Arctic Field Grant (AFG) - Funding for Fieldwork in Svalbard

Purpose

Svalbard Science Forum (SSF) is announcing funding to help facilitate fieldwork in Svalbard and Jan Mayen for Master students, PhD students and researchers affiliated with approved Norwegian research organisations. The main aim is to support Master students, PhD students and researchers not currently established in Svalbard. 

Viktige datoer

09 Oct 2019

Date call is made active

20 Nov 2019

Application submission deadline

18 Dec 2019

Grant allocation meeting

01 Mar 2020

Earliest permitted project start

01 Nov 2020

Deadline for submitting report

28 Feb 2021

Latest permitted project completion

Viktige datoer

About the call for proposals

Svalbard Science Forum (SSF) is announcing funding to help facilitate fieldwork in Svalbard and Jan Mayen for Master students, PhD students and researchers affiliated with Norwegian research organisations. The main aim is to support Master students, PhD students and researchers not currently established in Svalbard. For Master and PhD students, the collected field data must be necessary for, and part of, their thesis. The funding covers additional costs related to fieldwork location in Svalbard.

International and scientific collaboration and coordination are keystones in the objectives of the SSF. Students or researchers from non-Norwegian institutions are eligible for AFG if, and only if, the project is carried out in close cooperation with a Norwegian research organisation. The application must give a detailed description of the collaboration and the short and long-term benefits it will have for both parties. Applications related to Ny-Ålesund/the Kongsfjorden area must describe how they will contribute and relate to the four SSF flagships (atmosphere, glaciology, Kongsfjorden and terrestrial systems). The application must also include a dissemination plan for the project including publications, outreach and data handling and sharing.

Applications are open to both Norwegian and foreign students and scientists, but funding will be administered by the Norwegian organisation. The Norwegian organisation will have the economic and scientific responsibility for the project.

Funding may be sought for the period 1 March 2020 to 28 February 2021. Master students conducting fieldwork that is vital to their thesis in January and February 2020 can apply for funding under this call.

All projects that receive funding must submit a scientific report (3 pages long) by 1 November 2020. For projects with fieldwork after 1 October 2020 the deadline can be adjusted through prior agreement.

Who is eligible to apply?

Approved Norwegian research organisations may apply for funding under this call for proposals.

Funding may be sought for one named student/scientist only and, when necessary for safety reasons, one field assistant for the aforementioned scientific personnel. Funding cannot be transferred from one person to another or from one year to another. The application must be written by the person for whom funding is being sought and the research organisation must be the Project Owner.

Both the student/researcher and the project must be registered in the Research in Svalbard database (RiS) before you can begin the application process. You will find all relevant information in this call and on the SSF homepage (Terms & conditions, How-to, FAQ, confirmation form and templates).

Who can participate in the project?

Requirements for the Project Owner

The Project Owner must be an approved Norwegian research organisation. The project must have a project administrator from the Norwegian organisation. Funding will be administered by the Norwegian research organisation and the associated project responsible.

Requirements for the project manager

The project manager must be a Master student, PhD student or researcher affiliated with a Norwegian research organisation. Students/researchers from non-Norwegian institutions are eligible for AFG if, and only if, their project is carried out in close cooperation with a Norwegian research organisation.

What can you seek funding for?

You can apply for a maximum of NOK 80 000 to cover costs related to fieldwork in Svalbard or NOK 100 000 for fieldwork on Jan Mayen. For more information, please see the SSF homepage (Terms & conditions, How-to, FAQ, confirmation form and templates).

Funding can only cover supplementary costs for fieldwork on Svalbard and is not intended to fully finance a project. Students/researchers based in the research bases on Svalbard are eligible to apply for funding, also for fieldwork taking place in other parts of the archipelago. The funding only covers direct expenses in connection with field-based data collection for a project and no more than 5% overhead for the institution. Overhead must be listed in the budget specifications.

