SRC programme (invited applicants only): Water for Welfare, Security and Peace (WaWe)

3 Jun 2024
29 Aug 2024 at 16.15 Finnish time (2nd stage)
approx. €28m for first 3-year period (distributed between the two programmes open for application)
1 Dec 2024–30 Nov 2027 (1st period) + 1 Dec 2027–30 Nov 2030 (2nd period)

The call for invited applicants (the second call stage) is open only to the consortia selected by the SRC.

The Finnish Government decided the 2024 themes for strategic research in its plenary session on 28 December 2024.

Research under this programme focuses on water and water resources as a societal issue at both national and global level. Water is an essential element in welfare, security of supply and sustainable development, be it surface water, groundwater, inland waters or oceans.

Finland has considerable water expertise, which provides a solid foundation for developing new water-related solutions. From a global perspective, water is a critical resource. Water management causes tensions and even conflicts worldwide. Climate change, biodiversity loss and demographics will all challenge international water diplomacy and policy.

How can we promote sustainable water management amid rising competition for water? How do we shore up water security against threats to both quantity and quality? Research under this programme will seek to build a broad understanding and expertise to support water security and sustainable water use in Finland and internationally.

The Strategic Research Council (SRC) established within the Research Council of Finland provides funding for long-term, solution-oriented research of a high scientific standard that is aimed at finding solutions to major societal problems and challenges. SRC funding has the following characteristics:

  • The funding is only granted to consortia. The consortia must follow the consortium structure required by the SRC.
  • Solving societal challenges requires not only relevant research but also interaction aimed at societal impact between researchers and knowledge users throughout the project’s lifecycle. The activities of the projects and their effects will also be monitored regularly.
  • The funded consortia form a thematic programme led by a part-time programme director separately funded by the SRC. The main task of the programme director is to promote the societal impact of the programme.
  • The funded projects shall commit to following the principles of responsible science.
  • Funding can be used to cover the salary of the consortium PI for the duration of the funding period. The SRC requires that consortium PIs commit themselves with a sufficient level of input to heading the consortium.
  • The consortia should work towards a balanced gender composition.
  • The funding follows the full cost model, and the SRC’s funding contribution comes to 100%.

Funded consortia and t programme director shall actively participate in programme activities and cross-programme activities for social impact. The programme directors are responsible for programme-level development of interaction and cross-programme cooperation, and for the promotion of the societal impact of strategic research.

The funding for programme directors is granted through a separate call for applications, which is open concurrently with the programme call.

A programme director may not act as consortium PI, subproject PI or work package leader in the programme they manage. The programme director must be a researcher at the professor or docent level.

The present SRC call has two stages. The first stage is open to all eligible applicants. SRC consortia shortlisted in the first call stage will be invited to submit full applications. The SRC decides which consortia are invited.

SRC consortium PIs must have a doctoral degree and hold the title of docent or have research experience at the docent level. To be eligible, a consortium must include at least three organisations and at least three research fields. An SRC consortium must also have an interaction coordinator qualified in their own field.

The project duration is 3 + 3 years. The SRC is prepared to fund a total of 9–10 projects under the two programme calls open for application (Water for Welfare, Security and Peace and Democracy for the Future). Each project will have a funding budget of 2.75–3 million euros for the first three-year funding period. The total funding budget for the first three years has been set at a total of some 28 million euros. The cost estimates of the projects must be realistic.

Before you fill in your application in the online services (SARA), carefully read the call text, especially the funding terms and conditions and the SRC’s funding principles. Also read the section on responsible science available on the Research Council of Finland’s website.

If the call text and the funding terms and conditions conflict, the terms and conditions should always be considered primary. 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.

Any changes in the call guidelines between the first and the second call stage will be notified on this page.

Read the full call text on this page.

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