National Research Programmes (NRPs)
Research where it is needed most. Calls for four new NRPs in the areas of "Baukultur", biodiversity, gender medicine and plant breeding.
The National Research Programmes (NRPs) promote research projects that contribute to solving societal challenges of national importance. Federal offices, research institutes, research groups or individuals propose topics and potential priorities for an NRP to the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI). The Federal Council definitively selects the NRPs and assigns them to the SNSF for implementation.
In the starting blocks: four new NRPs
Submission deadline for pre-proposals: 29.02.2024
- NRP 81 "Baukultur. For an Ecological and Social Transformation of the Built Environment" (budget CHF 10.6 million)
- NRP 82 "Promoting Biodiversity and Sustainable Ecosystem Services for Switzerland" (budget CHF 15.5 million)
Submission deadline for pre-proposals: 14.03.2024
- NRP 83 "Gender Medicine and Health" (budget CHF 11.0 million)
- NRP 84 "Innovations in Plant Breeding" (budget CHF 10.0 million)
NRPs are distinguished by the following characteristics:
- they are solution-oriented and close to the practical realm;
- they are interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary;
- the research projects of an NRP jointly pursue an overall goal;
- knowledge transfer and the communication of results are valued highly.
Selection of topics
Once a new NRP round has been opened, interested parties can submit topics for research programmes to the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI). The SERI drafts programme proposals based on these submissions and tasks the SNSF with conducting feasibility studies. In a second phase, the SNSF prepares programme concepts for the proposed programmes that received a positive assessment in the feasibility study. The Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAER) then asks the Federal Council to approve the NRPs and their budgets, and the Federal Council mandates the SNSF to conduct the NRPs.
Further information can be found on the SERI website.
Calls for NRPs are launched periodically. The requirements and procedure for submitting applications are set out in the relevant call documents and on the NRP-specific websites. The SNSF's Funding Regulations and General implementation regulations for the Funding Regulations apply.
Calls for NRPs are launched periodically. The public call for proposals invites researchers to submit project proposals. It defines the objectives and research priorities as well as the evaluation procedure for the applications submitted. The calls are announced on the websites and social media channels as well as in the SNSF and NRP newsletters.
Applications to the NRP are submitted in two stages. The first step is the submission of pre-proposals. In a second step, the shortlisted projects are asked to submit full proposals. Information on the submission of project proposals is provided in the call documents, including the relevant deadlines and evaluation criteria. It is not possible to submit applications once the call for proposals has closed.
Can researchers submit projects for an ongoing NRP?
Projects can only be submitted for the duration of the call. The submission of all project proposals in the same period guarantees competition as it allows evaluators to draw comparisons between the different proposals.
When and to whom can one propose topics for National Research Programmes (NRPs)?
Interested parties, institutes and offices can periodically (approx. every 2-3 years) propose topics for NRPs to the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation. Once the proposals have been collected and the necessary feasibility studies conducted, the Federal Council mandates the SNSF to run 2-4 NRPs on average.
How is an NRP project different from other SNSF projects?
NRP projects are practice-oriented. They focus on developing solutions for the issues defined in the calls for proposals. At the same time, cooperation and the exchange of knowledge with practitioners are of great importance. The programme projects are supervised by the Steering Committee and coordinated with each other. The focus is on data exchange, the implementation of methodological seminars, the exchange of results and cooperation in programme synthesis. Researchers are expected to participate in cross-programme activities.