Fifth competition launched in FIRST TEAM, HOMING and POWROTY/REINTEGRATION programmes

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From today, 8 January, through 5 March 2018, applications may be filed in the 5th competition in the FIRST TEAM, HOMING and POWROTY/REINTEGRATION programmes. The programmes offer a total of PLN 37 million in funding.

The funds, derived from the Smart Growth Operational Programme, may be sought by recent PhDs (up to five years after earning their doctorate), regardless of nationality, representing all fields of inquiry. The projects must be carried out in cooperation with a scientific partner (Polish or foreign) and must include groundbreaking R&D work of international standing, with great importance for the economy and society.

The FIRST TEAM programme offers young researchers funds of c. PLN 2 million to establish their first research team. Funding may be awarded for three years, with a possible one-year extension. Projects may be pursued at research institutions, enterprises, or scientific/industrial consortia in Poland. The pool of funds earmarked for the current competition is PLN 25 million.

The POWROTY and HOMING programmes offer “return,” reintegration or postdoctoral grants. HOMING is targeted to young PhDs seeking to return to Poland from abroad, for example following doctoral studies or a fellowship, or to come to Poland for a postdoctoral fellowship. POWROTY/REINTEGRATION is designed for researchers who interrupted their scientific work at an earlier stage in their career and wish to return to science. Both programmes offer individual grants of up to c. PLN 800,000 for two years. Projects may be pursued at scientific institutions or enterprises.

The Foundation for Polish Science intends to spend a total of PLN 12 million on the current competitions in the HOMING and POWROTY/REINTEGRATION programmes.

Among other things, funding may be used for researchers’ salaries. The project manager may apply for coverage of monthly salary costs of up to PLN 17,500 in the HOMING and POWROTY/REINTEGRATION programmes or up to PLN 20,000 in the FIRST TEAM programme. The winner may spend up to PLN 15,000 per month on total employment costs for hiring a young PhD, up to PLN 8,000 for a doctoral student, and up to PLN 4,000 for an undergraduate. It is also possible to pay out stipends (of PLN 1,500 to 4,500 per month), fund subcontracted work, training and internships as part of staff development, and cover other costs connected with conducting R&D work.

Funding is also available to firms operating in Poland. They are eligible to receive up to 80% financing for projects based on rules for the award of state aid.

Funding may be awarded to projects in accordance with the topics indicated in the list of National Smart Specializations (note that a revised list is in force from 1 January 2018).

Detailed information and contact details for the programme officers are available at the websites for each of the programmes: FIRST TEAM, HOMING and POWROTY/REINTEGRATION.

Pictured: Dr Joanna Olesiak-Bańska, a winner in the 3rd competition for the FIRST TEAM programme. Photo: OneHD