Important dates related to the calls and the evaluation process

June 2023

Calls for proposals with ongoing application reception published

Researcher Project for Experienced Researchers (FRIPRO), Researcher Project for Early Careers (FRIPRO)  and Three-year Researcher Project with International Mobility (FRIPRO).

October 2023

Ongoing application reception opens

October/November 2023

Announcement

You will receive a reply to your application for a Researcher Project for Young Talents (FRIPRO) with an application deadline of 15 March 2023, and the results will be published on our website.

Spring 2024

Announcement

Allocations for calls with ongoing application reception will take place approximately every two months throughout the year, with the first planned round of allocations in spring 2024. You will receive an answer to your application in My RCN web and the result will be published on our website.

Important dates related to the calls and the evaluation process

About FRIPRO

New knowledge often arises in unexpected ways and in areas that are impossible to predict. Free, basic research is therefore important for scientific and academic renewal, and can form the basis for more applied research, business development and policy development.

The FRIPRO scheme will contribute to this, and funding is available for basic and applied research projects in all subject areas, where the project ideas come from the researchers themselves.

  • The FRIPRO scheme shall promote
  • scientific quality at the forefront of international research
  • bold and innovative research
  • career and international mobility for researchers early in their research careers

It is allowed to dream big and aim for research that has the potential to provide significant advances in the field of study. Through the FRIPRO scheme, we are willing to invest in bold research with potentially high risk, but at the same time expect good plans for risk management in the grant applications.

The innovative nature and scientific quality of the projects

(The assessment criteria Research quality – potential for moving the research front and Research quality – quality in R&D activities) weighs heaviest when applications are selected for funding from FRIPRO, and the acceptance rate is low. Only applications awarded a mark of 6 or 7 for all assessment criteria are eligible for FRIPRO funding.

In 2022, about 25 per cent of these were granted. We estimate a mark threshold of at least 6.5 (average of the four assessment criteria) for applications awarded funding in the years ahead.

The calls for proposals in 2023

The FRIPRO scheme is subject to major changes in 2023. We are currently processing applications for Researcher Projects for Young Talents that were submitted by the deadline of 15 March 2023. At the same time, we will introduce continuous application reception and several changes in requirements for project managers from the autumn.  Through FRIPRO, we want to reach researchers in different stages of their research careers. We have three calls for proposals, with the following requirements that apply from autumn 2023:

Researchers at the start of their research careers may apply for a Three-year Researcher Project with international mobility. The project manager must have submitted his/her doctoral thesis before the application is submitted, and it must be less than seven years since the public defence. The projects have a duration of three years, where you as project manager first spend two years abroad and then the third year in Norway.

The second step in the career ladder is the Early Career Research Project. This call replaces a Researcher Project for Young Talents in FRIPRO. There is no age limit, and all researchers with 2-7 years of experience after completing their doctoral degree may apply. The projects have a duration of 3-4 years, and you can apply for funding for yourself, other researchers and operating funding. 

The top step in the career ladder is a Researcher Project for Experienced Researchers, replacing the Researcher Project for Scientific Renewal in FRIPRO. We introduce a requirement of six years of experience after a doctoral degree or associate professor qualifications in order to apply. The call is therefore reserved for experienced researchers who are particularly skilled in their fields of research. At the same time, we are increasing the maximum project duration from six to eight years.

If you meet the requirements for more than one of FRIPRO's calls for proposals and are unsure which one you should choose, our general recommendation is to choose the call for proposals that is lowest on the career ladder. Here you will normally have a better chance of succeeding in the competition for funds.

All project managers for FRIPRO projects may apply for funding for research stays of 3–12 months abroad for the Research Council-funded doctoral and post-doctoral fellowships in their projects, under the call Overseas Research Grants for Doctoral and Post-doctoral Research Fellows.

Project managers for Researcher Projects for Early Careers and older projects such as Researcher Project for Young Talents and Young Research Talents may also apply for funding for research stays abroad for themselves.

Only research organisations may apply for FRIPRO schemes, possibly in cooperation with other research organisations. Companies and other undertakings may not be partners, but may provide R&D services to the projects as subcontractors.

Other amended requirements and restrictions from fall 2023

To reduce the use of resources in connection with the preparation and processing of applications to the Research Council, we have introduced a number of measures to increase the proportion of applications awarded funding in FRIPRO. 

Continuous reception and processing of applications - one year waiting period before new submission

All three FRIPRO calls for proposals have continuous application reception and processing. You can apply at any time, and the project for which you are applying for funding must have planned project start-up 8–18 months after you submit the application. As a project manager, you will be given a 12-month grace period calculated from the date you submit your application until you can apply again. You can be a project participant in other FRIPRO applications and project manager for applications for other calls under the Research Council regardless of your time in the FRIPRO scheme.

