The UK’s independent authority set up to uphold information rights in the public interest, promoting openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals.

This guide is intended to provide applicants with detail of the ICO Grants Programme and how to apply for funding. It also sets out our expectations should your application be successful. 

Organisations are invited to bid for a grant to support independent research and projects. The ICO is seeking proposals that meet one or more of the six strategic goals set out in the ICO’s Information Rights Strategic Plan and provide a clear public benefit with outputs that are open source and re-usable. Examples of areas we are interested in include:

  • Data protection issues and solutions for vulnerable adults and communities.
  • Artificial intelligence, big data and machine learning. In particular, research that would support effective transparency or verifiable audit trails.
  • Data protection safeguards for the ethical use of emerging biometric and facial recognition technology in the private and public sectors.
  • Children’s’ data and privacy including solutions that support the ICO’s Age Appropriate Design Code.
  • Tools and techniques to minimise intrusion and reduce risk when sharing personal data.


This is the supporting information you may need if your application is approved. 


If you'd like more information, please contact the ICO's grants programme.