Dialogue between research and society: 21 Agora projects approved

As part of the twelfth call for proposals for the Agora funding scheme, the SNSF is funding 21 new projects by researchers who want to make the public more familiar with their work.

Of the 54 applications submitted, the SNSF will support 21 projects under the Agora funding scheme with a total amount of just over 4 million francs, which corresponds to a success rate of 40%. Of the projects funded, 57% are from the humanities and social sciences, 23% from biology and medicine and 20% from mathematics, natural and engineering sciences.

With its Agora funding scheme, the SNSF aims to foster direct dialogue between science and society. Researchers who communicate their scientific work to a lay audience are eligible for funding. By facilitating interaction and openness to other viewpoints, Agora projects promote dialogue between science and society.

Three examples: Mauro Tonolla and Nicola Storielli from the University of Applied Sciences of Southern Switzerland will create an exhibition about the Lago di Cadagno and its ecosystem together with a broad public and present the results on site and as a travelling exhibition. Caroline Weckerle, Yvonne Volkart, Célia Baroux and Meredith Christine Schuman from the University of Zurich want to use digital technologies to allow a young, urban audience to reconnect with plant life, while at the same time strengthening the university's Botanical Garden in its role as an in-person meeting place. Redouan Bshary and his research group from the University of Neuchâtel will work with children to explore the value of collaboration in living systems, using coral reefs as an example.

Interactive Agora map

For the majority of funded projects, events are held in Switzerland. The Agora map makes them visible and provides an overview of current, future and past events. The map also offers contact options and serves as a source of inspiration for researchers who want to launch an Agora project. They can also find further information in the SNSF database.

Agora rolling call

Projects with a budget of up to 50,000 Swiss francs can be submitted at any time, regardless of the official submission deadline. Funding decisions are made within four months.