The NCN to finance new projects in basic research


czwartek, 20 listopada 2014

Recently concluded OPUS 7, PRELUDIUM 7 & SONATA 7 calls contribute over € 67 million to basic research in Poland.

In response to the three calls, the NCN received over 5,000 proposals, of which 715 have qualified for funding.

OPUS continues to remain the most popular of the National Science Centre’s funding schemes. Its calls are open to all researchers, regardless of their research experience. The funding from the NCN may help finance different types of research activity: the purchase of equipment, employment of co-investigators, research expeditions etc. In the seventh edition of the OPUS calls, as many as 362 research projects across all three research domains (Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences, Life Sciences, Physical Sciences & Engineering) received aggregate funding of over € 50 million.

Dedicated to early-stage researchers is the PRELUDIUM funding scheme. A person submitting a proposal under the PRELUDIUM call has to be a researcher before completion of their doctorate, therefore it is doctoral candidates who make up the majority of applicants. In the recent edition, funding worth ca. € 6 million was granted to 240 proposals.

In the third of the concluded calls, SONATA 7, proposals were sent in by researchers who had been holders of a doctoral degree for no longer than 5 years. Under this funding scheme grantees may purchase equipment that could be instrumental in developing a unique approach or method. This time funding was granted to 113 projects, with the total sum exceeding € 10 million.

Proposals are assessed by our Experts, in the course of a 2-stage peer review, with additional evaluation carried out by External Reviewers from abroad. We are happy to see the number of foreign reviews steadily increase. In the case of OPUS 7, PRELUDIUM 7 & SONATA 7, the second stage of evaluation had a considerable share of reviews made by Experts from abroad: nearly 50 per cent in Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences, 94 per cent in Life Sciences, and 62 per cent in Physical Sciences and Engineering, said professor Andrzej Jajszczyk, director of the NCN.

Regarding distribution of the funding between research domains, Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences received ca. € 11 million, Life Sciences – over € 28 million, Physical Sciences - Engineering – over € 27 million.

Among the projects in Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences, the largest portion of funding was awarded to Settlement History of Iraqi Kurdistan 2, led by dr hab. Rafał Koliński from the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, a continuation to the research of the history and cultural heritage of the Aqrah-Bardarash plain, which started in 2012. The project, worth € 355,000, will be carried out under the OPUS scheme.

The largest grant in the domain of Life Sciences, amounting to ca. € 473,000, was awarded to the project on metabolic profiling of individuals with classic and genetic risk factors of coronary artery disease, led by doctor Tadeusz Osadnik. It will be carried out at the Silesian Centre for Heart Disease in Zabrze.

The top funding in Physical Sciences and Engineering was given to the project Intelligent Radiation Detector with Inter-pixel Communication and Time of Arrival Measurements for Implementation in Technologies of Extreme Scale of Integration. The Principal Investigator of the project, worth over € 350,000, is professor Grzegorz Deptuch from the AGH University of Science and Technology in Krakow.

The full list of awardees can be found here (available only in Polish).