The Strategic Research Council (SRC) established within the Academy of Finland today decided on the launch of four new programmes for strategic research. The programmes are built around the themes adopted by the Finnish Government in September.
The funding available under the new programmes is applied for in two stages. The first stage, where applicants submit letters of intent, opens on 19 December 2018 and closes on 23 January 2019.
The Finnish-language call text was published today. The English version will be available late next week.
The new SRC programmes are:
- Innovative Materials and Services to Promote Resource Wisdom and Sustainable Development (IMPRES)
- The Evolving Role of Public Authority and the Potential for Steering Society (STEER)
- Culture in an Increasingly Technologically Driven Society (CULT)
- Towards a Sustainable, Healthy and Climate-Neutral Food System (FOOD).
The cross-cutting priority of the 2019 themes is to strengthen the ethical dimension in research.
Per Mickwitz, Chair of the SRC, said: “Strengthening the ethical dimension is a topical priority, because fast-developing technology needs to be supported by active ethical thinking. Ethical perspectives are also essential in, for instance, the distribution of work between the public and the private sectors. It’s important to put research to use for the advancement of society and humankind. Our aim is to incorporate the ethical dimension into the programmes in such a way that relevant ethical considerations cut across all research and interaction activities of the funded projects.”
The new SRC programmes will launch in summer 2019 with a six-year funding period. The progress of the projects will be reviewed at midterm, after which the SRC will decide on the continuation of funding. The projects will be selected by the new SRC, whose term of office will begin at the start 2019.
Applications are submitted by research consortia. To be eligible, a consortium must include at least three subprojects, two organisations and three research fields. The research and interaction activities are presented in the form of work packages. Particular attention must be paid to interlinkages between the work packages and to the added value of the consortium structure. In addition, applicants must thoroughly describe the consortium’s expected results and impact.
The SRC also decided to reinforce the organised management of SRC consortia by requiring that consortium PIs commit themselves with a sufficient level of input to their managerial role.
Mickwitz said: “What a sufficient level of input is, is up to each PI to decide. I’m sure there will be some variation, for example depending on how the management of the consortium is otherwise organised. In any case, it’s clear that the multidisciplinary research and new knowledge combinations pursued in the programmes will not be achieved without goal-oriented management and a sufficient amount of time.”
- IMPRES: Science Adviser Tuomas Katajarinne, tel. +358 295 335 067, firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi
- FOOD: Science Adviser Joona Lehtomäki, tel. +358 295 335 121, firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi
- CULT: Science Adviser Pilvi Toppinen, tel. +358 295 335 064, firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi
- STEER: Science Adviser Milja Saari, tel. +358 295 335 123, firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi
- strategic research in general: Director Jussi Vauhkonen, tel. +358 295 335 114, firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi