Knowledge-building Project for Industry

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Purpose

Knowledge-building Projects for Industry are to contribute to industry-oriented researcher training and long-term competence development in thematic areas of importance to the development of trade and industry.

Important dates

26 Jun 2019

Date call is made active

04 Sep 2019

Application submission deadline

13 Dec 2019

Announcement of funding awards

01 Jan 2020

Earliest permitted project start

01 Jun 2020

Latest permitted project start

31 May 2025

Latest permitted project completion

Important dates

About the call for proposals

The 2019 call for Knowledge-Building Projects for Industry is a coordinated call involving a number of programmes. The Research Council is able to move grant proposals across the various programmes without having to obtain the consent of the applicant.

Applicants may seek a minimum NOK 4 million in funding for a Knowledge-building Project for Industry.

The Norwegian-language call for proposals is the legally binding version.

Who is eligible to apply?

The call is open to approved research organisations in binding cooperation with relevant actors from Norwegian trade and industry.

Who can participate in the project?

Requirements relating to the Project Owner

  • The Project Owner must be an approved Norwegian research organisation. The organisation listed as the Project Owner in the grant application must have approved the submission of the grant application to the Research Council.

Requirements relating to the project manager

  • The project manager’s scientific expertise and capability to manage the project will be assessed by peer reviewers. There are no formal requirements for the project manager’s qualifications.

Requirements relating to collaboration partners

  • Projects are to be carried out by one or more research organisations in binding cooperation with relevant actors from Norwegian trade and industry and, when relevant, partners from other sectors.
  • Research organisations other than the Project Owner may participate as partners in a project, carry out project activities and receive support on the same level as the Project Owner.
  • All project partners are required to take active part in the planning and follow-up of the project.
  • Project partners from Norwegian trade and industry are to provide cash financing for part of project expenses incurred by the Project Owner and collaborating research organisations. The amount of funding from the Research Council is calculated based on this cash financing amount. The support provided by the Research Council cannot exceed a maximum of four times the total cash contribution from the Norwegian companies.
  • If a grant application incorporates a small number of partners, the project proposal must clearly describe how the knowledge developed under the project will be of benefit to larger user groups.
  • Companies from outside Norway may contribute cash financing to a project, but this funding will not be calculated as part of the required cash financing. Thus this funding will be in addition to the financing provided by Norwegian partners from trade and industry.

The grant application must describe how the project incorporates the strategic objectives and priorities of the Project Owner and any research organisations/users participating as partners.

What can you seek funding for?

Under this call, the Research Council may cover up to 80 per cent of the costs incurred by research organisations that are necessary for the execution of the project. The remaining 20 per cent of the participating research organisation’s costs is to be covered by partners from trade and industry in the project.

In order for the Research Council to calculate its amount of support, the grant application must include an overall project budget based on the following types of approved project costs:

Only costs incurred by research organisations are to be entered in the project budget.

Conditions for funding

It is a requirement that funding for the projects does not constitute state aid. Support from the Research Council is to go to the non-economic activity of research organisations. Partners from trade and industry have a role as financers. Any project-related activities carried out by collaborating companies are not to be included in the project budget.

The amount of funding awarded by the Research Council may not exceed a maximum of four times the total cash contribution from Norwegian companies.

If the project is awarded funding, the Project Owner must enter into collaboration agreements with all project partners. Partners that are not research organisations may not be granted ownership rights to results generated under the project.

The Research Council's allocation for the first year and any pledges for subsequent years will be disbursed in accordance with the conditions set out in this agreement and the General Terms and Conditions for R&D Projects. Projects seeking funding under this call must satisfy the following requirements in particular:

  • Annual project account reports must be submitted to document incurred project costs and their financing.

Professional development plan for post-doctoral research fellows

If the project includes funding for post-doctoral fellowships, a professional development plan must be drawn up for the post-doctoral fellowship period and submitted to the Research Council by at the latest three months after the post-doctoral research fellow is formally employed. The professional development plan must be signed by the employee and the immediate superior, and it must be updated in connection with any significant changes during the fellowship period. For more information, please see the document “Mandatory professional development plan for post-doctoral research fellows (docx)” and the information on Personal Post-doctoral Fellowships on the Research Council website.

Archiving of research data

The Project Owner (R&D organisation) is responsible for selecting the archiving solution(s) to use for storing research data generated during the project. The Project Owner must specify the planned solution(s) in connection with the revised grant proposal.

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Relevant thematic areas for this call

The topics encompassed under this call are grouped into the following thematic areas: Environment-friendly energy and CO2 capture and storage, Oceans, Petroleum.

Special requirements and guidelines may be indicated in some of the thematic areas.

Environment-friendly energy and CO2 capture and storage

Oceans

This thematic area is targeted towards the maritime sector.

Petroleum

Requirements for this application type

Requirements that apply to all the programmes

The grant application form must be created and submitted via “My RCN Web”. You may revise and resubmit your grant application form multiple times up to the application submission deadline. We recommend that you submit your application as soon as you have filled in the application form and included all mandatory attachments. After the deadline, it is the most recently submitted version of the grant application that will be processed.

