British Council Kenya Newton Fund

British Council

The Newton Fund is a UK government £375 million five-year initiative to fund co-operation between the UK and 17 active partner countries: Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Egypt, India. Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Peru, Philippines, South Africa, Thailand, Turkey, Vietnam.

Kenya is one of the three countries in Africa to have the Newton Fund. The fund is known as Newton-Utafiti (Utafiti is the Swahili word for Research)

The funding promotes the long-term economic development and welfare of people in partner countries and unlocks new opportunities for higher education institutions to develop partnerships in research, science and innovation.

The British Council, the UK Higher Education International Unit, Research Councils and many other partners are delivering the Fund. Find out more about the Newton Utafiti-Fund or visit Newton Fund.

 Newton- Utafiti

The Newton-Utafiti Partnership Programme is a joint programme launched in 2016 by the UK Government and the Government of the Republic of Kenya.  Each side will provide equal funding on what is referred to as Matched Funding.

The programme forms part of the Newton Fund, a £735 million fund administered by the UK’s Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. The Newton Fund is part of the UK’s Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment. Through the Fund, the UK will use its strength in research and innovation to promote the economic development and social welfare of partner countries.

By working together on bilateral and multilateral programmes the UK and Kenya hope to develop existing contacts and build strong, sustainable, systemic relationships in research and innovation. The Newton-Utafiti Partnership Programme is delivered by the Ministry of Education through the National Research Fund, for Kenya, and the British Council, for the UK. 

The programme will initially support innovative research partnerships between institutions and capacity building and networking with a focus on key priority areas:

  • Food Security 
  • Health and health systems
  • Sustainable and Renewable Energy 
  • Environment and Climate Change 
  • Manufacturing for SMEs 
  • Governance and Conflict resolution related to development 
  • Cross-Cutting issues such as gender mainstreaming, big data, social science interface, Innovation & Entrepreneurship skills, technical skills, education, basic sciences


For more information about the Newton Fund, please visit the Newton Fund webpage. The British Council website has information about calls being launched across all partner countries. For more information on the Newton-Utafiti Partnership Programme, please email


Punguza Hewa Kaa; Partners in Carbon research students at the Gazi bay site  ©

Frank Ogallo

Grants Awarded


Grants for research and innovation collaborations between the UK and Kenyan institutions at the group, departmental or institutional level.


University of Nairobi  University of Strathclyde sustainable health interventions to tackle the emerging threat of antimicrobial resistance and the rapid rise in non-communicable diseases
Kenya Marine & Fisheries Research Institute Edinburgh Napier University Punguza hewa kaa: Partners in Carbon. The project will establish Gazi bay as a centre of excellence for community carbon management that will train and inspire others.  
Centre for Human Rights & Policy Studies Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex This project will establish a Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) Research Hub
International Centre of Insects and Ecology University of Liverpool

Development of microbe-based strategies for improved bee health

University of Nairobi  University of Leicester Positive impact on the social and economic welfare of vulnerable populations in Nairobi through the improvement of outdoor air quality


Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology The Pirbright Institute Establishing field Data-driven vaccine platform for Newcastle disease virus in poultry: Step towards poverty alienation and food security in Kenya    
Technical University of Kenya  University of Glasgow Development of a portable trigeneration energy system for domestic use in Kenya
Mount Kenya University University of Hull Pathogen point of care analysis
University of Eldoret Brtish Geological Survey Aquaculture: Pathway to food security in Kenya 
Meru University of Science and Technology Aston University Paradigm shift in faecal sludge management in Kenya for environmental management and food security
University of Nairobi University of Southampton Innovative composite roofing/pavement product development through the blending of plastic waste & sand quarry by-products
Strathmore University University of Edinburgh Enhanced food security and afforestation through novel approaches to irrigation
Kenyatta University  University of Southampton Tackling the data gaps and needs for the health and well being of older persons in Kenya