The Academy of Finland’s Research Council for Natural Sciences and Engineering today decided to grant Academy Project funding for 70 research projects. The funding, primarily granted for four years, totals some 39.5 million euros. The application success rate (the proportion of applications funded) was 15 per cent.
The Research Council had 464 research plans reviewed following the September 2017 call. Most of the applications were reviewed in 28 panels of international experts. High-level international peer review is the Academy’s key tool for identifying the best and most promising research projects.
Professor Leena Paavilainen, Chair of the Research Council for Natural Sciences and Engineering, said: “The Research Council supports natural sciences and engineering research by placing particular emphasis on a wide thematic coverage. The most important funding criterion is the scientific quality of the proposed research. We also pay particular attention to new research initiatives and breakthrough potential. Other criteria that are considered include the competence of the researchers and the research teams and their collaboration and mobility.”
As part of an ongoing development process targeting the Academy’s review practices, a model was tested in this call where the review panels both rated and ranked the applications (only those with rating 5 or 6) assigned to them. The Research Council used this information to support its decision-making.
“We received several applications that were excellent in terms of scientific quality, and many of them included new and bold research initiatives. At the same time, however, we’re slightly concerned about some of the fields that are important to Finland. For example, the reviewers found the applications concerning wood-based biomass processing lacking in scientific quality. But we were very pleased to see so many excellent applications in mechanical engineering, medical engineering and biomaterials research,” Paavilainen said.
The funded projects will explore topics such as predictive brain image analysis, nitrogen recovery from sludge and other organic waste, machine learning methods for analysing biospheric change, how augmented reality affects eating experiences, materials that utilise waste heat, and dark matter and dark energy.
More information and inquiries
- View the list of funded projects
- Science Adviser Jukka Tanskanen, tel. +358 295 335 071, firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi
- Science Adviser Timo Lehtinen, tel. +358 295 335 054, firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi
- Senior Science Adviser Samuli Hemming, tel. +358 295 335 024, firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi
- Science Adviser Jenni Heino, tel. +358 295 335 030, firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi