, these funds may be concentrated in a lead institution, or distributed on the basis of work packages. This must be specified in the application. We will confirm with successful applicants that all partners are in agreement as to the distribution of funds. 

Can the funds be used to cover employment? 

The funds may be used to cover employment costs, if additional staff are required to deliver the project. However, it should be noted that the review panel will be looking for evidence of capacity building and innovation, so this resourcing should be directed to generating new, lasting infrastructure and/or materials. We will expect to see a rationale that spending on staff time is the best way of delivering these outcomes for your particular project. 

When will the funding decision be made? 

This fund has been designed for short-term projects in response to current challenges facing universities. As such, we will review applications and communicate the decision as soon as possible. We will aim to do so within four weeks of the 11 May deadline, however this will depend on the number of applications received. 

We understand your proposed timescales will be affected by the speed at which project funding can be distributed, and we will be flexible in our approach to this when reviewing your application. 

[1] Overall project grant will depend on the number of partners - i.e. a partnership of two universities would be awarded $10,000.