Several existing research and training opportunities exist in the United States and China to support international biomedical research cooperation.
For additional tips on locating potential partners for collaborative research between U.S. and Chinese scientists, please see Tips for Collaboration. Funding opportunities include:
Selected U.S. funding programs:
Fogarty International Center
The Fogarty International Center (FIC), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is dedicated to advancing the mission of the NIH by supporting and facilitating global health research conducted by U.S. and international investigators, building partnerships between health research institutions in the U.S. and abroad, and training the next generation of scientists to address global health needs.
- FIC Chronic, Non-Communicable Diseases and Disorders Across the Lifespan Research Training Award
These awards support the development of a collaborative research training program between institutions in the United States and low-and middle-income countries addressing non-communicable diseases including cancer.
- FIC Global Health Research Initiative for New Foreign Investigators (GRIP)
GRIP, in basic biomedical research, supports re-entry of foreign investigators (trained using NIH-supported intramural or extramural programs) to their home countries.
- FIC International Research Ethics Education and Curriculum Development Program
This program supports training opportunities in research ethics related to performing biomedical and clinical research in low- and middle-income countries.
- FIC International Tobacco and Health Research Capacity Building Program
This program supports collaborative research between U.S. and foreign investigators toward reduction of tobacco use. Principal Investigators (PIs) can be U.S. or foreign scientists.
- FIC International Training and Research in Environmental and Occupational Health
This program funds low- and middle-income country researchers in partnership with U.S. institutions for research training in environmental and occupational health.
- FIC Millennium Promise Awards
These awards fund partnerships between institutions in the U.S. and institutions located in low-and middle-income countries to build capacity in non-communicable chronic diseases research.
- FIC Research Collaboration Award
This award provides funding to support collaboration between a foreign scientist and a U.S. investigator who currently receives NIH funding.
- FIC Research Scholars and Fellows Program
This program supports one year of mentored research for clinical investigators at the pre-doctoral (scholars program) or postdoctoral (fellows program) level studying diseases and conditions in developing countries. Either U.S. or low- to middle-income country citizens may participate in this program.
Scholars program: www.fogartyscholars.org/scholars
Fellows program: www.fogartyscholars.org/fellows
National Cancer Institute
The National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), was established under the National Cancer Institute Act of 1937 and is the Federal Government's principal agency for cancer research and training. The National Cancer Act of 1971 broadened the scope and responsibilities of the NCI and created the National Cancer Program. Over the years, legislative amendments have maintained the NCI authorities and responsibilities and added new information dissemination mandates as well as a requirement to assess the incorporation of state-of-the-art cancer treatments into clinical practice. NCI coordinates the National Cancer Program, which conducts and supports research, training, health information dissemination, and other programs with respect to the cause, diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of cancer, rehabilitation from cancer, and the continuing care of cancer patients and the families of cancer patients.
- NCI Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program
This program provides postdoctoral research training in cancer prevention and control, including coursework, seminars, an opportunity to obtain an M.P.H. at an accredited U.S. institution, and a mentored research project at the NCI.
- NCI Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics (DCEG)
DCEG runs several training programs, many which are open to foreign national scientists.
- NCI Short-Term Scientist Exchange Program
This program supports short-term scientific visitors to the NCI.
National Institutes of Health
The National Institutes of Health (NIH), a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, is the nation's medical research agency—making important medical discoveries that improve health and save lives. NIH is the largest source of funding for medical research in the world, creating hundreds of thousands of high-quality jobs by funding thousands of scientists in universities and research institutions in every state across America and around the globe. NIH is made up of 27 Institutes and Centers, each with a specific research agenda, often focusing on particular diseases or body systems. NIH supports many innovative training programs and funding mechanisms that foster scientific creativity and exploration. The goal is to strengthen our nation's research capacity, broaden our research base, and inspire a passion for science in current and future generations of researchers.
- NIH Visiting Program
This program includes a Visiting Fellow program for foreign students who have completed their doctoral degree within the past five years.
National Science Foundation
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 "to promote the progress of science; to advance the national health, prosperity, and welfare; to secure the national defense…". NSF is the funding source for approximately 20 percent of all federally supported basic research conducted by America's colleges and universities. In many fields such as mathematics, computer science and the social sciences, NSF is the major source of federal support.
- NSF East Asia Summer Pacific Institutes For U.S. Graduate Students
This program supports pre-doctoral students to conduct research in participating laboratories in China and other parts of Asia for 8-10 weeks.
Selected Chinese funding programs:
Chinese Academy of Sciences
The Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) is a prestigious basic and applied research organization in China. More than 26 of approximately 100 CAS research institutions across the country conduct biological (including biomedical) research activities. Although not a national funding agency, CAS administers several programs to support international research and training activities within its institutes, including:
- CAS Einstein Professorship Program supports approximately 20 world-class researchers to conduct lecture tours in China. International scientists who participate in this program place a few young Chinese scholars in their laboratory for training.
- CAS Fellowship for Young International Scientists supports early career scientists to work in a CAS laboratory for approximately one year.
- CAS Visiting Professorship for Senior International Scientists supports international scientists at the university professor/associate professor level to work in CAS laboratories for 2-12 months.
- CAS Grant (as Initial Fund) for Key Bilateral/Multilateral Cooperation Projects supports concrete collaborative research activities for 2-3 years. Applications are submitted by CAS institutes only.
Ministry of Science and Technology of the P.R. China
The Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) is the largest scientific funding agency in China, and supports several international collaborations.
National Natural Science Foundation of China
The National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) was established in 1986 as an independent government agency to support investigator-initiated proposals in basic research using a peer-review process. Approximately 10-15% of NSFC grants awarded to domestic investigators can be used to support international cooperation, and NSFC also allocates 3-5% of its total research budget for an International Cooperation Fund. Specific NSFC mechanisms that support international research cooperation include:
- NSFC Fund for Chinese Scholars Abroad Returning for Short Period of Work or Lecture supports overseas Chinese scholars to participate in NSFC funded projects. This program supports living expenses for overseas Chinese scholars during their short-term stay in China to conduct joint research, organize workshops or seminars, and attend international conferences or other related activities.
- NSFC International Academic Conferences Held in China provides funding for international and regional academic conferences which are closely related to priority funding areas of NSFC or to newly emerging scientific disciplines.
- NSFC Joint Research Projects supports joint research activities conducted by Chinese scientists with ongoing projects funded by NSFC and their foreign counterparts. Personnel and/or information exchange costs and research costs can be supported by this fund.
- NSFC Major International Joint Research supports activities to strengthen China's competitiveness in basic research to enhance innovation. Projects supported under this program generally last 3-4 years and funding can be used to support research costs and personnel exchanges.
- NSFC Research Fellowship for International Young Scientists supports postdoctoral scientists under the age of 35 with more than 3 years of international experience to work in China for 6-12 months.
Additional information about NSFC International Activities can be found at: