Comenius Leadership Fellows 2021

Experienced professionals in higher education can apply for a grant of 500.000 euros and a Comenius Leadership Fellowship. With the Leadership Fellow project, the Leadership Fellow must have an impact on education in several faculties or in an entire educational institution.

  • Purpose

    The aim of the Comenius programme is to give impetus to educational innovation and improvements by professionals in higher education.

    Projects have a duration of three academic years, plus any start-up period from the time the grant is awarded until the start of the academic year.

    The Comenius Leadership Fellow projects involve implementing an educational innovation across several faculties or an entire institution. Basis for the innovation is the vision on innovation and higher education of the main applicant. The projects can give impetus to the education ambitions formulated in the institution's strategic education plan.

  • Who can apply

    Applications can be submitted by education professionals working in publicly- funded higher education institutes in the Netherlands. Each institution may only submit one Leadership Fellow application.

    The Leadership Fellow must, through their experience and network, have a broad view of the field of education and be well-informed of current developments in the field of the intended innovation. The Leadership Fellow must have educational leadership qualities and a demonstrable impact on the educational climate in their own institution. The Leadership Fellow must demonstrate, with the Comenius project and through membership of the ComeniusNetwork, their ambition to develop into an educational leader at the national level and to inspire colleagues.

    In addition, the Leadership Fellow (possibly through the composition of the project team), should have the mandate and 'sway’ to implement this innovation within the faculty or institution.

  • What to apply for

    A budget of up to 500.000 euro is available for each project. The requested budget may not exceed 500.000 euro and may not be less than 450.000.

    Applications can be submitted for projects with a duration of at least 36 months and at most 42 months. The start date of a project cannot be before the planned announcement of the decision, so not before the 1st of May 2021.

  • When to apply

    The timely submission of a letter of intent is a prerequisite for submitting a full application.

    • Deadline letter of intent: 3th of September 2020, 14:00 hours CE(S)T.
    • Deadline application: 8th of October 2020, 14:00 hours CE(S)T.
  • Assessment


    The full applications will be assessed on the basis of the following main criteria:

    1. Innovative nature of the project
    2. Expected result of the project
    3. Quality of the project plan
    4. Teaching profile of the applicant 

    Specific criteria for each tier can be found in the Call for Proposals.


    The applications admitted for processing are submitted to a number of independent referees (from the Netherlands and abroad) for commenting. These serve as input for the preliminary advices of the committee members (pre-advisors). The applicant receives the prelimiary advices and is given eigth work days time to formulate a response.

    The application files (consisting of the original application, the referees’  comments, the preliminary advices and the applicant’s response) are then sent to the assessement committee. The committee assigns a score to each application and prioritises the applications. The (maximum) 8 most promising applicants are invited for an interview with (a delegation of) the assessment committee.

    After the interviews, the assessment committee - again - assigns a score to the proposals. All applications are –again –assigned a qualification based on the weighted average score, for which the above scale is again used. Only applications that receive at least the qualification ‘ good’' for all criteria will be eligible for funding.

    The assessment committee prioritises the proposals and advises the Minister of Education, Culture and Science on the applications to be honoured.

You will find all of the documents that you need for your application here. Applications must be submitted through the ISAAC application and reporting system. If you do not have an ISAAC account yet, then please create one at least one workday in advance. More information about writing a proposal and which forms you need to use can be found below. Please download and use the forms below.

Closed for applications