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Research Grant Programme

Who can apply?

Through our research grants, we will help charities and organisations to develop, expand and improve transport related research for disabled people, and produce data and findings that can be freely accessed by all.

Examples of areas where we are focussing our grant making include but are not limited to:

  • Grant funding for research into barriers and challenges faced by disabled people when accessing or using transport.
  • Grant funding for transport related research that identifies good practice and evaluates solutions.
  • Grant funding to conduct research to inform and improve new or existing transport related programmes and product design.

Charities and organisations can apply for grants from £50,000 to £1 million at any point over the next three years.

Why are we doing this? 

Disabled people make 38% fewer journeys than non-disabled people – a figure that hasn’t changed in the last decade.

This “transport accessibility gap” tells us that there is much more that transport providers need to do to make sure that disabled people can travel across road, rail and air like non-disabled people, but to do it right, they need to know what disabled people want and need.

Investment in user-centred research and development can make a large impact for many disabled people.

It opens doors and makes tangible differences to how they access transport in the UK.

That is why we have identified research as a priority investment area.

Over the last year, Motability Foundation has grant funded a number of research related projects, including:

  • User research carried out by disability charities to better understand the problems that disabled people face in the transport system - and how they can potentially be solved.
  • Supporting a PhD scholarship programme at Coventry University for disabled people and people with lived experience of disability.
  • Recently launching the National Centre for Accessible Transport (ncat) which we are funding.

From these projects we established that research is a key area in which we can help other charities and organisations to inform their work.

That could be to support a business or investment case for a new product or service for disabled people, or to influence business, decision makers and Government to do something differently.

Guidance for applicants

If you would like any of the following documents in an alternative format such as Easy Read, please complete our Grants to Organisations and Charities online form and an allocated Grant Manager will get back to you.

To be considered for a grant from the Research Grant Programme, complete the Stage One Application Form within the guidance for applicants section and email the completed form to Should you have any questions, we would be happy to discuss. Complete our online form and an allocated Grant Manager will review and get back to you.

Please note we cannot accept or respond to applications received by any other method.

When you place an application for a charitable grant, it will be allocated to a Grant Manager for consideration. We aim to respond to all Stage One applications within eight weeks of receiving them. Please wait for your Grant Manager to contact you to update you on the status of your application.

Your questions

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