The Newton Prize celebrates outstanding international research partnerships and is an annual £1million fund award

TWO Professors from the University of Huddersfield’s School of Art, Design and Architecture have been shortlisted in the prestigious Newton Prize 2019 awards for their research to protect communities in Indonesia and across the Indian Ocean from tsunami and other coastal dangers

Professor Richard Haigh and Professor Dilanthi Amaratunga, from the University’s Global Disaster Resilience Centre , are experts in reducing the hazards of the built environment after a major disaster has occurred. 

The Newton Prize celebrates outstanding international research partnerships and is an annual £1 million fund awarded for the best research or innovation that promotes the economic development and social welfare of Newton Fund partner countries.  Eligible prize countries for the Newton Prize 2019 are China, Indonesia and the Philippines.  

The Newton Institutional Links grant we acquired provided a platform for us to work with Indonesia and other countries across the Indian Ocean.”  

Professor Richard Haigh

“Being shortlisted for this prestigious award is the culmination of a five-year partnership with Dr Harkunti Rahayu’s team at the Institute of Technology Bandung,” explained Professor Haigh. 

“The Newton Institutional Links grant we acquired provided a platform for us to work with Indonesia and other countries across the Indian Ocean, and help them to develop improved standard operating procedures involved in receiving and processing regional tsunami warning and monitoring information.  Proceeding that we disseminate that warning information to communities at risk,” he said. 

Tackling global challenges 

The Newton Prize enables international research partners to continue working together on solutions to some of the world’s key challenges such as human health, food security and climate change. Research and innovation is a highly effective way to achieve international development goals, tackle global challenges and improve quality of life for people in developing countries as well as the UK. 

The shortlisted projects tackle a range of Sustainable Development Goals and have been peer-reviewed and will be judged by the Newton Prize Committee, chaired by Professor Alice Gast, President of Imperial College. 

“I am very impressed by the pioneering ideas, collaborative research and potential impact of the shortlisted applications for the Newton Prize 2019.” Said Professor Gast. 

“I look forward to working with my fellow committee members to select the overall winners, it will not be an easy decision.” 

The prize fund

Three prizes of up to £200,000 each will be awarded to three projects that demonstrate high-quality research and impact and an additional prize (the Chair’s Award) of up to £500,000 for a project that also demonstrates the best knowledge exchange and partnership development. 

During November 2019 the shortlisted projects will be celebrated at award events taking place in China, Indonesia and the Philippines where the winning project for that country will be announced. 

These events will be followed by a UK reception on the 9 December in London hosted by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and compared by Emily Wilson (@emilyhwilson), Editor of New Scientist magazine. More details to be announced.