Making science work for development

SCOR Board

What is the SCOR Board?

The Strategic Coherence of ODA-funded Research (SCOR) Board is a new advisory mechanism, which will have a significant influence on the strategic delivery of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) funding for research for international development.  By bringing together the funding, expertise and experience of major UK funders of international development, the SCOR Board will allow the UK, for the first time, to have a high-level strategic coherence of its ODA-funded research, ensuring maximum impact.

Why do we need a SCOR Board?

The UK Government is committed to spending 0.7% of Gross National Income on international development. This commitment provides an unprecedented opportunity to tackle global development challenges, and research plays a central role in the UK’s development mission.  

Since 2015, the UK Aid Strategy and Comprehensive Spending Review have increased funding on international development research and spread it across a greater number of government departments and research councils.  The multiple, new sources of research funding for international development provide an important opportunity for the UK. 

To make the most of this new approach, the main players will come together through the SCOR Board. They will develop a common strategic vision to provide coherence and focus their work where it is necessary. By increasing collaboration, the SCOR Board will assist major funders to avoid duplication or conflicting initiatives, and to fill research gaps to tackle important global challenges.

Which UK funders will be on the Board?

The funding bodies involved at this stage are:

  • Department for International Development; on behalf of all devolved administrations (i.e. Scottish Government, Welsh and Northern Ireland Assemblies)
  • Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy
  • Department of Health
  • UK Research and Innovation (incorporating the existing Research Councils, Innovate UK and the research funding roles of the Higher Education Funding Council for England)
  • Wellcome
  • Independent non-affiliated experts to be recruited in 2018

What has the SCOR Board done so far and what happens next?

A SCOR Board Chair was appointed in September 2017 and a new UKCDS Executive Director was appointed in December 2017 (to start in mid-January 2018). Further information on the SCOR Board will be shared in due course.