15 March 2019
Scientific coordinators announce the OPUS 17 call for research projects in which researchers may act as principal investigators, regardless of their career stage and academic degree/ title. Under the call, funds may be awarded for remuneration of the research team, scholarship for under- and post-graduate students, purchase or manufacturing of research equipment and other costs crucial to the research project.
Proposals may be filed solely electronically via ZSUN/OSF, available at https://osf.opi.org.pl, in compliance with the proposal submission procedure.
The proposal submission deadline is 17 June 2019.
Please read the call documents provided in this announcement. The Council of the National Science Centre decides to allocate PLN 300,000,000 for research projects to be carried out under the OPUS 17 call for proposals.
The proposal form in ZSUN/OSF and guidelines for drafting proposals will be made available at a later date.
Proposals in the call may be submitted by any entity specified in the Act on the National Science Centre (NCN), namely:
2. federation of science and HE entities;
3. research institute of the Polish Academy of Sciences, operating pursuant to the Act on the Polish Academy of Sciences of 30 April 2010 (Journal of Laws of 2018, item 1475);
4. research institutes operating pursuant to the Act on Research Institutes of 30 April 2010 (Journal of Laws of 2018, item 736);
5. international research institutes established pursuant to separate Acts, operating in the Republic of Poland;
5a. the Łukasiewicz Centre;
5b. Institute operating within the Łukasiewicz Research Network;
6. Polish Academy of Arts and Sciences;
7. other institutions involved in research independently on a continuous basis;
8. group of entities comprising at least two entities mentioned in sections 1-7 or at least one institution as such together with at least one company;
9. scientific and industrial centres within the meaning of the Act on Research Institutes (Journal of Laws of 2018, item 736);
10. research centres of the Polish Academy of Sciences within the meaning of the Act on the Polish Academy of Sciences of 30 April 2010;
11. scientific libraries;
12. companies operating as R&D centres within the meaning of the Act on Certain Forms of Support for Innovative Activity of 30 May 2008 (Journal of Laws of 2018, item 141);
13. legal entity established with registered office in Poland;
14. natural persons and
15. company conducting research in another organisational form than laid down in sections 1-13.
A person whose scientific achievements include at least one research paper published or accepted for publication may act as the principal investigator. In the case of research in the arts, the principal investigator should have at least one paper published or accepted for publication or at least one artistic achievement or achievement in research in art completed. Scientific achievements should cover the period of the last 10 years before the year of the proposal (as of 2009). In specific cases, the period can be extended (par. 7 (6) (a) of the . Resolution on the terms of the OPUS call for proposals).
Yes. Restrictions to submitting proposals are detailed in Chapter III of the Regulations on awarding funding for the implementation of research tasks funded by the National Science Centre as regards research projects.
Proposals may be submitted to the call covering basic research in any of 25 NCN panels within the core areas: HS – Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences; ST – Physical Sciences and Engineering; NZ – Life Sciences. Proposals shall be reviewed within the panels (e.g. HS1, ST1, NZ1). The principal investigator shall select the panel. If an incorrect panel is selected, proposals may be rejected. Please note that new amended NCN panels applicable to the calls have been in place since 14 December 2018.
In the call, research projects may be planned for a period of 12 months, 24 months or 36 months.
Preparation of a breakdown of costs for a research project is one of the major stages in project planning. Focus should be aimed at identifying the required resources and exact estimation of costs. A breakdown of costs must be justified versus the subject-matter and scope of research, based on realistic calculations and specifying the expenditures to be covered by the NCN (eligible expenses).
The terms of the call do not specify the total minimum or maximum amount of funds to be applied for.
Costs in the project will include direct costs and indirect costs.
Direct costs shall include:
- full-time employment salary: funds may be acquired for full-time employment of the principal investigator or persons employed as post-doc(s);
- additional salary that can be used to finance the remuneration for members of the research team and
- remuneration and scholarships for under- and post-graduate students;
- purchase or manufacturing of research equipment, instruments and software;
- purchase of materials and small instruments;
- business trips, visits and consultations;
- compensation for collective investigators and
- other costs crucial to the project that are compliant with the catalogue of costs for research projects funded by the NCN.
Indirect costs may be a maximum of 40% of direct costs with the exception of the amount for the purchase or manufacturing of research equipment, instruments and software. During the project implementation, the host institution shall agree with the principal investigator the coverage of a minimum of 25% of the indirect costs.
When developing the breakdown of costs, it is necessary to comply with the regulations relating to the costs planned for the project, including the remuneration and scholarship budget specified in the catalogue of costs for research projects funded by the NCN.
If unjustified costs are planned, proposals may be rejected.
The terms of the call do not specify the minimum or maximum number of members of the research team. However, the rationale for their involvement in the project shall be assessed by the expert team. The proposal shall detail the competencies and tasks to be performed by each member of the research team. Detailed information on the remuneration and scholarship budget is provided in the catalogue of costs for research projects funded by the NCN.
Please note that recipients of NCN scholarships or persons employed as post-docs in the project must be selected in an open call.
Yes, except where a natural person applies for funding. Detailed information can be found on the State aid page.
All documents concerning proposals for state aid shall be signed with a qualified electronic signature in the PAdES format.
Proposals shall be subject to an eligibility check and merit based-evaluation.
Eligibility check shall be carried out by the coordinators. Only complete proposals that comply with all the requirements set out in the call announcement shall be accepted for merit-based evaluation.