General requirements:

  • The grant application, including all attachments, must be submitted in English.
  • All attachments must be in PDF format and uploaded as an attachment to the grant application form.
  • The project description must be written using the designated template at the bottom of this page. All items must be completed.
  • If the applicant has submitted the same or similar grant proposals under another Research Council programme or scheme, this must be stated in the grant application.
  • The latest permitted project start date for projects is 1 June 2020. Projects approved for funding that have not started by this date may lose their allocation.

Requirements relating to finances and budget:

  • All project costs are to be budgeted in accordance with Research Council guidelines.
  • The amount of funding awarded by the Research Council may not exceed a maximum of four times the total cash contribution from Norwegian companies.
  • The Project Owner and other partners must not be suppliers of R&D services or sub-contractors in the same project.
  • Projects may not comprise state aid, directly or indirectly, to companies defined as an “undertaking”.

Requirements relating to research fellows:

Mandatory attachments

  • A project description of maximum 10 pages using the designated template for this application type, found at the bottom of this page.
  • CVs for the project manager and key project participants using the designated templates found at the bottom of this page. The CV for the project manager is to be uploaded as attachment type “CV” in the grant application form, and other CVs are to be uploaded as attachment type “Other”.
  • Letters of Intent describing the financial contributions of each partner must be attached to the grant application. The letters must also include an explanation of why the research project is important for the partners. The letters are to be uploaded as attachment type “Other”.
  • For projects encompassing doctoral degrees, you must attach a Letter of Intent from the degree-conferring university/institution to the grant application.

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

Optional attachments

  • Proposals for up to three international referees who are presumed to be impartial and qualified to review the grant proposal. This is to be uploaded under the attachment type Referees.

Links to websites and documents, as well as other attachments than those specified above, will not be included in the application review process.

Assessment criteria

In 2019 the Research Council is introducing three new assessment criteria: Excellence, Impact and Implementation. These criteria have been designed to be applicable for assessing basic and applied research activities alike.

Excellence

The extent to which the proposed work is ambitious, novel, and goes beyond the state-of-the-art
• Scientific creativity and originality.
• Novelty and boldness of hypotheses or research questions.
• Potential for development of new knowledge beyond the current state-of-the-art, including significant theoretical, methodological, experimental or empirical advancement.

The quality of the proposed R&D activities
• Quality of the research questions, hypotheses and project objectives, and the extent to which they are clearly and adequately specified.
• Credibility and appropriateness of the theoretical approach, research design and use of scientific methods. Appropriate consideration of interdisciplinary approaches.
• Where relevant, the extent to which appropriate consideration has been given to ethical issues, safety issues, gender dimension in research content, and appropriate use of stakeholder/user knowledge.

Impact

Potential impact of the proposed research
The extent to which:
• the potential impacts are clearly formulated and plausible.
• the outputs of the project address important present and future scientific challenges.
• the outputs of the project address important present and future challenges for the sector(s).
• the developed competence and expected results will promote future value creation, in the industry and/or development of the public sector?
• the outputs will address relevant UN Sustainable Development Goals.
• the project will be undertaken in a responsible manner, with reference to relevant methodology for achieving this.

Communication and exploitation
• Quality and scope of communication and engagement activities with different target audiences, including relevant stakeholders/users.
• Involvement of the stakeholders/users in dissemination and utilisation of the project results.

Implementation

The quality of the project manager and project group
• The extent to which the project manager has relevant expertise and experience, and demonstrated ability to perform high-quality research (as appropriate to the career stage).
• The degree of complementarity of the participants and the extent to which the project group as a whole encompasses the expertise needed to undertake the research effectively, and provides added value.

The quality of the project organisation and management
• Effectiveness of the work plan, including the extent to which resources assigned to work packages are aligned with project objectives and deliverables.
• Appropriateness of the allocation of tasks, ensuring that all participants have a valid role and adequate resources in the project to fulfil that role.
• Appropriateness of the proposed management structures and governance.
• Appropriateness of stakeholder and user participation in the implementation and governance of the project.

Overall assessment of the referee/panel

The mark is derived from the panel's assessments of the three criteria Excellence, Impact and Implementation.

Relevance to the call for proposals

The extent to which the project satisfies the guidelines and stipulations set out in the call for proposals.

Administrative procedures

Once the grant applications have been received and the application submission deadline has passed, the Research Council will review them to ensure that they satisfy all the formal requirements relating to the call and attachments. Grant applications that do not comply with the requirements will be rejected.

Grant applications that satisfy the formal requirements will be distributed to referee panels comprised of international experts in the relevant thematic areas and disciplines. After the panel review, the most highly ranked applications will be assessed on their relevance to the thematic areas of the call.

The Research Council’s final decision on funding awards will be taken by the portfolio board based on an overall assessment of the project portfolio. The project portfolio assessment will take the following factors into account:

  • The grant applications’ overall and individual marks;
  • The thematic distribution of grant applications to each programme participating in the call;
  • The relative volume and quality of grant applications under each of the programmes’ other calls in 2019;
  • The overall set of objectives for each programme;
  • Guidelines in the allocation letters from the ministries, or changes in the financial or scientific framework of the programmes.
  • The final funding decision will be announced in mid-December.

See here for more information for applicants (pdf).