SNSF Starting Grants 2023: 67 projects approved

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The SNSF is awarding approx. 115 million francs to projects selected as part of the SNSF Starting Grants 2023 transitional measure.

After a two-stage evaluation process, the SNSF selected 67 projects for funding out of the 447 applications evaluated for SNSF Starting Grants 2023. A budget of approx. 115 million francs will cover the costs of 66 projects. In addition, the Swiss Parkinson's Foundation will finance a project on multi-systemic atrophy. Research work will continue for five years on average.

Due to Switzerland's status as a non-associated third country in Horizon Europe, the SNSF has once again launched a call for proposals for the SNSF Starting Grants transitional measure on behalf of the federal government. The SNSF Starting Grants 2023 call was aimed at scientists wishing to launch their own project in Switzerland with their own team.

New this year: the PRIMA funding scheme for outstanding female researchers has been integrated into the SNSF Starting Grants. Of the 44 female researchers supported, 14 are funded with 24 million francs from the PRIMA budget.

Better success rate for female researchers

This year, even without taking into account PRIMA grantees, the success rate for women (14.2%) was higher than that for men (10.0%). When the grantees of the budget reserved for women are taken into account, the success rate for women is 20.8%. The overall success rate was 15.2%.

Almost 68% of grant recipients will carry out their research project at a university, 29% in the ETH Domain and 3% at other institutions. A further 12% will come from abroad to carry out their SNSF Starting Grant project in Switzerland.

Next call for SNSF Starting Grants

The SNSF launched a new call for SNSF Starting Grants 2024 on 1 November 2023. Researchers interested in this call for proposals can take part in the online information event the SNSF will be hosting on 17 November, from 10 a.m. to 11.30 a.m. A link to the event is provided below.

Some examples of funded projects

Life sciences
Recent studies have shown that bacteria largely colonise cancer cells and immune cells. Arianna Calcinotto from the Università della Svizzera italiana is studying whether intracellular bacteria can contribute to increasing the aggressiveness of breast cancer.

Humanities and social sciences
In her research project, Anja Hasse (University of Zurich) is studying the creation of new Alemannic dialects in certain parts of the traditionally Rhaeto-Romanic region of Graubünden. By interviewing linguistic communities, she aims to show how new dialects emerge and how they function grammatically.

Mathematics, natural and engineering sciences
The performances of conventional optical devices are limited by their reliance on simple optical properties. In his project, Karim Achouri (EPFL) will design advanced optical metamaterials whose complex optical properties will boost the efficiency of current optical systems and telecommunications.