Project changes as a result of the coronavirus
All significant changes to ongoing projects are to be reported, as previously, via My RCN Web as project changes. This measure applies to 2020.
Coronavirus-related delays and project extensions
If you anticipate delays in the project, we ask you to submit a change notification when you have a sufficient overview of the changes that are necessary, which will enable a revised project plan to be devised. This will be granted for projects whose delays are due to the coronavirus situation.
We can approve an extension of the project period by up to six months for ongoing projects.
Projects that include foreign partners can apply for a further extension (for a total of one year) if the activities linked to the foreign partners cannot go ahead as planned.
Projects on hold
We will accept a Project Owner’s wish to put both an ongoing and new project on hold. The grounds for such a suspension must be related to the coronavirus situation. The start-up date for new projects must be 1 October 2020 at the latest.
We can accept a project being put on hold/postponed for up to six months for ongoing projects.
This does not apply to a Researcher Project with a start-up deadline of 1 December 2020.
Projects that are not feasible
If you anticipate that you cannot carry out the project as planned due to the consequences of the coronavirus situation, the force majeure clause will apply. We cover actual costs until the time it is concluded that the project cannot continue. You must report this on My RCN Web as soon as you become aware of the situation.
Increase or redistribution of project costs
The allocation to the project will not be increased even if the project costs increase due to the coronavirus situation.
There was an exemption for the period from March when Norway went into lockdown. In collaboration with Universities Norway and in consultation with the Association of Norwegian Research Institutes (FFA), the Research Council introduced measures to extend and fund employment periods for doctoral and post-doctoral fellows. This entailed the employer making an assessment of the individual’s needs and communicating this to the Research Council.
We can change the distribution of costs over time and between parties for a limited period of time. All changes that affect project costs, and the distribution of costs between the Project Owner and partners must be reported via My RCN Web, and we will assess each individual case.
If it is not possible to carry out the project activities planned in the present year, we encourage you to postpone the activities to another year. We will be able to move parts of the allocation for the present year to 2021 or subsequent years. This must be applied for in the form of a project change notification by 31 December 2020 at the latest.
Change in own financing
Projects that include own financing from the Project Owner research organisation (higher education sector, institutes) can continue even if their own financing is withdrawn. This must be reported via My RCN Web and we will assess each individual case.
Change in partners
Funding to projects or centres that have received support from the Research Council in 2020 will not be reduced even if partners withdraw or reduce their contributions. If the situation entails a change in the project’s or centre’s partnership constellations, the distribution of funding will be re-assessed based on the new constellation.
Despite fluctuating exchange rates, the exchange rate that applies on submission of the revised application applies to the project period.
Cancelled meetings and project activities
If you have to cancel planned meetings/seminars/workshops or have been awarded event or network funding and it has not been possible to carry out the activity, we can cover incurred and non-refundable costs. What is covered will be assessed on a case to case basis. An invoice must be submitted, as described in the contract, in order for the costs to be covered. We may ask for further documentation showing that the costs have not been covered by others.
Events and meetings organised by the Research Council
If you have been invited to a meeting or sizable event organised by us that has been cancelled, we will refund the travel expenses we would otherwise have covered if you can document that your travel insurance, airline or hotel will not refund your travel expenses.
Changes in research stays abroad for research fellows and researchers
Measures due to the coronavirus pandemic
Research fellows and researchers who must travel to their home countries or must cancel their stay abroad due to the coronavirus situation must report this via My RCN Web as a project change request. They will not lose their grants, but funding that is not spent may be withdrawn.
Postdoctoral fellows who were granted a stay abroad and extension of their postdoctoral period at the same time, will retain the postdoctoral fellowship part regardless of their stay abroad.
The Research Council can cover a new round-trip plane tickets for research fellows, and their families, who terminated their stay abroad due to the coronavirus pandemic and who want to return to their host institution to complete their work. The Research Council can also increase the travel grant for recipients who applied for and were granted a travel grant before the epidemic broke out if the price of plane tickets has increased since they applied for funding, and if the Project Owner is unable to cover the additional costs.
The Project Owner is responsible for contacting the Research Council and applying for more support for travel. This dialogue takes place via ‘My RCN Web’ > Projects /Reports > Project changes.
Changes in guest lecturer stays
The Research Council can increase the amount of support for travel for recipients who applied for and were granted support before the pandemic broke out if the price of plane tickets has increased since they applied for funding, and if the Project Owner is unable to cover the additional costs.
The Project Owner is responsible for contacting the Research Council and applying for more support for travel.