Brussels, 21 April 2006
COST Open Call for Proposals to Support European Cooperation in the field of Scientific and Technical Research (OJ C93/1 21.4.2006).
[...] COST brings together research teams in different countries working on specific topics. It finances networking of nationally funded activities in supporting meetings, conferences, short term scientific exchanges and outreach activities. COST therefore does NOT fund research itself. Currently more than 200 scientific networks (Actions) are supported. Every year approximately 45 new Actions are approved and started.
Developing stronger links amongst European scientists is crucial to building the European Research Area (ERA). COST's main objective is to stimulate new, innovative, interdisciplinary and broad scientific networks in Europe. COST activities are carried out by research teams to strengthen the foundations for building scientific excellence in Europe.
COST invites proposals for Actions contributing to the scientific, economic, cultural or societal development of Europe. Proposals playing a precursor role for other European programmes and/or involving young groups' ideas are especially welcome.
COST is organised in nine scientific and technical Domains (Biomedicine and Molecular Biosciences; Chemistry and Molecular Sciences and Technologies; Earth System Science and Environmental Management; Food and Agriculture, Forests, their Products and Services; Individuals, Society, Culture and Health; Information and Communication Technologies; Materials, Physical and Nanosciences; Transport and Urban Development).
Proponents are invited to indicate their preference for one Domain. Proposals not fitting this broad disciplinary structure are also welcome and will be assessed separately.
Proposals should include researchers from a minimum of five COST member states and should network nationally funded research activities. Their work plan should include no more than four targeted Working Groups and include activities such as meetings, short term scientific missions, work shops, conferences and outreach activities. On average financial support of some EUR 90 000 p.a. as grant for up to 4 years can be expected.
A two stage process will be followed to assess proposals. Preliminary Proposals (maximum 1500 words/3 pages), submitted using the on-line template at www.cost.esf.org/open_call should provide a brief overview of the proposal and its impact. Proposals will be screened for eligibility. Proposals not conforming to the eligibility criteria of COST (e.g. requesting research funding) will be excluded. A pre-selection will rank the remaining Preliminary Proposals of which some 75 per collection date will be invited to submit a Full Proposal. These will be peer reviewed according to the assessment criteria which can be found at www.cost.esf.org/open_call . The decision will normally be taken within six months of the collection date below and the Actions should expect to start about six weeks thereafter.
The first collection date for Preliminary Proposals is 31 May 2006. Full Proposals will be invited by 30 June 2006 for submission by 15 September 2006. The next collection date is expected to be 30 March 2007 Proponents may wish to contact their national COST Coordinator (CNC) for information and guidance.
Proposals must be submitted on-line to the COST Office web site. For details including the criteria, a list of COST Member States and contact details for the COST National Coordinators see www.cost.esf.org/cnc