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Research plan guidelines


Your research plan should be structured following the instructions given below. To ensure the uniformity and quality of the review process, applications must be comparable. Please make sure that your research plan provides answers to the questions raised in the review.

The text part of the research plan (items 1–9) can be no more than twelve pages (Times New Roman 12 pt or equivalent). In addition, the bibliography (item 10 of the research plan) must not exceed two pages. Also, make sure that the research plan remains legible after you convert it into PDF format.

Structure and content of the research plan

The application will be reviewed by international experts. The research plan must include the following information:

1. Principal investigator (PI), project title, site of research, date of research plan

2. Rationale in brief

  • Significance of the project in relation to current knowledge: How is the project linked to previous international and national research? How will the project advance or renew the state of the art?
  • How is the project linked to previous research by the PI/the research team, or to some other research?
  • If the call has a specific objective (e.g. Academy Programme calls): How does the proposed research match the call and its objectives?

3. Scientific objectives and expected impact

3 A. Scientific objectives

  • Objectives of the project and their theoretical and methodological underpinnings
  • Hypotheses or research questions
  • Expected research results and their anticipated scientific impact, potential for scientific breakthroughs and for the renewal of science and research

3 B. Effects and impact beyond academia

  • Reach and potential utilisation value of the research beyond the scientific community
  • Self-assessment of the expected societal impact of the research in the long or short term

3 C. Publication plan

  • Plan for publishing of research results, dissemination and communication to the scientific community, potential end-users and the general public, including open access issues

4. Research methods and material, support from research environment

  • Research methods, described so as to explain how they will contribute to answering the research questions/confirming the hypotheses, or how they will support the chosen approach
  • Research material to be used and its significance for the research project; justification for the research material and description of how the data will be collected and used. Enclose a separate data management plan outlining data management, storage, access and rights.
  • What kind of tangible support will the project receive from local, national and international research environments?
  • Use of research infrastructures, description of how the project benefits from such use (the infrastructures are also entered in the online application under Infrastructures)
  • Critical points for success, alternative implementation strategies

5. Ethical issues

  • Description of ethical issues (e.g. ethical governance procedures, informed consent, anonymity of subjects, withdrawal from research) concerning the chosen topic, methods and data, as well as any research permits or information on pending permit applications

6. Implementation: schedule, budget, distribution of work

  • Schedule for the research
  • Justifications for the total cost estimate specified in the application, by type of expenditure (budget table with justifications). Costs that do not pass through the books of the site of the research must not be included in the total costs.
  • Names and tasks of project staff, and their salary costs (with justifications) included in the application to the Academy. If the names are not known, enter N.N.
  • In research projects (Academy Projects, projects in programmes), also include: estimate of the PI’s working hours on the project
  • If funding (max. 12 months) is applied for to cover the PI’s salary: give clear, research-specific reasons for the salary
  • If the PI does not have a permanent employment relationship, include a salary plan for the PI for the entire funding period

7. Research team and collaborative partners

  • Merits of research team members that are relevant to the project
  • Key national and international collaboration, and its significance for project implementation (partners are entered on the online application under Partners)

8. Research careers and researcher training

  • Advancing the research career of the applicant (or other researchers to be funded)
  • Researcher training, including arrangements for teaching and supervision, and degrees to be completed within the project
  • Promotion of equality

9. Mobility plan for the funding period

  • Description of researcher mobility from Finland (or to Finland or between organisations in Finland) that has already been agreed, including information on the objectives and duration of visits. Also, justify how the visits or work periods elsewhere contribute to the implementation of the research plan. This information is also entered on the online application under Mobility, with invitations appended to the application under Appendices.

10. Bibliography

  • Convert the research plan into PDF format and append it to the online application under Appendices. Name the attachment file as follows: yoursurname_research plan.

Approved 29 June 2017

Last modified 14 Aug 2017
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