The ERAfrica ERA-NET is a component of the EU’s Seventh Framework Programme and its aim is to promote research collaboration between Europe and Africa. ERAfrica is coordinated by France (IRD and CNRS). The Finnish representatives in the network are the Ministry of Employment and the Economy, assisted by the Finnish University Partnership for International Development (UniPID).
The Academy of Finland is involved in the ERAfrica joint project call by funding Finnish researchers’ collaboration with European and African researchers. The call opens on 15 January 2013 with three themes: Interfacing Challenges, Renewable Energy and New Ideas.
The Academy and the Finnish Cultural Foundation can fund Finnish researchers involved in Interfacing Challenges projects. Tekes can fund projects with the Renewable Energy theme. Finland is not involved in funding New Ideas projects.
A precondition for the funding is that the collaboration is carried out between researchers from at least two European and two African countries. The partners shall be researchers from the countries funding the call. The projects may also include researchers from other countries with funding received from other sources.
In the call covering the Interfacing Challenges theme, Finnish researchers must have a European partner from at least one of the following countries (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal or Turkey) and African partners from at least two of the following countries (Burkina Faso, Egypt, Ivory Coast, Kenya and/or South Africa).
The aim is to implement the call process during 2013 and to launch the joint projects in June 2014.
Academy funding will be targeted at supporting researcher networking and mobility. The Academy’s budget for one or more projects will total EUR 150,000 for a maximum of three years.
Proposals for the Interfacing Challenges theme may be submitted for research that is conducted at the interface of key societal challenges where African-European collaboration is also expected to generate added value and potential impact. The research should address a question that is at the interface of two or more societal challenges, focusing on the linkages and relationships between them. Of particular interest are societal challenges that relate to
- food security, water security and energy security
- climate change mitigation, adaptation and preserving the environment (e.g. biodiversity protection)
- development of an information society.
It is regarded as an advantage if the submitted proposals capitalise on existing initiatives and coordinate with national, regional and bi-regional projects pursuing relevant objectives.
Proposals should take an interdisciplinary approach, with the inclusion of a social science perspective especially encouraged. For the purposes of the call, an interdisciplinary approach is defined as incorporating concepts, questions, methods, interpretations, data, etc. from different disciplines to address complex or neglected questions and topics. Applicants can represent any scientific discipline relevant to the aims and objectives of the project. Projects featuring participation by stakeholders involved in the transfer of project outcomes into practice (user community) will be given preference, since the potential for impact from these projects is expected to be greater.
The aim of the call is to fund excellent research that addresses complex problems of global significance; therefore, projects should contribute to knowledge generation and possible solutions to key societal challenges.
Researchers shall submit their proposals by 15 April 2013 in the online submission system of the Common Call Management, which is the International Bureau of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research at the German Aerospace Centre (PT-DLR). The PT-DLR will also be in charge of the evaluation of proposals.
Links to the Interfacing Challenges call documents:
- Terms of Reference for Joint Activity: Interfacing Challenges (pdf)
- Academy of Finland special conditions (pdf)
- Pre-Announcement, further information
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