- up to 400,000 euros per project
- applied for by a scientific research organisation; project must have a PI
The Academy of Finland takes care of the review of the scientific quality of sport science research project applications submitted to the Finnish Ministry of Education, Science and Culture. The Ministry makes the funding decisions and takes care of the payment of funds. The review cooperation concerns new applications for funding (i.e. discretionary government grants) addressed to the Ministry. Applications are submitted in the Academy’s online services. We will forward the review reports to the Ministry.
The principal investigator of the project must have obtained a doctoral degree.
The review of applications follows the Academy’s practices and criteria. We mainly use foreign experts as reviewers. We ask you to submit your application in English to facilitate international peer review and ensure an equal and smooth processing of applications. In addition to scientific quality, the review will focus on how the applications meet the policy lines indicated in the Ministry’s application guidelines. This aspect will be assessed by the National Sports Council, which will submit its statement to the Ministry.
The Ministry will make the funding decisions in spring 2021. The funding period can start as early as 1 January 2021. Due to the Ministry’s decision schedule, however, the recommended start date is 1 April 2021.
If the translated English or Swedish version of the call text is in conflict with the Finnish call text, the Finnish version should always be considered primary.
Read the full call text on this page. Click on the link below to print the text or save it in PDF format.
The Finnish Ministry of Education, Science and Culture is keen to fund research that is highly applicable. It supports research into themes defined in its policy document on sport science.
Detailed descriptions of the current themes and policies are available in the Ministry’s call text.
The scientific review of applications follows the Academy of Finland’s review practices and criteria. The Ministry will make the final funding decisions.
The applicant is a scientific research organisation.You should enter as the applicant the organisation where the research is mainly carried out or where it is coordinated (site of research).The project should name a PI who is responsible for carrying out the project and coordinating the funding.The PI must have a doctoral degree.
In accordance with the Finnish Act on Discretionary Government Transfers, a research project cannot receive simultaneous Ministry and Academy funding for the same purpose. Nevertheless, if applying for funding for different parts of a large-scale project simultaneously from both the Ministry and the Academy, you must address the applications to both agencies and with different research plans.
We will not process an application if the applicant has been found guilty of research misconduct in the three years preceding the year of the call.
Funding cannot be granted to a person who has participated in the planning of the call to an extent likely to give them a comparative advantage over other applicants.
The funding period may begin on 1 April 2020 at the earliest. You may use the funding until the end of the year following the funding decision. The Ministry will make the funding decisions in spring 2021. The Ministry will fund an individual project for no more than three years.
Discretionary government grants awarded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture may cover a maximum of 95% of the project’s eligible costs. Even together with other public aid, the grant must not exceed the amount of eligible costs. Eligible costs are defined in the funding decision and its appendices.
The salaries to be covered with the grant must be determined according to the usual salary level of the site of research.
A maximum of 15% of the Ministry grant can be used for the project’s overheads, which cover the necessary basic facilities for the project receiving research funding. Though determined based on the nature of the research, they are usually the same as those available to other research staff at the institution: office and laboratory premises, equipment (including computer equipment) and telecommunications, telephone, mailing, copying and library services.
The grant can cover, for example, the following direct research costs:
- research team salaries, including the PI’s salary
- essential implementation costs (materials, supplies, goods)
- participation in conferences and meetings (up to 5,000 euros per year)
- other expenses.
The Ministry’s current policies as well as the eligible costs are presented in more detail in the Ministry’s application guidelines.
What is required from the site of research?
We require that the site of research (e.g. university) provides the research project with all necessary basic facilities. These are determined based on the nature of the research and are the same as those available to other research staff at the site: office and laboratory premises, equipment (incl. computer equipment), and telecommunications, telephone, mailing, copying and library services. When accepting the funding, the site of research is responsible for ensuring that necessary statements and permits from ethics committees have been obtained before the start of the project. Read more in the guidelines on the commitment by site of research.
Read the detailed guidelines for using funding in the Ministry's application guidelines.
The project’s cost estimate is presented on a separate appendix (Ministry’s appendix form 14 for the 2021 call). An estimate of the annual need for funding by type of expenditure is entered on the form. Also include a funding plan that shows all funding granted for the project as well as funding that will be provided by the site of research if the project is launched. Discretionary government grants awarded by the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture may cover a maximum of 95% of the project’s eligible costs.
How to submit and supplement the application
The deadline is non-negotiable. The deadline for applications is 30 September 2020 at 16.15 Finnish time.
Make sure to submit the application in good time before the deadline. The system will only accept applications that contain all obligatory information.
You can edit and supplement the application until the deadline. You can make changes to a submitted application (e.g. change appendices), but you must make them before the deadline. If you notice that your application lacks important information after the deadline, immediately get in touch with the call’s contact person at the Academy of Finland, so that they can reopen the application for you. Make sure to re-submit the application after you have supplemented it. We will consider the additions insofar as it is possible in view of the review and decision-making process. We may ask you to supplement the application. If you do not supplement the application by the given deadline, we may decide not to process it. You must make sure that your contact details (email address) are up to date.
How the application becomes pending
According to section 17 of the Finnish Administrative Procedure Act and section 8 of the Act on Electronic Services and Communication in the Public Sector, the sender is responsible for the application arriving by the set deadline. An application becomes pending at the Academy when the online application and the obligatory appendices have been submitted in the online services. The system will confirm a successful submission by sending an email to the address you have provided.
