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 form. 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)

As a general rule, 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 who is authorised to represent and commit the Project Owner in respect of 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 notification of the outcome of the application review process, and will be the party responsible for following up the project in the event funding is granted.

In cases where the Project Owner is reporting on behalf of multiple research-performing partners, the exchange of 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 concept “research organisation” and a list of approved research organisations.

See also the definition of the concept 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 the business sector, special interest organisations or the non-profit sector.

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 for information regarding scientific qualifications.

Project description requirements

All applications must be accompanied by a project description. Size restrictions will be specified in the call for proposals.

It is not possible to upload project descriptions that exceed 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 submission deadline unless we have requested 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. For all projects that are awarded funding, we will ask the Project Owner to draw up a data management plan.

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

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

Requirements relating to protection of personal data in the project

In accordance with our general terms and conditions for projects, the Project Owner must comply with applicable laws and regulations. This includes data protection legislation. All Norwegian universities, most university colleges, as well as many health authorities and research institutes have signed an agreement with the Norwegian Centre for Research Data (NSD) on assistance in the field of personal data protection. Visit NSD's website for more information about assistance with personal data protection in research, or visit the Norwegian Data Protection Authority's website for more information on the processing of personal data in research.

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 gender perspectives.pdf

Charter and Code

Research funded by the Research Council is to be performed in accordance with the principles of 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 any impact the research projects may have on the external environment. The project description should therefore discuss whether the use of the results from the projects will have any significant environmental impact (positive or negative). If the answer is yes, the following questions must be answered:

  • Is the need for research related to this environmental impact?
  • Has the project defined objectives or secondary objectives with a view to shedding light on the environmental impact?

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