The portfolio board will make allocation decisions approximately every two months, with the first announcement of results in spring 2024. They will distribute the FRIPRO annual budget equally in each decision round during the year, and in each decision round they will allocate available funding to applications submitted to all three of our calls for proposals with continuous application reception.

Eligible applications that are not granted in a decision round may end up on a waiting list. Applications on the waiting list will participate in the competition for funding in the same way as newly received applications in the next round of decisions. There will be a limit to how long an application can remain on a waiting list before it is rejected.

The waiting list function will help to even out any quality differences for applications awarded funding in different parts of the year. This will ensure that the quality of the applications awarded funding is as equal as possible regardless of when they have been submitted. This means that it will not matter when you submit your application as to whether it is granted or not.

Submission restriction period (quarantine)

Project managers for applications awarded marks below the specified thresholds must wait another one or two years before they can apply again. The length of the submission restriction period is differentiated between the rungs of the career ladder, that is, between the three calls for proposals.

We introduced waiting period and submission restriction period from the announcement of a Researcher Project for Young Talents with a deadline of 15 March 2023. The boundaries are based on an average of the grades (1–7, where 7 is the highest grade) given by the panels.

Submission restriction period length grade limits:

Announcement Two-year quarantine
One-year quarantine
No quarantine
Researcher Project for Experienced Researchers 1-3 3,25-5,5 5,75-7
Researcher Project for Early Careers/Young Talents No 1-4,5 4,75-7
Three-year Researcher Project with International Mobility No No All

How does waiting period and submission restriction period work?

The waiting period applies from the date you submit the application, while the submission restriction period applies from the date the waiting period expires.

Example: A project manager submits an application for a Researcher Project for Experienced Researchers on 1 February 2024. During the panel review, the application will receive a mark average of 5.5, and the project manager will be notified of the application in autumn 2024. The waiting period for the project manager means that he or she can be the project manager for a new FRIPRO application no earlier than 1 February 2025, but because the application received a grade average below the quarantine period limit for one year of submission restriction period, he or she cannot submit an application to FRIPRO again until 1 February 2026 at the earliest.

Other measures

In addition, from autumn 2023, we will introduce several smaller measures to increase the funding percentage and reduce the application volume and use of resources in FRIPRO:

  • You cannot be the project manager for more than one FRIPRO project at a time, but you can apply for a new project well in advance of the completion of your ongoing project. The new project for which you are applying for funding can start no earlier than the day after the end date of the first approved contract for the ongoing FRIPRO project you are leading, and you can submit the application 8-18 months before the planned project start-up.

If you are unsure which date applies to you, contact the case officer for your project. You will find contact information for the case officer in the contract for the project, which can be found on "My RCN Web".  The restriction applies regardless of the type of FRIPRO project you are managing (Researcher Project for Scientific Renewal, Researcher Project for Experienced Researchers, Researcher Project, Researcher Project for Young Talents, Researcher Project for Early Careers, Three-year Researcher Project with International Mobility, FRIPRO Mobility Grant, FRIPRO Toppforsk or Large Interdisciplinary Researcher Project), and regardless of which part of the FRIPRO funding for your project is part of (FRIHUMSAM,  FRIMEDBIO or FRINATEK).

  • The Research Council makes use of permanent peer lists in the processing of grant applications in order to put together referee panels with appropriate expertise more quickly and efficiently to assess the applications received. This means that we collect peers both before and after we open for applications in the autumn. Peer reviewers will commit for several years at a time.

Detailed information about the requirements that apply to your application can be found in our calls for proposals. See links in the timeline further up the page.

The amendments have been formulated in close dialogue with the research organisations, the Research Council's board, the three portfolio boards and the Ministry of Education and Research.

The portfolio boards make decisions

For the call Researcher Project for Young Talents (FRIPRO only), with an application deadline of 15 March 2023, the portfolio boards for the humanities and social sciences, life sciences and science and technology will decide whether to grant or reject funding.

For calls for proposals with continuous application reception, the new Portfolio Board for Ground-breaking Research (which will take over responsibility for the FRIPRO scheme from 1 January 2024) will make the decision on funding or rejection.

Humanities and social sciences

Wiebke Ramm

    Banebrytende forskning

Life science

Kjell Emil Naas

    Banebrytende forskning

Natural sciences and technologies

Markus Engelhardt

    Banebrytende forskning

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