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Funding criteria and policies

The Research Council is unfortunately unable to fund all top-rated applications, since the increase in the number of applications has outpaced the increase in the Research Council’s funding budget. Against this backdrop, the Research Council has outlined a set of funding criteria and policies that it will systematically apply in making funding decisions and in prioritising between high-quality applications. The criteria and policies are listed below.

General policies

  1. The Research Council aims to support natural sciences and engineering research of a high international standard and the widest possible scope, considering the special characteristics of different research fields.
  2. As a rule, the Research Council’s funding decisions are based on the review reports.
  3. The Research Council supports scientific regeneration by funding new initiatives, such as high-risk, high-gain research, and researchers who are in a buoyant career phase. The Research Council promotes the development of new methods and technical tools, grants funding to PIs at different career stages and to Academy Research Fellows and Postdoctoral Researchers who transfer to Finland, and – in the case of applicants of equal merit – prioritises applicants in the gender minority.
  4. The Research Council supports the utilisation of research results by, for example, considering applicants’ previous merits in the scientific and economic utilisation of research as well as the applications’ relevance for business and industry or other societal sectors in Finland.
  5. The Research Council supports national research cooperation particularly by funding consortium projects and international research cooperation by funding researcher mobility. In addition, the Research Council supports research that makes good use of both Finnish and international research infrastructures.

Criteria and policies for Academy Project funding

When making funding decisions and prioritising between high-quality applications, the Research Council applies the following criteria and policies (set out in order of priority).

Criteria

  1. Scientific quality, new initiatives and potential for breakthroughs
  2. Competence of the researcher/the research team
  3. Research cooperation and mobility

Policies

1. Competence of the researcher/the research team

  • The Research Council pays particular attention to the applicant’s results in the past five years.

2. Utilisation of research results

  • The economic and other societal impact of the research is regarded as an advantage in applying for funding.
  • A working network with end-users of research results will also be regarded as an advantage.

3. Research cooperation and mobility

  • Large-scale international joint projects are an advantage in applying for funding.
  • Research collaboration between universities and research institutes is supported in accordance with the Government Programme.
  • The Research Council also supports researchers and research teams in their collaboration with business and industry.
  • Researcher mobility between research organisations and between research organisations and business companies is regarded as an advantage.
  • To resolve a tie between two applicants, the Research Council will prioritise applicants who have transferred or are transferring to a new research environment.

4. Concurrent funding from other Academy funding schemes

  • Academy Research Fellows and Postdoctoral Researchers may be granted funding under the Academy Project funding scheme.
  • Being a principal investigator for a consortium subproject is not an obstacle to being awarded a project grant, and vice versa.
  • Academy Professors cannot be granted project funding that would overlap with their Academy Professor research grant.

Criteria and policies for Academy Research Fellow funding

Criteria

  1. Applicant’s personal competence
  2. Quality, impact and novelty value of research
  3. Applicant’s mobility, especially quality of previous and planned mobility as well as its added value for the research plan and the applicant’s career

Policies

  1. The Research Council supports the Academy Research Fellows it funds by granting them funding for research costs to the tune of 350,000 euros per five years. The funding will be granted in two parts. The funding for the first three years is a maximum of 210,000 euros and for the last two years a maximum of 140,000 euros.
  2. Although a single site of research may include several research environments, the Research Council is of the opinion that the mobility requirement is not met if a researcher changes research teams within the same field and within the same site of research. This applies both to transfers to a new research environment and to mobility after obtaining a doctoral degree.

Criteria and policies for Postdoctoral Researcher funding

Criteria

  1. Applicant’s personal competence
  2. Quality, impact and novelty value of research
  3. Applicant’s mobility in support of increased independence, especially quality of previous and planned mobility as well as its added value for the research plan and the applicant’s career

Policies

  1. The salary of a Postdoctoral Researcher is determined according to a maximum monthly salary of 3,800 euros. Justified research costs will also be accepted, but the total funding is a maximum of 50,000 euros (see Research funding above).
  2. Although a single site of research may include several research environments, the Research Council is of the opinion that the mobility requirement is not met if a researcher changes research teams within the same field and within the same site of research. This applies both to transfers to a new research environment and to mobility after obtaining a doctoral degree.
Last modified 7 Sep 2017
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