Grants and Funding


Grants and funding come from different sources – national and international – and are often linked to a specific use such as individual grants or collective projects’ funding. Finding the correct funding opportunities can sometimes be difficult and time-consuming. This page provides information that should help and guide researchers in finding the right financing instrument (just here below) up to submitting a proposal.

Funding Opportunities

Career Funding

Career-funding instruments are designed to support individual researchers at different levels of their professional trajectory (PhD, postdoc, faculty). They consist in mobility and project grants that allow researchers to further their academic career by strengthening their research curriculum and building networks. This table shows major career-funding instruments classified by funding agencies and career stages.

Project Funding (individual and collective)

Project funding is designed to allow researchers to conduct research on specific issues individually or collectively. Project grants allow principal investigators to form teams of doctoral and postdoctoral researchers and to engage in cooperative research with universities or research institutions at the national or international level. This table shows major project-funding instruments classified by funding agencies.

Conference, Workshop and Related Funding

Conference- and workshop-funding allow researchers to discuss new ideas and scientific advancements with fellow experts and to present their findings in academic or public settings. This table lists funding instruments for organising conference and workshops.


How to Submit an Application

A simple institutional procedure is in place to ensure that the administration and the researcher, working as a team, avoid any mistakes. It also allows for a quicker and smoother process.

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To submit a new proposal, each researcher must log into Converis and enter the information regarding the proposal into the Applications’ module. This will enable the Research Office and Accounting Services to follow the submission during its process and offer support. Ideally, entering this information into Converis should take place at least seven days before the submission deadline.

The aim of this process is to support the researcher – not to prevent any proposal submission.

Please note that this procedure does not replace the submission procedures and formats of any other funding institutions such as the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) or the European Union (EU). Many funding institutions require electronic submission through their own portals/websites. You will need to create a username and a password to access these sites. Therefore, plan ahead.

Electronic submission:

  • Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF): submission is done online through the web platform MySNF.
  • European Union – Horizon 2020: submission is done online through the Participant Portal.

How to Write a Successful Grant Proposal

This section provides documents that should help you when you are about to write a grant proposal. Access to those documents is restricted to the members of the Graduate Institute’s community, i.e. you must first log in via the “Login” or “Se connecter” button at the bottom of this page.

This presentation (first log in) contains useful tips on how to write a convincing application; in addition, you will find below scientific proposals of successful grant applications to various funding instrument which their authors have been kind enough to share with the Graduate Institute’s research community. They can serve as examples and sources of inspiration for writing your own successful application.

Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) – Project Proposals
German Research Foundation – Project Proposal


Resources and Additional Information

  • APSIA – Visit the Fellowships and Scholaships database of the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs (APSIA)
  • Euresearch – Get support and training to apply for a ERC or a Marie Sklodowska Curie funding scheme thanks to Euresearch, a Swiss network mandated by the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) that provides targeted information, hands-on advice and transnational partnering related to European research and innovation programmes.
  • European Research Council – Writing a successful ERC Starting Grant proposal
  • General information on EU-funding and support services.
  • German funding lanscape – An article presenting a broad outline of the German funding lanscape as well as funding opportunities that may be of interest to the Graduate Institute’s research community.
  • Horizon 2020: new work programme 2018–2020 – An article on the biggest EU research and innovation funding programme ever, with many topics of interest to the Institute’s research community
  • Online tool of the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) – Find your funding tool thanks to this selection guide put in place by the SNSF to help researchers identify the best funding scheme to their career stage and/or project.
  • Open Society Foundations's  grants, scholarships, and fellowships – Awarded throughout the year to organisations and individuals who share Open Society values, have a vision and whose efforts will lead to lasting social change.
  • RESEARCHconnect – Browse this huge, continuously updated database of funding opportunities, now open to the Graduate Institute researchers, faculty and students.
  • SwissCore – Swiss information and liaison office for European research, innovation and education in Brussels.
  • US funding landscape and opportunities – An article presenting a broad outline of US federal funders, state funders, industry, foundations and university endowments, as well as funding opportunities that may be of interest to the Graduate Institute’s research community.


Support and Contact

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The Research Office offers a one-stop information desk supporting researchers at the Graduate Institute that seek third party funding. Our mission is to facilitate research applications by

  • providing information on external funding and keeping abreast of developments;
  • offering advice on which funding agency or instrument is most relevant to your project and career stage;
  • supporting researchers formulating funding proposals by offering input on formal requirements and budgets;
  • revising your research plans and any additional documents required for the project submission;
  • receiving all research proposals leaving the Institute and checking for compliance with the institution’s policies.

Contact: Ghislaine Wharton, Research Coordinator, +41 22 908 43 20.