Merit-based evaluations shall be performed in two stages.
At the first stage, proposals shall undergo a qualification check based on the data included in the proposal and attachments thereto, with the exception of the full project description. The qualification check shall consist in:
- individual reviews drafted by two members of the expert team and
- expert team’s verdict at the first meeting consisting in discussing the individual reviews.
After the discussion on all proposals, a ranking long list of proposal approved for the second stage of evaluation shall be drafted.
At the second stage, proposals shall undergo specialist evaluation based on the data included in the proposal and attachments thereto, with the exception of the short project description. The specialist evaluation shall consist in:
- individual reviews drafted by at least two external experts and
- team’s verdict delivered consisting in discussing the individual reviews.
After the discussion on all proposals, a ranking short list of proposal recommended for funding shall be drafted.
Additional information on the proposal evaluation procedure can be found in the Detailed procedure of evaluating proposals by expert teams.
PLEASE NOTE! The short and full project descriptions shall only be drawn up in English.
The evaluation of proposals shall focus in particular on:
- compliance with the criterion of basic research;
- quality of the research or project tasks to be performed;
- innovative nature of the research problem addressed;
- project’s impact on the development of the scientific discipline;
- research track record of the principal investigator, including publications in reputable academic journals;
- evaluation of the results of research projects conducted by the principal investigator, funded by the NCN or from other sources;
- evaluation of feasibility of the project’s completion;
- relevance of the planned costs to the subject and scope of research and
- in addition, preparation of the proposal and compliance with other requirements set forth in the call announcement shall be reviewed.
Evaluation of proposals shall be performed by the expert team. Experts are selected by the NCN Council from among outstanding Polish and foreign scientists, holding a minimum of a doctoral degree. Expert teams are established for each call edition. The composition of the expert team shall be subject to the number and subjects of proposals submitted to each panel.
Proposals shall be evaluated pursuant to the Criteria for evaluating proposals submitted under the OPUS call for proposals.
The call results shall be announced on the NCN’s website and communicated to the applicants by way of a decision by the NCN Director within 6 months of the deadline for submission of proposals, by December 2019 at the latest.
Read the Information for applicants available on the NCN's website.
Should you have any questions, please contact us by e-mail: email@example.com or by phone: +48 12 341 90 00.
If you plan to submit a proposal in the OPUS 17 call:
- read all call documents included in the call announcement, in particular:
- the Resolution on the terms of the OPUS call for proposals;
- specimen proposal form, where you can find out about information and annexes needed to complete the electronic proposal form in ZSUN/OSF;
- Regulations on awarding funding for the implementation of research tasks funded by the National Science Centre as regards research projects;
- read the proposal submission procedure;
- decide how long the project is to be: 12, 24 or 36 months;
- obtain data from the applicant that is required to complete the proposal and find out about the internal procedures that may affect the proposal and project performance (cost planned in the project, procedure for acquiring signature(s) or authorised representative(s) of the institution to confirm submission of the proposal);
- draw up:
- a summary of the research project as well as short and full project descriptions (in English);
- projects’ abstract for the general public (in Polish and in English);
- when the proposal is submitted by a group of entities, draw up an Agreement on collaboration for the purposes of completion of the requested research project and
- prepare acceptance letters from publishers confirming that the work has been accepted for publication (when the scientific achievements section includes papers accepted for publication that have not been published yet).
Before the proposal is submitted to the NCN:
- check if all information in and annexes to the proposal are correct. The verification of the proposal for completeness in ZSUN/OSF by pressing the Sprawdź kompletność [Check completeness] button does not guarantee that all information has been entered correctly and that the required annexes have been attached.
- disable the final version of the proposal to NCN;
- download and sign the confirmation of submitting the proposal in the call– the principal investigator and authorised representative(s) of the entity and
- attach the confirmation of submitting the proposal with a signature.
Once the proposal is completed and required annexes attached, the proposal shall be electronically submitted to the NCN via the ZSUN/OSF platform using the Wyślij do NCN [Send to NCN] button.
Once the call for proposals has been closed:
- evaluation of proposals shall be carried out;
- after each stage of evaluation, the funding decision by the NCN Director shall be announced;
- if the proposal is qualified for funding, a Funding Agreement shall be entered into;
- the project will be carried out pursuant to the Funding Agreement and Regulations on the implementation of research projects, fellowships and scholarships.
In the event of a breach of the call procedure or other formal infringements, the applicant may appeal against the decision of the NCN Director with the Committee of Appeals of the NCN Council. The appeal shall be lodged within 14 days of the effective delivery of the decision.
- Resolution on the terms of the OPUS call for proposals
- Regulations on awarding funding for the implementation of research tasks funded by the National Science Centre as regards research projects
- NCN panels
- Regulations for awarding scholarships in the NCN-funded research projects
- Costs in research projects funded by NCN
- Proposal form template
- State aid
- Guidelines for completing the ethics issues section of the proposal
- The Code of the National Science Centre on research integrity and applying for research funding
- Proposal evaluation criteria
- Expert Teams of the National Science Centre - formation and appointing
- Code of ethics for experts of the National Science Centre
- Detailed procedure of evaluating proposals by expert teams
- Proposal submission procedure
- Rules for delivering the NCN Director’s decisions
- Guidelines for lodging appeals against the NCN Director’s decisions
- Regulation on the implementation of inspection procedure at the registered office of the host institution
- Guidelines for entities auditing the implementation of research projects funded by the National Science Centre