Publicity and data protection
Except for the research plan, plan of intent, abstract and interim report, which are primarily confidential, the application and its appendices are public documents. For example, the CV is a public document and as such must not include any confidential information. This publicity is based on the Finnish Act on the Openness of Government Activities. The Academy is committed to following regulations on data protection. The GDPR-compliant privacy statement concerning the research funding process is available on our website under Data protection.
The application consists of forms completed in the online services and PDF appendices. As an applicant, you have the right to submit your application in Finnish or Swedish, but we ask that you to submit it in English to facilitate the international review.
Most of the links below take you to the A–Z index of application guidelines on our website.
The online application contains the following parts
- Personal data
- Degrees (most recent one first); parental leaves etc. may be filled in under ‘Additional information’
- Titles of docent and professorships
- CV following the template, no more than two pages
- Details on the site of research
- Title of research project in English and Finnish/Swedish
- Research fields (at least one, no more than five). See the research field classification.
- Keywords in English and Finnish/Swedish
- Maximum length 2,500 characters including spaces
- Brief overview of scientific and societal objectives, research methods and data as well as expected research results and impact
- Read more about the Abstract
- Maximum length 12 pages
- See the guidelines on the structure of the research plan. The research plan for sport science research projects applying for funding from the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture follows the research plan for an Academy Project.
- See the how-to guides for the online services
Most relevant publications
- Up to ten of your most important project-relevant publications
- You can retrieve publication details from the VIRTA publication information service. See the how-to guides for the online services.
- Details on publications may also be entered manually. Obligatory information: author(s), title, year of publication, name of series/journal, type of publication (will not show in the PDF version of the application)
- Enter information on planned national and international mobility within the project, itemised by person.
- See more information on mobility.
- Project collaborators, itemised by collaborator (name, organisation, country)
- Describe the collaborators’ project-relevant merits and the justifications for choosing them in section 3.2 of the research plan.
- If necessary, append a letter of commitment. See the guidelines on the letter of commitment.
- Ethical permit for project (yes/no)
- Found guilty of research misconduct (yes/no). We will not process a funding application if the applicant has been found guilty of research misconduct in the three years preceding the year of the call.
- The research ethics description is entered under section 4.1 of the research plan.
- See the ethical guidelines.
Public project description
- Maximum length 1,000 characters including spaces
- Popular and reader-friendly description of the research project in English and Finnish/Swedish
- The project description helps the funder to disseminate information on the research project. The project description is also stored in the National Research Information Hub, which will make available information on research conducted in Finland.
- Read the guidelines on the public project description.
- You can authorise another person to supplement or view your application.
- Start by entering the person’s name in the field.
- The person must have set up an account in the Academy’s online services (SARA).
- You cannot authorise more than one person at a time to edit a field in your application, and you cannot edit that same field while the authorisation is active.
- Do not authorise yourself.
- See technical instructions on the authorisation process in the how-to guides for the online services.
- Appendices must be PDF files. See the necessary forms in the Ministry’s application guidelines.
- Complete list of publications for the PI. Read the guidelines on the structure of the list of publications.
- Sport science research funded by Ministry of Education, Science and Culture, appendix form 14 for 2020 call
- Research plan following the template (no more than 12 pages); append only if the research plan has not been filled in on the tab ‘Research plan’. See the guidelines on the structure of the research plan.
- Invitation letter for research visit. Invitation by host organisation (e.g. university or research institute), if the work or part of it will be conducted at a place other than the site of research mentioned in the application; please do not append any letters of recommendation Read the guidelines on the invitation letter.
- Letter of commitment: See the guidelines on the letter of commitment.
- Form accounting for the use of discretionary government grant awarded for sport science research
- You can submit the application when you have filled in or attached all the necessary information.
- A red warning triangle on the tab tells you that information is missing.
- You can supplement the application until the deadline. Resaving will replace the earlier version.
- If you want to supplement the application after the deadline, please get in touch with the contact persons listed in the call text.
The Academy of Finland takes care of the scientific review of the applications in peer-review panels. We mainly use foreign experts as reviewers. The applications are primarily reviewed in international panels. The panel drafts one review report on each application. At least two individual reviews are requested for applications with a subject that does not fit into any of the panels.
- how the project supports the objectives of the programme
- scientific quality, innovativeness and novelty value of the research as well as its impact within the scientific community
- competence of applicant/research team in terms of project implementation
- feasibility of research plan (incl.research ethics)
- quality of research environment and collaborative networks
- researcher mobility and researcher training.
Read the review questions that will be used in the review: review form for sport science research projects and review guidelines. The Academy’s review guidelines and forms are only available in English.
After the peer review, in accordance with section 6 of the Act on the Promotion of Sports and Physical Activity and section 2 of the Decree on the Promotion of Sports and Physical Activity, the National Sport Council will give the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture a statement on the government grants. The Ministry will then decide the grants based on the statement and inform the applicants of the decisions.
In its decisions, the Ministry will take into account the application's scientific review by the Academy of Finland and the statement of the project’s relevance for sports policy by the National Sport Council.
The Ministry will evaluate the project’s scientific review, its relation to the chosen themes based on the Sport Council’s statement, the available appropriation, and the project’s necessity to filling in research gaps.
The Ministry of Education, Science and Culture is not bound by the reviews by the Academy of Finland and the National Sport Council.
You will find detailed descriptions of the valid criteria in the Ministry’s call text.
The aim is to make the funding decisions concerning new sport science research projects by the end of March 2021.
After the funding decisions have been made, the Ministry will inform the applicants of their decision.Applicants will also receive an email notification of the decision.After receiving the email, you can log in to the online services with your user ID to view the expert review on your application.