General application requirements

The general application requirements are presented below. A detailed description of the requirements for grant applications is found in the call for proposals and the appropriate application form with accompanying instructions. All applicants need to follow the instructions accompanying the document. Applications that do not satisfy these requirements will be rejected.

The requirements for grant applications may vary from call to call. Applicants should, therefore, read the text of the call and the clickable instructions in the accompanying application form very carefully.

The Project Owner (formal applicant)

Generally, the formal applicant is to be a Norwegian organisation, company, or public sector entity with a named project administrator.
The Project Owner designates a project administrator authorized to represent and commit the Project Owner regarding the Research Council.

The project administrator is responsible for approving the grant application on behalf of the Project Owner before it is submitted. The application form contains a box that must be checked off for this purpose. The project administrator will be sent a notification of the outcome of the application review process and will be the party responsible for following up on the project in the event funding is granted.

In cases where the Project Owner reports on behalf of multiple research-performing partners, exchanging information between them must be sufficient to enable the project administrator to satisfy the reporting requirements stipulated by the Research Council.

The Research Council has drawn up a document containing the definition and specification of the "research organisation" concept and a list of approved research organisations.

See also the definition of the concept of a public body (opens in new tab).

From and including 2022, all grant recipients (Project Owners and partners) must have a Gender Equality Plan (GEP) (opens in new tab) available on their website. This must be in place when they sign the grant agreement for projects awarded funding from the Research Council. The requirement does not apply to businesses, notable interest organisations, or non-profit sectors.

The project manager

The project manager is the person who, on behalf of the Project Owner, will be responsible for the project's scientific progress.

The project manager will also be the contact for scientific matters during project implementation.

The call for proposals will specify other requirements for the project manager and information regarding scientific qualifications.

Project description requirements

A project description must accompany all applications. Size restrictions will be specified in the call for proposals.

It is impossible to upload project descriptions exceeding the page total stipulated.


The call for proposals will specify the mandatory and optional attachments. More information on attachments may be found in the individual call.

All attachments to grant applications must be submitted together with the application form. We do not accept attachments submitted after the application deadline unless we request additional documentation.

Learn more about the application form and requirements for attachments.

Ethical guidelines

Projects funded by the Research Council are to maintain high ethical standards and uphold fundamental principles for integrity and ethics in research.

Approval from the Norwegian Regional Committees for Medical and Health Research Ethics (REK) is required for all types of medical and health research projects that include trials on humans or involve human biological material.
Approval from REK is also required for the establishment of research biobanks.

More detailed information is available on the REK website.

Data management plans

The Research Council has stipulated requirements relating to self-archiving and open access to scientific articles produced in connection with the R&D projects it funds. We will ask the Project Owner to draw up a data management plan for all projects awarded funding.

The Project Owner must assess the need for a data management plan for all projects awarded funding. This must be explained if the Project Owner believes there will be no need for such a data management plan.

Read more about the Research Council's Principles for Open Science.

Requirements relating to the protection of personal data in the project

By our general terms and conditions for projects, the Project Owner must comply with applicable laws and regulations. This includes data protection legislation. 

All the country's universities and most university colleges, in addition to many health trusts and research institutes, have entered into agreements with Sikt, the Norwegian Agency for Shared Services in Education and Research, on privacy services. Research projects at these institutions must submit a notification form to Sikt if personal data is to be processed. Here you can fill out the notification form for personal data within research or visit the Norwegian Data Protection Authority's website for more information on processing personal data in research.

Most research organisations also have internal data protection officers and/or data protection contacts.

For questions regarding how the Research Council collects and processes personal data in grant applications and project reports, please see our Privacy Statement.

Gender perspectives and gender balance in projects

Gender perspectives are to be incorporated as an integral part of the research funded by the Research Council. The Research Council is working to promote increased recruitment of women to subjects where the percentage of women is low and to develop initiatives to boost the proportion of women in senior academic positions. For more information, please see the Policy for gender balance and Perspectives.pdf

Charter and Code

Research funded by the Research Council is to be performed according to the principles set out by the EU in the "European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct of the Recruitment of Researchers (Charter and Code) (page in Norwegian).

Environmental impact

The Research Council attaches importance to the research projects' impact on the external environment. The project description should, therefore, discuss whether the use of the project results will have any significant environmental impact (positive or negative). If the answer is yes, the following questions must be answered:

  • Is there a need for research related to this environmental impact?
  • Has the project defined secondary objectives to shed light on the ecological impact?

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