PublISHED ON 10 November 2020
UpDATED ON 11 November 2020
New features in Swedish Research Council calls 2021
At present, 35 calls are planned for 2021. Many of them are recurrent. Among those is the international postdoc grant, but we have made some changes to it for next year. Some calls are being issued for the first time. One of those is a call for multisectoral graduate schools in development research, another is for a grant for investment in existing research infrastructure.
Below is a list of calls that have been changed, and calls that we are issuing for the first time. We have also included calls that are not issued every year. Please note that not all the detailed terms and conditions for the calls have been decided yet. Full instructions in the form of call texts will be published when the call in question opens.
Further calls may be added, for example if we receive a Government mandate.
Next year’s call for international postdoc grant includes some changes aimed at increasing the flexibility of the grant and making life easier for applicants:
- Persons who have not yet been awarded their doctoral degree can apply for the grant. However, you must have been awarded a doctoral degree before you sign the grant terms and conditions, and before the grant period begins.
- The two previous standard items (salary costs and research expenses) have been joined together, and increased from 1 050 000 SEK/year to 1 150 000 SEK/year.
- We are introducing a fixed standard amount grant of 50 000 SEK/year for accompanying family members. The standard grant amount is the same, irrespective of the number of accompanying family members.
For medicine and health, natural and engineering sciences, humanities and social sciences, and educational sciences, a call for the grant will be issued twice per year. For artistic research and development research, a call for the grant will be issued once per year.
The Swedish Research Council is investing a total of 35 million SEK in healthcare research.
To strengthen the area, the Swedish Research Council is earmarking 28 million SEK for a call for grants for research time in healthcare research. The aim of the grant is to give active healthcare professionals the opportunity to conduct research on a half-time basis and to establish themselves as independent researchers. This shall be done in parallel with developing professional competence. To apply for the grant, you must have completed a doctoral degree no more than 10 years ago. The grant period is 3 years, and the grant is a standard amount of 1 850 000 SEK/year.
A further 7 million SEK is earmarked to fund two international postdoc grants focused on healthcare research. These grants can be applied for within the framework of the call for international postdoc grants in medicine and health.
“We have listened to the views of the medical faculties on how the healthcare research area should best be strengthened and developed for the future. They raised the issue of lack of research time as a major problem, and we are therefore creating these opportunities,” says Madeleine Durbeej-Hjalt, Secretary General of Medicine and Health at the Swedish Research Council.
In spring 2020, the Swedish Research Council decided to boost basic virus research with 100 million SEK over the years 2020–2024. In June, we issued a call for career support in the area. In spring 2021, we will follow up this initiative with a call for project grants. For this call too, the focus is on long-term research into basic virology and fundamental disease mechanisms caused by viruses.
The grant period is 1–3 years, and the maximum grant amount is 2.5 million SEK per year. You may not apply for this grant if you are the project leader for ongoing career support in basic virology research.
The sustainability goals in Agenda 2030 shall be the starting point for the graduate schools, which are welcome to focus on several of the goals, and how these relate to each other. The graduate schools shall stimulate learning and cooperation between different disciplines – and we welcome disciplines that, despite being relevant, still are not well-represented in development research.
The main applicant shall be a Swedish higher education institution (HEI), and at least two other Swedish HEIs shall be included in the application. In addition, at least one HEI from a low income and/or lower middle income country shall be included.
The aim is to fund three graduate schools. Each one will receive a maximum of 2 million SEK per year, for a maximum of four years.
The grant shall be used to invest in existing research infrastructure of national interest. It may be used to pay for equipment, technical development, construction, or supplementary data collection for research databases. On the other hand, the grant cannot be used for major new investments that change or expand the focus of the infrastructure in a significant way.
The cost of the investments shall be at least 8 million SEK, but exceptions may be made in areas where even a smaller amount may entail a significant investment.
Organisations only can apply for this grant, and the organisation shall be responsible for operation, maintenance and user support. The infrastructure does not need to be receiving support from the Swedish Research Council, but on the other hand it must fulfil the requirements set by the Swedish Research Council on national research infrastructure.
This career support is aimed at persons who were awarded a doctoral degree two to seven years ago. The aim is to give junior researchers the opportunity to establish themselves as independent researchers in Sweden. The grant period is four years.
“Starting grants are important for the continuity and regrowth of Swedish educational sciences research. It can be difficult for junior researchers to compete for project funding with well-established researchers,” says Jörgen Tholin, Secretary General of Educational Sciences.
Since a few years back, the Swedish Research Council has been issuing calls for starting grants also in medicine and health and in natural and engineering sciences.
Graduate schools in educational sciences
The purpose of the grant is to increase competence in the educational sciences field, and to increase collaboration nationally and internationally by contributing to third cycle higher education activities.
The graduate schools may focus on education at pre-school, primary or secondary school level. Applications in areas with major needs for building up research capacity will be prioritised. The priority areas are: 1) Development of and challenges to democracy in Sweden and the world, 2) Working conditions of pre-school and school teachers, 3) Quantitatively focused educational science analysis, 4) Learning in a digitised world – handling everyday life and competences for the future, and 5) Increasing variations in school performance.
The grant period is four years, and the maximum grant amount is 3 million SEK per year. A call for this grant was most recently issued three years ago.
Graduate schools for teacher educators
The initiative is based on a Government mandate. The purpose is to strengthen the scientific basis in teacher and pre-school teacher training, and to ensure more teachers giving these training courses have completed third cycle higher education. In this way, it is possible to expand the teaching capacity while maintaining quality.
The graduate schools shall focus on a subject or a theme that is relevant for teacher training, and for practicing the teaching profession. The grant period is 4–5 years, and the grant amount is maximum 10 million SEK per year for 4 years, or maximum 8 million SEK per year for 5 years. A call for this grant was most recently issued in 2019.
Next year, the Swedish Research Council will be issuing calls for the distinguished professor programme only in medicine and health and in natural and engineering sciences. The aim of the grant is to create opportunities for the most prominent researchers to conduct long-term, ground-breaking research and build up major research environments. Stefan Svallfors, Secretary General of Humanities and Social Sciences, explains why a call for the distinguished professor programme will not be made in humanities and social sciences in 2021:
“The Scientific Council for Humanities and Social Sciences have made the assessment that funding for excellent research in their fields produces the optimal benefits when used to support medium-sized research environments in the medium term. For this reason, the funding that was previously used for the distinguished professor programme will hereafter be redirected to strengthen the funding of research environments,” says Stefan Svallfors.
A call for grants to research environments was issued last spring. The next call will be made in 2022.
This long-term support is aimed primarily at new, multidisciplinary groupings with researchers with differing scientific backgrounds. The grant aims to enable multidisciplinary research leading to ground-breaking new knowledge. We issue a call for grants to multidisciplinary research environments every third year.
Please note that this call opens already in December, as opposed to all others, which open in 2021.
Every year, we issue calls for a number of grants in collaboration with other countries. In 2021, for example, we will be funding grants for research collaboration between India and Sweden. Another call relates to research collaboration between China and Sweden, and yet another to project grants for Röntgen-Ångström, which is a German-Swedish research collaboration in structural biology and materials science. The formats for these calls may vary a bit, as they are sometimes administered by one of our collaborating partners.
We also issue calls for research funding within the framework of the EU’s partnership programmes, such as ERA PerMed, FLAG-ERA, JPND and JPIAMR.
PUBLISHED ON 10 November 2020
UpDATED ON 11 November 2020