The Strategic Research Council (SRC) established within the Academy of Finland is launching two new strategic research programmes. The programmes are built around the themes adopted by the Finnish Government in September. The programmes will start in autumn 2022.
The new programmes are:
- Children and Young People – Healthy, Thriving and Capable Makers of the Future (YOUNG)
- Security and Trust in the Age of Algorithms (SHIELD).
The cross-cutting priority in both themes is equity.
The programmes will run for six years. In the two programmes, the SRC is prepared to fund 8–10 projects with a total of some 28 million euros during the first three-year period. The progress of the projects will be reviewed at midterm, after which the SRC will decide on the continuation of funding.
The call has two stages. The first stage opens on 3 November 2021 and closes on 12 January 2022. The first stage is open to all eligible applicants. Projects going through to the second call stage will be selected in March 2022. The SRC will take decisions on the projects to be invited to the second stage based on the first-stage international peer review.
The funding is granted to consortia. Guidelines and terms on consortium structure, composition and activity as well as more detailed application instructions are available in the call texts.
The themes of the programmes affect citizens extensively
The aim of SRC-funded research is to find solutions to major societal challenges. According to Anu Kaukovirta, who starts as Chair of the SRC on 1 January 2022 and is currently Vice Chair, the programme calls concern themes that have recently been of great concern to citizens – security and trust and the wellbeing of children and young people.
Kaukovirta said: “Both themes are closely linked to the idea of the experience of equity as a critical resource. On the other hand, the opposite of equity is the idea of long-term damages caused by inequality and discrimination in our society.”
“The future lies on the shoulders of all children and young people, but they have very different starting points. A lot of research is underway into children and young people, but there is no comprehensive understanding of measures to support them. In the programme, we emphasise the need for children and young people to get their own voice heard. They are active actors in society.”
The second programme, Security and Trust in the Age of Algorithms, focuses on novel challenges of our time. According to Kaukovirta, a lack of trust undermines democracy. She notes that we need an improved understanding of the factors that threaten trust and security and of how to combat them at many levels.
“Security and trust go hand in hand. The crisis created by the pandemic, the new use of information and rapid changes in our information environment have challenged our trust in each other, in decision-makers and in society’s ability to act and protect us. Even more traditional security risks have not disappeared.”
The call texts are available in English, Finnish and Swedish.
A call info webinar will be held on Thursday 25 November 2021 at 11.00–12.30. The webinar will be held in Finnish, but questions can also be asked in English.
Inquiries and more information
- Call text for SRC programme Children and Young People – Healthy, Thriving and Capable Makers of the Future (YOUNG)
- Call text for SRC programme Security and Trust in the Age of Algorithms (SHIELD)
Children and Young People – Healthy, Thriving and Capable Makers of the Future (YOUNG)
- Kyösti Husso, Science Adviser, tel. +358 295 335 103
- Katri Huutoniemi, Science Adviser, tel. +358 295 335 195
Security and Trust in the Age of Algorithms (SHIELD)
- Tuomas Katajarinne, Science Adviser, tel. +358 295 335 067
- Pilvi Toppinen, Senior Science Adviser, tel. +358 295 335 064
Our email addresses are in the format firstname.lastname(at)aka.fi.
Academy of Finland Communications
Tiina Salo, Communications Coordinator
tel. +358 295 335 084