Cancer

Call for applications

The sixth call for applications under the GACD banner focuses on primary and secondary prevention of cancer. Please check details on funding requirements below. Before submitting your application, please read the additional information for the funding agency you are applying to.
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Background

Specific Challenge

The Global Alliance for Chronic Diseases (GACD) funding call will focus on implementation research proposals for the primary and/or secondary prevention of cancer in Low- and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs) and/or in populations facing conditions of vulnerability in High-Income Countries (HICs).

Cancer is becoming one of the most important public health problems worldwide and a leading cause of premature death. In 2018, an estimated 18.1 million people were diagnosed with cancer and 9.6 million died from it. Predictions suggest that 30 million people will die from cancer each year by 2030, of which 75% will be in LMICs. This increase may be attributed to aging societies, high prevalence of cancer risk behaviours, as well as the epidemiologic transition and socio-economic inequalities that result in untimely care seeking, care provision and poor quality care in many LMIC settings.

It is estimated that 30 – 50% of all cancers are preventable. Specifically, one-third of global cancer deaths are attributable to behavioural risk factors, such as tobacco and alcohol use, low fruit and vegetable intake, obesity and lack of physical activity. Tobacco use alone accounts for around 22% of cancer mortality. Around 25% of cancer incidence in LMICs is attributable to vaccine-preventable infections (HPV and HBV). Within HICs, similar patterns are seen in populations experiencing conditions of vulnerability.

One challenge to reducing this burden of cancer in populations experiencing disparities worldwide is to overcome barriers in implementation of basic cancer prevention and care strategies. Implementation of effective, evidence-based interventions has been central to cancer control in many HICs. Yet, in LMICs and other low-resource environments, such interventions are under-used or have limited impact because of implementation challenges that have yet to be identified, researched and addressed.

Implementation science is the study of strategies to make evidence-based interventions successful in real-world settings, with the aim of improving access to, and use of, these interventions in populations. In order to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 3.4 (‘to reduce premature mortality from NCDs by one third by 2030…’) , implementation research and healthcare efforts are needed to identify and scale-up the best strategies to prevent and control cancers in LMIC countries and among populations facing conditions of vulnerability in HICs.

Scope

Proposals must focus on implementation research for the primary and/or secondary prevention of cancer in LMICs and/or in populations facing conditions of vulnerability in HICs. Proposals must build on evidence-based interventions (including cost-effectiveness) for the respective population groups under defined contextual circumstances. Research activities should focus on their implementation in real-life settings. The proposed interventions should be gender-responsive.

The aim should be to adapt and scale-up the implementation of these intervention(s) in accessible, affordable and equitable ways in order to improve the prevention and early diagnosis of cancer in real-life settings. Interventions should meet conditions and requirements of the local health and social system context and address any other contextual factors identified as possible barriers.

Each proposal should:

  • Focus on implementation research addressing prevention and/or early diagnosis strategies derived from existing knowledge about effective interventions.
  • For screening interventions, the local capacity and accessibility of confirming diagnoses and treatment must be ensured. The health care pathway for referral of positive cases must be included.
  • Include a strategy to test the proposed model of intervention and to address the socioeconomic and contextual factors of relevance to the targeted region and community.
  • Lead to a better understanding of key barriers and facilitators at local, national and/or international level that affect prevention and/or early diagnosis of cancer.
  • Align with the priorities in national/regional cancer control programme, if any.
  • Propose a pathway to embed the intervention into local, regional or national health policy and practice, addressing:
    1. A strategy to include policy makers and local authorities (possibly by inclusion within the research team), as well as other relevant stakeholders such as community groups, patient groups, formal and informal carers and any other group, where ever relevant from the beginning of the project, which will contribute to the sustainability of the intervention after the end of project.
    2. Relevance of project outcomes/evidence for scaling up the intervention at local, national and/or international level, including consideration of the social, cultural and economic contexts.
  • Include assessments of accessibility, reach, equity and health economic assessments as an integral part of the proposed research.

The following types of projects DO NOT fall within the scope of this funding call:

  • Etiological work, mechanistic, or epidemiological research, which is not part of a wider study to develop implementation science approaches.
  • Replication of effectiveness studies and clinical trials testing the efficacy or effectiveness of new or established pharmacological agents (or combination of agents).
  • Clinical trials of new diagnostic tools, devices or pharmacological agents. Phase I or Phase II trials.

Research funded under GACD involves regular exchange of research findings and information across participating projects by means of cross-project working groups and annual joint meetings. Wherever feasible, projects should harmonise and standardise their data collection and exchange that data. Applicants must budget for the annual costs of two team members’ participation in one Annual Scientific Meeting (location to vary annually). Applicants must budget their involvement in GACD working groups and other GACD wide activities, beyond the life cycle of their research project.

