Rubicon 2022-1

Rubicon aims to encourage talented researchers who recently received their PhD to spend some time at top research institutes outside the Netherlands to further their scientific career.

  • Purpose

    International research experience is often essential for building up one’s scientific career. Rubicon offers talented researchers who have completed their doctorates in the past year the chance to gain experience at a top research institution outside the Netherlands, as international research experience is likely to be an advantage at a later stage in the applicant’s academic career.

    Rubicon is open for all scientific disciplines for a research project at a foreign research institute. For certain typically Dutch topics, there is also a limited opportunity to apply for a research period at an excellent Dutch research institute. However, preference will be given to applicants who apply for a grant to spend time outside the Netherlands.

  • Who can apply

    Postgraduates who are currently engaged in doctoral research or who have been awarded a doctorate in the twelve months preceding the relevant deadline can submit a proposal. Applicants who are still engaged in doctoral research may apply only if their supervisor provides a written declaration approving their thesis.

    Women especially are urged to apply.

    In the five years directly preceding the submission deadline, applicants must have conducted scientific research at an academic research institute in the Netherlands for a period at least equivalent to three years full time.

    Applications must be submitted by individual researchers and not by pairs or teams of researchers.

    Applicants may only submit an application for a Rubicon grant once. You can find the complete list of the eligibility criteria in the call for proposals.

  • What to apply for

    A budget of 2,478,334 euro is available for this submission round. The available budget will be divided in proportion to the number of eligible applications between the units Science, SSH, AES and ZonMw.

    Applicants can apply for a period of up to 24 months at an excellent research institute outside the Netherlands. The minimum duration is 12 months. The eligible costs are your salary including fringe benefits, travel expenses and a limited amount of research costs. Any overhead costs such as housing, computers, infrastructure etc. are not eligible for funding. You can find the standard amounts in the document Rubicon Terms and Conditions.

    It is not possible to combine a stay at several institutes. Fieldwork is allowed, depending on the nature of the research proposed.

  • When to apply

    • The deadline for this round is Tuesday 29 March 2022 at 14:00:00 hours CEST (2 PM sharp).
  • Assessment


    Proposals will be assessed on the basis of the following evaluation criteria:

    • The quality of the research proposal
    • The quality of the host institute
    • Scientific and/or societal impact
    • The quality of the researcher


    Each application will be assessed within the realm of the relevant discipline(s) by a multidisciplinary committee on the basis of the above mentioned criteria. NWO announces which applications have been granted about four months after the deadline of this round.


You will find all of the documents that you need for your application here. Applications must be submitted through the application and reporting system ISAAC (Science, SSH, AES) or ProjectNet (ZonMw). If you do not have an ISAAC or ProjectNet 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.

  • Write proposal

    When writing your proposal, please bear in mind that each application will be assessed with the realm of the relevant discipline(s) by a multidisciplinary committee.

    Please use the application form that you can download from this page.

    Only the required annexes will be accepted.

  • Fill in forms

    Preparing an application


    • Download the application form;
    • Save the application form as pdf file and upload it in ISAAC (Science, SSH, AES) or ProjectNet (ZonMw).

    The application form consists of:


    • A research proposal written in English (max. 6 pages A4, 2,000 words. The word count includes footnotes, texts illustrations and tables, captions to illustrations and tables. References are excluded;
    • A narrative CV of the applicant consisting of a narrative academic profile (max. 3 pages A4) and the key output (max. 10 items);
    • Two recommendation forms;
    • One acceptance form of the intended host institute;
    • Applications from applicants who have not yet been awarded a PhD must also be accompanied by a form approving their thesis.

    All forms will be made available on the websites of NWO and ZonMw at least two months before the deadline of this call.

  • Do you already have an account in Isaac/ProjectNet?
  • Have you completed the application form and saved it as a pdf file?
  • Has the statement been signed by the main applicant?
  • Has the appropriate acceptance form been fully signed and added to your application?
  • Have the two recommendation forms been added to your application?
  • When applicable: has the manuscript acceptance form been added to your application?

Applications can be submitted to one of the four windows. Once submitted, you cannot change windows. In case of doubt please contact the program coordinator well before the deadline.


Submit to Science window

Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH)

Submit to SSH window

Applied and Engineering Sciences (AES)

Submit to AES window

Given the limited number of applications submitted to the AES domain, these applications will be assessed together with the applications submitted to the Science domain by a multidisciplinary committee. 

Health Research and Medical Sciences (ZonMw)

Submit to ZonMw window