A fieldwork costs calculator for Svalbard is available on the SSF homepage to help the research organisation/student/researcher set up the budget.

The following items must be specified in the application form:

  • Travel
  • Cost of living
  • Local transport
  • Purchases
  • Renting cost for equipment
  • Field assistant
  • Institution overhead (5% of total)

Archiving of research data

All projects must be registered and updated in the Research in Svalbard (RiS) database. A description of the data (metadata) must be uploaded to the database as part of the report.

Reporting and disbursement of funds

All projects that receive funding must submit a scientific report (3 pages long) and itemised invoice by 1 November 2020. For applications to cover costs for fieldwork carried out after 1 October 2020 the deadline can be adjusted with prior agreement. Funds will be disbursed to the Project Owner based on the itemised invoice after the description of data (metadata) has been uploaded to the RiS database and the report has been approved.

Relevant thematic areas for this call

Polar

Requirements for this application type

General requirements:

  • The Project Owner and project manager must be in accordance with the requirements set out in this call.
  • The grant application must lie within the scope of this call.
  • The grant application, including all attachments, must be submitted in English.
  • All attachments must be uploaded in PDF format.
  • All attachments must be completed in full, using the correct templates.
  • The budget must be filled in correctly so that it is clear what the amount sought will cover. The amount sought and any own financing must be in accordance with the requirements set out in this call.

Mandatory attachments:

  • Project description, maximum 3 pages, using the designated template (which can be found below).
  • A CV for the project manager, maximum 4 pages, using the designated template (which can be found below).
  • Confirmation form from the Norwegian research organisation, using the designated template (which can be found below). The confirmation form should be uploaded in the field "Other items" in the online grant application form.

All templates for the mandatory attachments can be found at the end of this call for proposals.

Grant applications that do not satisfy the above requirements will be rejected.

All documents, budget calculator, HowTo and Terms & conditions can be found on the SSF webpage.

Assessment criteria

The Research Council has introduced new assessment criteria: Excellence, Impact and Implementation.

Excellence

Originality/Novelty
• The extent to which the concept is sound, credible and novel.

Solidity
• The extent to which the project objectives are clear and relevant.
• The quality of the proposed deliverables from the project.

Impact

Potential
• The extent to which the expected effects are specified.
• The extent to which expected impacts on the system and societal levels are specified.

Knowledge sharing and exploitation
• The quality of the proposed communication and dissemination activities.
• The extent to which it is credible that the proposed outputs will contribute to the specified effects and impact.

Implementation

Project Manager and project group
• The extent to which the Project Manager and project group are qualified and have the necessary expertise and are positioned to implement the project.
• The extent to which management structures and procedures are appropriate.

Plans and management
• The extent to which the work plan is clear and understandable, and the time table realistic
• The extent to which objectives and measures are coherent.
• The extent to which the project has the support of the leadership of the Project Owner and any partners, and the allocation of roles in the project is clear.
• The extent to which the budget is realistic and appropriate, and resources are allocated so that each of the partners can fulfil their role.
• The extent to which potential risks have been discussed.

The grant application will also be given a preliminary assessment according to the following criteria:

  • The Project Owner and project manager must be within the categories set out in this call.
  • The grant application must lie within the scope of this call.
  • The amount sought and any own financing must be in accordance with the requirements set out in this call.
  • The budget must be filled in correctly so that it is clear what the amount sought will cover.
  • The grant application must be completed in full.
  • All attachments must be submitted, using the correct templates.
  • The project description must respond to the call.
  • The grant application, including all attachments, must be submitted in English.
  • All attachments must be uploaded in PDF format.

Administrative procedures

Applications will be processed administratively by a panel composed of in-house staff plus external experts with extensive experience from Svalbard. The final decision regarding funding is taken by the Research Council of Norway. No individual feedback or grades will be given to the applicants.

You can expect notification of the results of the application process in February 2020.