Support for establishment and operation of national and international networks

This is a joint call for proposals for multiple programmes. Thus, the thematic areas under which funding may be sought will vary through the course of the year. As this call has no fixed submission deadline, grant applications will be processed on an ongoing basis. Once all the available funding for a thematic area has been allocated, it will not be possible to seek funding under that area.

Purpose

The purpose of support for networks is to strengthen collaboration on research and/or innovation between research organisations nationally and internationally, and between research organisations and other relevant stakeholders (companies, public entities or other organisations). Funding is to cover the applicant’s costs relating to the establishment and operation of national networks or international networks involving Norwegian coordination. Funding may also cover the costs of participation by Norwegian organisations in international networks, and participation in and organisation of Norwegian stakeholders’ activities targeted towards strategically important platforms.

About the call for proposals

Under this call, funding is available for the establishment and operation of networks between research organisations, or between research organisations and other relevant stakeholders, for the following activities:
  • establishment and operation of national networks;
  • establishment and operation of international networks involving Norwegian coordination;
  • Norwegian participation in international networks;
  • organisation of Norwegian stakeholders’ activities targeted towards strategically important platforms.
In this context, “networks” are understood to be formalised, long-term cooperative structures, platforms or meeting places.
 
This is a joint call for proposals involving multiple Research Council programmes. More specific guidelines may be provided regarding the individual thematic areas/programmes for grant applications to that thematic area. Grant applications must comply with the specific guidelines relating to the relevant thematic area/programme. For more information, see “Relevant thematic areas for this call” below.
 
This call has an open-ended submission deadline, i.e. grant applications may be submitted at any time during the year, and will be processed on an ongoing basis. Grant applications to calls for proposals with open-ended deadlines may only be submitted once, and may not be revised and re-submitted, so please make sure the application is fully completed before clicking “Submit”.
 
The earliest permitted project start is six weeks after submission of the grant application, and the latest permitted project start is three months after signing the contract for the project.
 
Funding may be distributed over maximum 36 months.
 
The Norwegian-language call for proposals is the legally binding version.

Who is eligible to apply?

The call is open to approved Norwegian research organisations, companies, public sector entities, non-governmental organisations and associations.

Who can participate in the project?

Requirements relating to the Project Owner
The organisation listed as the Project Owner in the grant application form must have approved the submission of the application.
 
Requirements relating to the project manager
Specific requirements relating to the project manager may be stipulated for the individual thematic area/programme.
 
Partners
The collaborating partners in network projects are not to be entered in the grant application form. Actual and/or potential participants in the network are to be listed in the project description.

What can you seek funding for?

See here for more detailed information about what to enter in the project budget.

Funding may be sought to cover the following costs:
  • Direct project expenses:
    • costs relating to carrying out network activities such as rental of premises and other meeting expenses;
  • Payroll expenses for a Norwegian coordinator/project manager in accordance with the Research Council’s rates;
  • Procurement of R&D services:
    • smaller reports/analyses;
    • other services, such as facilitating platforms for communication, interaction or dissemination;
  • Other operating expenses:
    • travel and accommodation costs for coordinator and participants;
    • costs relating to publications or materials.

Funding may be used to cover direct expenses relating to others’ participation in the network/activities based on travel expense forms or invoices, provided the costs are consistent with the intent of the allocation.

Calculating support
Funding may be sought to cover budgeted project costs, not to exceed the maximum amount for the relevant thematic area.

Conditions for funding
A prerequisite for funding is that applicants comply with the Research Council’s General Terms and Conditions for R&D Projects.

Support from the Research Council to a research organisation is to be reserved for the organisation’s non-economic activity, and as such therefore does not constitute state aid. The Research Council requires a clear separation of accounts for the organisation’s economic and non-economic activities.

According to the state aid rules, support to an undertaking constitutes state aid. An “undertaking” in this context is defined as any actor that carries out an economic activity consisting of offering products or services on a given market. When an undertaking receives support to cover a portion of its project costs as the Project Owner, this support must be awarded as de minimis aid, pursuant to Commission Regulation (EU) No 1407/2013 of 18 December 2013. This means that enterprises applying for support must fill in a “Declaration form for de minimis aid”. (The form is found at the end of this call.)

Reporting and disbursement of funding
Funding will be disbursed in arrears on the basis of approved progress reports and will cover the actual costs listed above that are recorded in the project accounts.
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Relevant thematic areas for this call

This call is open to all the thematic areas below. Special requirements and guidelines may be indicated in some of the thematic areas. Please remember to select the topics most relevant to your project in the grant application form.

Global development

Enabling technologies

Requirements for this application type

Please note that it is not possible to revise and resubmit grant applications multiple times for calls for proposals with open-ended submission deadlines. It is therefore important that your application is fully completed before you submit it.

Applications must fulfil the following requirements:

  • The applicant/Project Owner must come from an eligible category of institution.
  • The grant application must lie within the scope/satisfy the objectives of this call.
  • The funding amount sought and the expenses to be covered and any own funding must be in keeping with the framework of the call.
  • The budget must be formulated correctly to clearly indicate what the funding will cover.
  • The application form must be fully completed.
  • The required attachments must be included using the designated templates.
  • The project description must provide answers to the items set out in the text of the call.
  • Grant applications and all attachments may be submitted in Norwegian or English.
  • All attachments must be uploaded in PDF format.

Mandatory attachments

  • a project description, using the designated template found at the end of this call;
  • for companies defined as “undertakings” in the state aid rules: signed “Declaration form for de minimis aid”, using the designated template found at the end of this call.

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

Optional attachments

  • A CV for the coordinator/project manager using the designated template found at the end of this call;
  • CVs for key project participants in the network, if required under the relevant thematic area, using the designated template found at the end of this call;
  • any other attachments required under the relevant thematic area.

Links to websites and documents, as well as other attachments than those specified above, will not be included in the application review process. There is no technical validation of the content of the attachments you upload, so please make sure that you upload the correct file for the selected type of attachment.

Assessment criteria

Grant applications will be assessed by the Research Council administration 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

Grant applications will be assessed by the Research Council administration.

Notification of the outcome from the Research Council will normally be provided within one month after receipt of the application, unless otherwise specified under the relevant thematic area. For certain activities, grant applications are collected and assessed at set dates throughout the year.