For funding purposes, the SNSF distinguishes between:
In the funding of projects, careers, infrastructures and science communication, the applicants are free to define the topic and scope of their research projects themselves.
Project funding can be requested by applicants who receive a salary from their home institution but who still need additional funds to carry out their research project. The applicants' own salaries are not covered by the project funding scheme.
The career funding schemes focus on the persons conducting research. Within the scope of a project they have devised, researchers can apply for a fellowship or salary for themselves and - depending on the funding scheme - for further funding to carry out their project.
At the SNSF, the term "Programmes" refers to funding schemes whose basic parameters are pre-defined. These parameters may be of a thematic or conceptual/organisational nature. Some of the SNSF's funding programmes were suggested by researchers or their home institutions, while others were established by political actors.
The funding of infrastructures involves highly specific, earmarked grants whose duration is often very short.
The SNSF supports science communication between researchers as well as communication between researchers and the public. It therefore awards grants for scientific meetings and publications as well as for projects that foster dialogue between science and society.
Supplementary measures comprise very specific, targeted funding schemes that are available to grantees of the SNSF if certain conditions are met.
The SNSF assists researchers in finding the right funding scheme by providing useful advice as well as comprehensive FAQs.