Expected Impact (one of or combinations of)

  • Advance local, regional or national cancer prevention and/or early diagnostic health policies, alleviating the global burden of cancer;
  • Improve affordability and tailor to local settings prevention and/or early diagnosis;
  • Establish the contextual effectiveness of cancer intervention(s) for prevention and/or early diagnosis, including at health systems level;
  • Provide evidence and recommendations to national programmes and policies focusing on prevention, screening, and/or early diagnosis;
  • Inform health service providers, policy and decision makers on effective scaling up of cancer interventions for prevention and/or early diagnosis at local, regional, and/or national levels, including affordability aspects for users and health providers;
  • Reduce health inequalities and inequities, including, but not limited to, consideration of characteristics such as socioeconomic circumstances, gender and age, where relevant in the prevention and/or early diagnosis of cancer at both local and/or global levels;
  • Maximise the use of existing relevant programmes and platforms (e.g. research, data, and delivery platforms);
  • Contribute to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 3.4.

Peer review criteria

Relevance and Quality of Project

  • There is sound evidence that stakeholders, such as decision-makers and service delivery partners, have been actively involved in the research process including the selection and adaptation of the intervention and the research design; and
  • There will be demonstrable engagement with the public and/or patient and community groups or other relevant stakeholder groups.

Quality of Team

  • The multidisciplinary team members have a high-quality track record in fields related to the proposed implementation research and the team has the right balance of expertise given the goal(s) of the research project;
  • There is evidence that the research will be jointly managed by researchers from HICs and LMICs, where applicable;
  • Early career investigators are part of the team and a strong training plan for research capacity-building is included;
  • There is sound evidence that stakeholders, such as decision-makers and service delivery partners, have been actively involved in the research process including the selection and adaptation of the intervention and the research design; and
  • There will be demonstrable engagement with the public and/or patient and community groups or other relevant stakeholder groups.

Feasibility of Project

  • Major scientific, technical or organizational challenges have been identified, and realistic plans to tackle them are outlined;
    Proposed intervention strategies are relevant to the socio-political, cultural, policy and economic contexts of the study settings and the proposal demonstrates understanding of the contextual factors (e.g. health systems, intersectoral policy, governance, leadership) affecting implementation, indicating how those factors and their impact will be analysed;
  • Inequities and equity gaps, including age and gender, have been taken into account;
  • Appropriate measures of evaluation have been included. Projects that are able to track long-term clinical, public health, policy and/or health system outcomes are expected;
  • There is a clear governance plan, including evidence of ultimate accountability, shared strategic leadership, transparency in decision making, management of conflicts of interest, clearly defined roles/responsibilities/contributions, demonstrating that all key participants are highly engaged and committed;
  • There is an appropriate collaboration plan, including but not limited to communication and coordination, management and administration, conflict prevention/resolution, quality improvement, budget and resource allocation and publication approach among team members.

Potential Impact

  • The expected impacts, as listed in the scope above, are identified;
  • The project demonstrates alignment with international and/or national commitments to advance primary and/or secondary cancer prevention strategies;
  • The project appropriately leverages existing programs and platforms (e.g. research, data, delivery platforms), if relevant;
  • There is potential for sustaining intervention at scale; and
  • There is potential for the translation of the findings into different settings.

Further information & resources

GACD Research Network

The GACD aims to coordinate research on chronic diseases at a global level in order to enhance knowledge exchange across individual projects, and to better understand the impact of socio-economic, cultural, geopolitical and policy factors on the effectiveness and scalability of interventions, so as to appropriately adapt health interventions to different geographical, economic and cultural settings. Research under GACD involves regular exchange of research findings and information across participating projects by means of cross-project working groups and annual joint meetings.

Applicants must budget for the costs of having two team members participate in one annual face-to-face meeting of the GACD Research Network (location to vary annually). Attendance at this meeting is mandatory for two team members, with at least one participant from the LMIC team where relevant. Teams are strongly encouraged to include one junior team member in each annual meeting.

Common indicators

The GACD funding agencies aim to harmonise the research and outcomes assessment of GACD funded projects in order to maximise the potential for learning across the network and the impact of the initiative as a whole. To this end:

  • All funded teams are expected to use explicit indicators and measures of project context, reach, outcomes evaluation and scale-up potential in their plans and protocols;
  • All teams should include Implementation Research outcomes (e.g. feasibility, fidelity and/or adaptation, spread and/or penetration, acceptability, sustainability, uptake, and cost effectiveness) and where relevant, include Service outcomes: (e.g. Efficiency, Safety, Effectiveness, Equity, Patient-centeredness, Timeliness);
  • Shortly after notification of award, grantees will be given the opportunity to agree upon a common set of implementation and outcome indicators to employ across all projects, as well as sets of additional indicators that may be used by groups of similar types of projects.
  • GACD maintains a set of common indicators developed by consensus by GACD Hypertension and Diabetes Research Programmes. This is an evolving document and where appropriate, programmes are encouraged to use the indicators and measures in this document.

Implementation research focus

The GACD’s calls for applications have a specific focus on implementation research. We have put together a list of some resources that may help you in preparing your proposals, which are available on our Implementation Science page.

