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

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Purpose

Svalbard Science Forum allocates funding to Norwegian research organisations to facilitate fieldwork in Svalbard and Jan Mayen. The funding is available for Master students, PhD students and researchers affiliated with these organisations. The main priority is to support Master students, PhD students and researchers not currently established in Svalbard.

Important dates

07 Oct 2020

Date call is made active

18 Nov 2020

Application submission deadline

01 Mar 2021

Earliest permitted project start

01 Nov 2021

Reporting deadline

28 Feb 2022

Latest permitted project completion

Important dates

About the call for proposals

Svalbard Science Forum (SSF) announces funding for fieldwork in Svalbard and Jan Mayen for Master students, PhD students and researchers affiliated with Norwegian research organisations. The main aim is to support applicants 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 in Svalbard. This year it is also possible to apply for up to NOK 10.000 for costs in connection with attending the Svalbard Science Conference 2021.

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. The 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 2021 to 28 February 2022. Master students conducting fieldwork that is vital to their thesis in January and February 2021 can apply for funding in this call.

All projects that receive funding must submit a scientific report (3 pages) by 1 November 2021. For projects with fieldwork after 1 October 2021 the deadline can be adjusted through prior agreement.

Who is eligible to apply?

Approved Norwegian research organisations may apply for funding. 

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 to another person or year. The application must be written by the intended recipient and submitted by her/ his research organisation.

Both the student/scientist and the project must be registered in the Research in Svalbard Portal (RiS) before you can begin the application process. You will find all relevant information in the call and on the SSF homepage (Terms & conditions, How-to, FAQ, confirmation form and templates): https://www.forskningsradet.no/en/svalbard-science-forum/ssf-tools-and-funding-schemes/arctic-field-grant-afg/

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 this organisation. The grant will be administered by the Norwegian institution 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 100 000 to cover costs related to fieldwork in Svalbard or on Jan Mayen. For more information, please see the SSF homepage (Terms & conditions, How-to, FAQ, confirmation form and templates): https://www.forskningsradet.no/en/svalbard-science-forum/ssf-tools-and-funding-schemes/arctic-field-grant-afg/.

It is this year also possible to apply for up to NOK 10.000 for costs (travel, hotel, attendance fee and printing of poster) for the applicant to present his/her results (mandatory poster or oral presentation) at the Svalbard Science Conference 2021. The NOK 10.000 are included in the NOK 100.000 maximum.

Funding can only be sought to 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 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.

The following items must be specified in the application form:

  • Travel
  • Cost of living
  • Local transport
  • Purchases
  • Renting cost for equipment
  • Field assistant
  • Cost for attending the SSC2021
  • Institution overhead (5% of total)

Archiving of research data

Your project must be registered and updated in the Research in Svalbard (RiS) Portal.  A description of the data (metadata) must be uploaded to the portal as part of the report. http://www.researchinsvalbard.no/

Reporting and disbursement of funding

All projects that receive funding must submit a scientific report (3 pages) and an itemised invoice by 1 November 2021. For projects with fieldwork carried out after 1 October 2021 the deadline can be adjusted with prior agreement. Funds will be disbursed to the Project Owner based on an itemised invoice after the description of data metadata has been uploaded to the RiS Portal and the report has been approved.

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Relevant thematic areas for this call

Polar

Requirements for this application type

  • Application amount, what is included in the budget and any self-financing must comply with the call.
  • The budget must be set up properly so that it is clear what funds are being sought.
  • The application form must be completed in full.
  • The requested attachments must be attached and in the correct template.
  • The description of the project must respond to the call.

Applicant must fill in all sections in Template for project description. The questions should be answered as concisely and specifically as possible.

The application must be written in English and must include the following attachments (otherwise the application will be rejected):

  • Complete project description (it is mandatory to use the RCN template)
  • Itemised budget (Advisory budget calculator on the SSF webpage)
  • Confirmation form and cooperation description from the Norwegian institution (mandatory template)
  • CV for the intended recipient (Mandatory RCN template)
  • All attachments must be submitted in PDF format

All the templates for attachments are available for download at the end of the call for proposals.

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

All documents, HowTo and terms & conditions can be found on the SSF webpage:

https://www.forskningsradet.no/en/svalbard-science-forum/ssf-tools-and-funding-schemes/arctic-field-grant-afg/

Assessment criteria

Grant applications will be assessed in relation to the following criteria:

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.

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 made by the Research Council of Norway. No individual feedback or grades are available to applicants.

The anticipated date for notification of results of application process is February 2021.