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The Institute of Physics announces ambitious new strategy and £10 million challenge fund

The Institute of Physics (IOP) has announced an ambitious new strategy to transform the physics landscape for the UK and Ireland, and ensure a thriving physics eco-system that will contribute to innovation, discovery, research, growth and debate in the UK, Ireland and beyond.


Physics has the potential to help resolve many of the world’s most acute challenges including a changing climate, ensuring sustainable water, food and energy supplies, global security and improving global healthcare. Physics also has a vital role to play in helping make the UK and Ireland fit for a new industrial era of science, technology and engineering.

As well as developing significant programmes that will help to meet these challenges, the IOP is also launching a £10 million ‘challenge fund’ that will seek to identify, and fund, projects with partners who share these ambitions and who can help to accelerate change.  

Institute of Physics Chief Executive, Professor Paul Hardaker, commented: ‘Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) play a fundamental role in our society and economy.  The knowledge and ingenuity of scientists and engineers have helped to transform society, energise our economies and improve our health and our quality of life.

‘In the coming years, we will need to depend even more on knowledge and skills from physics and STEM more widely to address the challenges facing us, if we are to continue to improve diagnosis and treatment in healthcare, live more prosperously and sustainably, address significant disparities in access to water and food, resolve our energy needs and protect our biodiversity. In all these ways, and others, physics has the potential to improve our lives.  But we need to act now to ensure we have the people, infrastructure, facilities and funding to unlock this huge potential.’

  • The IOP’s challenge fund will launch in autumn 2019 and will run for five years, more details will be announced in autumn 2019 and organisations can register their interest at challengefund@iop.org.
  • Watch IOP’s new film setting out its mission and goals here.
  • For more information about the IOP strategy visit www.iop.org/strategy.