Resources

Find a collaborator also on the European Commission’ website

Funding among GACD funders

Some GACD funders explicitly encourage applications involving team members from more than one GACD member country, and will support successful proposals through co-funding between the appropriate funding agencies. Applicants will be required to meet the eligibility criteria for the relevant funding agencies and the agency’s specific funding conditions.

If a co-investigator is based in one of the GACD partner countries, then the proposal may be eligible for co-funding. If the co-investigators are based in one of these countries, it is essential that you contact GACD at funding@gacd.org as soon as possible so that we can discuss potential co-funding arrangements. Please include your name, your research institution, your co-investigators’ names and research institutions, the intended title of your project and an estimation of the costs that would be required for each investigator.

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How to apply

Please see the following information on how to apply and on the funders' requirements. Please note that applicants may not apply to multiple funding agencies with the identical project or proposal. For those seeking co-funding, please contact funding@gacd.org to discuss specific arrangements.

  • Secretariat of Government of Health (MinSal)

    • Country Argentina
    • Application open date 2019-09-01
    • Application deadline 2019-10-30
    • Eligibility This funder has a two-step application process. Please see 'More information' for further details.
    • Budget Total budget for this Call is ARS 115,960,000 (equiv. to USD 2,000,000).
    • Resources
    Apply now
  • National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)

    • Country Australia
    • Application open date 2019-12-04
    • Application deadline 2020-04-30
    • Eligibility Proposals must be submitted through an NHMRC approved Administering Institution using GACD Submission Portal.
    • Budget Total budget for this Call is AUS 5,000,000 (equiv. to USD 3,400,000).
    • Resources
    Apply now
  • São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP)

    • Country Brazil
    • Application open date 2019-11-01
    • Application deadline 2020-04-30
    • Eligibility Research Institution in the State of São Paulo. Please check your eligibility with FAPESP first before submitting your proposal. Please see 'More information' for further details.
    • Budget Total budget for this Call is R$ 900,000 (equiv. to USD 218,000).
    • Resources
    Apply now
  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)

    • Country Canada
    • Application open date 2020-01-07
    • Application deadline 2020-02-25
    • Eligibility This funder has a two-step application process with pre-proposals due in Feb'20. Successful applicants would be notified by 26 Mar'20.
    • Budget The maximum amount per grant is CAD 400,000 (equiv. to USD 300,000) per year for up to 5 years, for a total of CAD 2,000,000 (equiv. to USD 1,500,000) per grant.
    • Resources
  • European Commission (EC)

    • Country EU
    • Application open date 2019-07-01
    • Application deadline 2020-04-07
    • Eligibility Please see 'More information' for further details.
    • Budget Total budget for this Call is EUR 20,000,000 (equiv. to USD 22,000,000).
    • Resources
    Apply now
  • Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)

    • Country India
    • Application open date 2019-11-01
    • Application deadline 2020-04-30
    • Eligibility All institutions with valid SIRO certificate issued by DSIR. All projects submitted must include at least one co-investigators from another GACD country. Please see 'More information' for further details.
    • Budget Total budget for this Call is INR 30,000,000 (equiv. to USD 420,000).
    • Resources
    Apply now
  • Health Research Council (HRC)

    • Country New Zealand
    • Application open date 2019-12-15
    • Application deadline 2020-04-30
    • Eligibility The Principal Investigator must be hosted by a NZ institution which is eligible for HRC funding.
    • Budget Total budget for this Call is NZD 2,000,000 (equiv. to USD 1,280,000).
    • Resources
  • South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC)

    • Country South Africa
    • Application open date 2019-11-01
    • Application deadline 2020-04-30
    • Eligibility The South African applicants are required to follow either the MRC UK or CIHR’s instructions to submit their applications to be considered for reviewing and funding.
    • Budget Total budget will be determined by the co-funding conditions.
    • Resources
  • Health Systems Research Institute (HSRI)

    • Country Thailand
    • Application open date 2019-11-01
    • Application deadline 2020-04-30
    • Eligibility Please see 'More information' for further details.
    • Budget Total budget for this Call is USD 150,000 per year.
    • Resources
    Apply now
  • Medical Research Council (MRC) and National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)

    • Country United Kingdom
    • Application open date 2019-11-01
    • Application deadline 2020-04-30
    • Eligibility The Principal Investigators must be hosted by a UK institution which is eligible for UK MRC funding. All projects submitted must include co-investigators from LMIC/-s where the work will take place. Please see 'More information' for further details.
    • Budget Total budget for this Call is GBP 6,000,000 (equiv. to USD 7,760,000).
    • Resources
    Apply now
  • National Institutes of Health (NIH)

    • Country USA
    • Application open date 2019-12-15
    • Application deadline 2020-04-30
    • Eligibility Information on eligibility will be provided in December.
    • Budget Total budget for this Call is yet TBD.
    • Resources
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