COVID-19 Emergency Call for Proposals: Project Outlines for Call Concerning the Fight Against Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

For this call for proposals some topics may be added or changed before the deadline. Any updates to this call will be shown here.

The submission deadline for project outlines is 16 March 2020, at 13:00 local time.

This project outline call for proposals is mandatory for all those who wish to submit proposals to the main call "COVID-19 Emergency call for proposals: Collaborative and Knowledge-building Projects for the fight against Coronavirus disease (COVID-19)", which will be made available in week 11.


On 31 December 2019, the local authorities of Wuhan (China), reported a cluster of pneumonia cases which turned out to be caused by a novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV). By March 2020 the virus has already spread in over 80 countries outside China. On 30 January 2020 the WHO declared the recent COVID-19 outbreak as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC).

With this call for proposals we wish to contribute to the global response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Our aim is to support research that will enable us to understand and contain the new COVID-19, as well as to improve efficient patient management and public health (national and international) preparedness and response to the current and analogous outbreaks that may come in the future.

About the call for proposals

The call for proposals is based on the recent research priorities defined by the WHO(pdf). International collaboration with research groups in other countries, including those funded by GLOPID-R member organisations to foster larger-scale studies, is encouraged. The scope of the proposals may include different topics:

  • Epidemiological observational studies including risk factor determination, detailed investigation of transmission events and infectiousness (included susceptibility of infection).
  • Clinical observational studies on severity, natural history, optimal sampling strategies and triage processes.
  • Registry-based follow-up of critically ill patients.
  • National clinical trials that are embedded in international multicentre clinical trials based on the WHO Model protocol when relevant, and using WHO’s updated prioritisation criteria to guide choice of interventions for evaluation, including therapeutics and supportive measures.
  • Public health response and social countermeasures:
    • Understanding the social dynamics of transmission and vulnerability.
    • Risk communication, social dynamics and public health response. This may also include traditional and social media.
    • Developing strategies to combat misinformation, stigma, and fear.
    • Cultural dimensions of the epidemic such as, examining how individuals and communities understand and react to the disease, including special attention to vulnerable groups.
    • Studying international relations, global coordination, response systems and crisis management.
  • Supporting healthcare system response including infection prevention and control, including best practice to protect health care workers.
  • Other research projects related to cooperation across sectors that encompass e.g. education, public transport and economic impacts.

The proposal must address at least one of the objectives mentioned above.

Excluded from the current call: Development of diagnostics, vaccines and therapeutics.

This call for proposals is only in English, and is the legally binding version.

The project outlines of the proposed research project must be submitted by 16 March 2020 through "My RCN".

Feedback to the project outlines will be given by 20 March 2020 at the latest. The feedback will include comments on relevance to the call and may also include advice/s to the applicants (e.g. two or more proposals are advised to cooperate).

Only those submitting a project outline are eligible to finally send a full proposal to the deadline 31 March 2020.

Who is eligible to apply?

Project outlines may only be submitted by approved Norwegian research organisations.

Who can participate in the project?

Approved Norwegian research organisations may submit project outlines in cooperation with the public and/or private sectors, other public entities and/or private organisations. Stakeholders from outside the research sector may be municipalities, companies, special interest organisations and others.

What can you seek funding for?

There is no funding available under this call for project outlines, but the budget for the main project must be indicated in the project outline.

The total budget for the main call for proposals is NOK 30 million. The Research Council can provide NOK 1-5 million in funding per project under this call. Each applicant must provide at least 20 % own financing.

Please see the webpage on “What to enter in the project budget” for details and important information.

The following costs can be covered by the Research Council:

  • Payroll and indirect expenses related to researcher time (including research fellowship positions) at the research organisations participating in the project.
  • Procurement of R&D services. The Project Owner and partners may purchase R&D-related services from public and private suppliers individually or together.
  • Equipment. This encompasses operating and depreciation costs for scientific equipment and research infrastructure necessary for the execution of the project.
  • Other operating expenses, which comprise costs for other activities that are necessary to carry out R&D efforts under the project.

Relevant thematic areas for this call

Global development and international relations

Global health


Welfare, culture and society

Societal security

Practical information

Requirements for this application type

Please note that it is not possible to revise a project outline once it has been submitted. Please do not click on the “Submit” button before the outline is finalised for submission.

The submission deadline for project outlines is 16 March 2020, 13:00 CEST.

  • The designated project outline template must be used. You will find the template at the bottom of this page.
  • Project outlines must be submitted in English.
  • The project outline must not exceed three A4 pages.

Applicants will receive automatic email confirmation of receipt as soon as the project outline has been received by the Research Council. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that the submission has been received.

Assessment criteria

Feedback will not involve a scientific assessment of the research content of the proposed project.

Messages at time of print 11 December 2023, 04:12 CET

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