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Democratising data: new fund launched for researchers in developing countries

Democratising data: new fund launched for researchers in developing countries

This news was covered in Research Professional News and devex

UK Biobank has launched a new Global Researcher Access Fund that covers application costs of approved researchers at institutes from less wealthy countries and aims to further democratise worldwide access to this biomedical database. 

"We are grateful to all industry donors for their generous philanthropic contributions towards the UK Biobank Global Researcher Access Fund. This marks a significant stride towards enabling researchers in developing countries the same opportunity to advance scientific discovery as their fellow researchers from more economically developed countries."

Dr Lauren Carson, Head of Research Development, UK Biobank

This fund is open to all UK Biobank-approved researchers in countries on UK Biobank’s low-and-middle-income-countries (LMIC) list, which is informed by sources such as the World Bank and is kept under regular review. It is open to all researchers from these regions including researchers who already use UK Biobank data and who may wish to start another project. Applications for access using this fund follow the same process as all other applications.  

Funded researchers can use any of UK Biobank’s data for their approved projects, including whole genome sequencing (WGS) data, whole exome sequencing (WES) data, imaging data, assay data, enhanced measures, and core data. This is tier 3 access and data is available through the UK Biobank Research Analysis Platform (UKB-RAP) for 3 years in the first instance.  

The UK Biobank Global Researcher Access Fund includes generous donations from: AstraZeneca, Bristol Myers Squibb, Johnson & Johnson and Regeneron.  

If you have any questions about using this fund then please contact us on