Procedure for restarting the operational process

18 May 2020

Slowly but surely, the operational process can be restarted again. Both the scientific field and the NWO office have more or less adjusted to the new situation, though things have not completely returned to normal yet. A number of researchers are unable to devote sufficient time to assessing research proposals due to care and teaching responsibilities. However, a large number of researchers actually have more time to devote to this task.

In addition to opening postponed calls, we also want to resume several of the rounds that were frozen. We believe it is important to give everyone the opportunity to write a proposal. This means we need to provide more time between the announcement and closure of a call, so that researchers with less time on their hands can manage to submit a proposal.


To give all researchers the space to use our instruments, we would like to pre-publish the funding instruments that are being kept open. We are opening them up for proposals, so that researchers who are in a position to do so can get to work. We will also publish calls that were only scheduled to be opened in the autumn as early as possible. By extending the period between publication and closure, we are creating space for all applicants to write proposals at a time that suits them best, including those who now have extra (care) responsibilities.

Frozen instruments

Rounds that were open when the social distancing measures went into force have been frozen. We would now like to resume a number of these rounds. To be able to subsequently close these rounds, they must meet the following conditions:

  • the round has to have been published for at least four months at the time of closing;
  • the final closing date must be communicated at least two months before closing;
  • the round is not complex, i.e. it does not require a consortium or co-funding.

Frozen complex instruments

A number of complex instruments have now been frozen as well. Because it is difficult to form consortiums in this situation, we would like to give applicants more time to do so. Frozen complex instruments may close under the following conditions:

  • the round has to have been published for at least six months;
  • the final closing date must be communicated two months before closing.

Frozen instruments with interview

NWO has now drawn up and tested a protocol for conducting online interviews with positive results. Instruments that are in the interview stage will be resumed as soon as possible, using this protocol. The programme coordinators will contact the applicants to schedule the interviews and explain the further procedure.

For the NWO Talent Programme Vidi, the interviews will take place physically if possible. More information: Funding instrument|NWO Talent Programme Vidi

Call timetable

NWO is in the process of drawing up a timetable for instruments for the rest of the year, taking the above starting points into account. The above deadlines for opening and communicating closure dates also apply to new calls planned for the rest of this year. We take the summer period into account as much as possible in our scheduling and, where possible, avoid setting deadlines for instruments with the same target group too close together. This timetable will be available in June.

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Source: NWO