EPSRC DecarboN8 Network Plus funding call 2: Rapid Response Road-space Reallocation (RRRR)


The EPSRC Energy Programme funded DecarboN8 Network Plus is pleased to announce its second Funding Call.

The COVID-19 lockdown has created unprecedented conditions favourable to radical experimentation with the reallocation of road-space. Across the world, local authorities have created hundreds of miles of temporary cycle paths and footpaths, to provide key workers space to safely commute and to allow all citizens to safely exercise.[1] [2] Many places have now also indicated that a reallocation of road-space to cyclists and pedestrians will be a key part of their climate smart recovery plans.[3] [4] The UK Government has also announced support for this approach.[5]

DecarboN8 is keen to encourage and support local authorities across the North of England to experiment with such measures. To ensure this historic opportunity for data collection is not missed, it has created a new rapid response fund to support the monitoring and evaluation of road-space reallocation measures in the North of England.

Researchers are invited to partner with local authorities to develop proposals. DecarboN8 will fund three researcher-led monitoring and evaluation projects. These will provide each project’s local authority with valuable data, which can be used to inform local plans for a climate smart recovery from COVID-19.

DecarboN8 welcomes expressions of interest from research organisations across the UK, and we encourage applications from Early Career Researchers. Proposals that utilise a place-based approach reflecting the diversity of places, people and journeys will be prioritised. DeraboN8’s focus through this rapid respond fund is developing the North of England as a learning environment for transport decarbonisation research, and proposals must support this goal.


The deadline for expressions of interest is 4pm (GMT) on Wednesday 27 May 2020. The Application Form and full call documentation are available on the DecarboN8 Website.


For this rapid response call, a total of £21,000 (£16,800 at 80% fEC) is available. 3 projects of up to £7,000 (£5600 @ 80% fEC) will be funded.


Key Dates

11 May 2020     Call opens

27 May 2020     4pm (GMT) closing date for Expressions of Interest

28 May 2020     Panel + invitations to full application

11 June 2020    4pm (GMT) closing date for Full Applications (may be extended)

12 June 2020     Panel

19 June 2020     Decisions announced



[1] International Transport Forum. 2020. Re-spacing Our Cities For Resilience [Online, accessed 07/05/2020]. Available from: https://www.itf-oecd.org/sites/default/files/respacing-cities-resilience-covid-19.pdf

[2] Cycling UK. 2020. Safe space for social distancing: FAQ [Online, accessed 07/05/2020]. Available at: https://www.cyclinguk.org/article/safe-space-social-distancing-faq

[3] Sustrans. 2020. Tactical urbanism during Covid-19, and beyond [Online, accessed 07/05/2020] Available at: https://www.sustrans.org.uk/our-blog/opinion/2020/april/tactical-urbanism-during-covid-19-and-beyond/

[4] Transport for Greater Manchester. 2020. Leaders progress bold active travel plans as up to £5m of emergency funding made available as part of coronavirus recovery [Online, accessed 07/05/2020] Available at: https://news.tfgm.com/news/leaders-progress-bold-active-travel-plans-as-up-to-gbp-5m-of-emergency-funding-made-available-as-part-of-coronavirus-recovery

[5] Department for Transport. 2020. Statutory guidance: Traffic Management Act 2004: network management in response to COVID-19 [Online, accessed 11/05/2020] Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/reallocating-road-space-in-response-to-covid-19-statutory-guidance-for-local-authorities/traffic-management-act-2004-network-management-in-response-to-covid-19