The primary role of Research Councils UK (RCUK) is to fund research. Each year
a total of around £3 billion is invested in research conducted at UK universities,
Research Council Institutes, and in securing access to international facilities
for UK researchers
This money is used to fund the very best world-class research as judged by independent,
expert peer review.
Together the Research Councils cover the full spectrum of academic disciplines
from the medical and biological sciences to astronomy, physics, chemistry and engineering,
social sciences, economics, and the arts and humanities.
The new knowledge, technologies and information generated from this research
are used by business and industry to develop new products and services, by the NHS
to improve patient care, by Government and regulators to develop better policies
and deliver better public services, and by many other users for social, economic,
environmental and cultural benefit.
There is strength in the diversity of the Research Council system with the separate
identities of each Council providing a strong focus for their individual research
and user communities. Working in partnership with their academic communities, as
well as other research funders and stakeholders including Government and the private
sector, the Research Councils have developed and implemented an extensive and successful
portfolio of flexible funding mechanisms and approaches supporting a huge range
of excellent research.