How we're funded
Wellcome is a politically and financially independent foundation.
Our founder, Sir Henry Wellcome, was a medical entrepreneur, collector and philanthropist. How we work today reflects the breadth of his interests, and his conviction that health can be improved when research generates, tests and investigates new ideas. Our governance is based on an updated version of Henry’s will.
Today, we have a £26.8 billion investment portfolio which funds all the work we do. In the next five years, we plan to spend around £5 billion helping people across the world explore great ideas.
An example of our approach
One of the world’s biggest challenges is how to be better prepared for the next major epidemic. Wellcome’s response is an example of how we work with academia, philanthropy, businesses, governments and civil society around the world to take on health challenges in many different, coordinated ways.
Here are just a handful of ways we’re helping to outsmart epidemics:
Vaccine development, such as when we co-funded the development of a new Ebola vaccine
Studies such as the Wellcome Global Monitor, which surveys attitudes to science, health and vaccines across the world, informing research and policy
Behavioural projects, such as training health workers(opens in a new tab) to reduce risk of infection while working on the frontline
Social science, including research into the ethics of medical trials involving pregnant women, which was of urgent importance during the Zika virus.
Developing research leaders in regions most affected by infectious disease (as we’ve done through our DELTAS Africa initiative(opens in a new tab))
Advocacy, encouraging governments and global businesses to take part in building a more secure future for global health
Public engagement, including Contagious Cities, an international cultural project supporting local conversations about epidemic preparedness.
Find out how we work to support researchers, policy makers and the public in tackling more of today’s health challenges.