1st Call of 2018 for Basic research proposals in the field of Natural Sciences and Engineering

Within framework of basic research funding program in the fields of natural sciences and engineering, National Foundation for Science and Technology Development (NAFOSTED) would like to announce the first call for proposals of 2018.

1. Funding objective:

– To create favorable research environment in order to promote basic research activities at scientific and technological organizations in Vietnam.
– To enhance research capabilities and develop robust research communities in order to enrich Vietnamese science and technology workforce.
– To improve research quality towards international standards.
– To promote international cooperation and integration in scientific researches.

2. Funding areas
Basic research proposals in the following fields are eligible to be considered for NAFOSTED grants:
– Natural sciences: Mathematics, Information and computer sciences, Physics, Chemistry, Earth and Environmental sciences, Biology, and other natural sciences;
– Engineering and Technology;
– Pharmacy and medical sciences;
– Agricultural sciences.

3. Eligible grantees

– Vietnam’s scientific and technological organizations; foreign organizations that are capable of conducting scientific research and currently operating in Vietnam; foreign organizations that are collaborating with Vietnam’s scientific and technological organizations in joint research.
– Individual Vietnamese-citizen scientists; foreign scientists that are collaborate with Vietnam’s scientific and technological organizations or with individual Vietnamese scientists.

4. Eligibilities for host organizations, participating researchers and requirements on research outcomes

4.1 Eligibilities for host organizations:

a) Must be a registered scientific and technological organization with research areas matches the project being proposed;

b) Fulfill all responsibilities of a host organization for the project awarded by NAFOSTED grants.

4.2 Eligibilities for Principal Investigator:

a) Possess relevant research expertise to the project being proposed and are employed by a registered Scientific and Technology organization. If the principal investigator is not currently employed by any Scientific and Technological organization, he/she must be supported by a reputable Vietnam’s scientific and technological organization that agrees to be the host institution;

b) Possess research abilities and skills that match the requirements of the project being proposed, including: holding PhD degree or associate professor/professor title, and having relevant research results published on prestigious international journals (*) within 05 years, calculated backwards as from the submission deadline;

c) Commit sufficient time to complete the research being proposed as per regulations. In case the PI is overseas for business trip, his/her time abroad must not exceed 1/3 of the total project conduction time;

d) Abide by conditions for PI registration and participation as per regulations.

4.3 Project member/researchers must obtain proper and technical competencies and skills for their proposed research, including:

a) Key researcher(s) and scientific secretary: achieved PhD degree or associate professor/professor title and having relevant research outcomes published on prestigious international or national journal within 05 years, calculated backwards from the submission deadline.

If member are master-degree holders, they must have relevant research outcome(s), including at least 01 articles published in prestigious international journals or 02 articles published in reputable national journals (***) within 05 years, calculated backwards from the submission deadline.

b) PhD students participating in the proposed project must be working on relevant dissertations and acquire dissertation-approval decision within the last 24 months, calculated backwards from the submission deadline.

c) Technicians and other support staff.

4.4 Requirements for the research outcomes

– Research outcomes include at least 02 articles published on prestigious international journals and 01 article published on prestigious national journal.

– PI must be the first author of at least 01 article published on prestigious international journals which is one of the research outcomes.

Any publication(s) issued on journals belonging to the prestigious ISI list (**) is considered equivalent to 02 publications issued on other prestigious international journals;

Every year, NAFOSTED announces a portfolio of reputable ISI journals, prestigious international journals and prestigious national journals as a basis for checking eligibility of proposal (refer to the latest portfolio of reputable ISI journals, prestigious international journals issued by NAFOSTED). And NAFOSTED also announces the list of acknowledged outcomes of the funded proposals (refer to the latest list of prestige journal issued by NAFOSTED for the published research outcomes).

(*): Prestigious international journals (Natural sciences and engineering fields) in 2016 are scientific journals selected from groups Q1, Q2 and Q3 of SCI (Science Citation Index) and SCIE (Science Citation Index Expanded) which are listed at the JCR (Journal Citation Reports) by the International Institute for Scientific Information (USA).

(**): Prestigious ISI journals (Natural sciences and engineering fields) in 2016 are scientific journals selected from groups Q1, Q2 and Q3 of SCI (Science Citation Index) and SCIE (Science Citation Index Expanded) which are listed at the JCR (Journal Citation Reports) by the International Institute for Scientific Information (USA).

(***) Prestigious national journals are approved by NAFOSTED Board of Trustees in consideration of NAFOSTED Scientific Committees’ recommendations.

Detailed regulations can be found in Circular No. 37/2014/TT-BKHCN dated on 12th December 2014 by the Ministry of Sciences and Technology governing the administration of basic research funding program of National Foundation for Science and Technology Development (https://www.nafosted.gov.vn/vi/archives/view/37242014TT-BKCN-26/)

The portfolio of prestigious ISI Journals, the prestigious International Journals and the prestigious National Journals in 2016 can be found here.

5. Timeline
Proposals submission: From November 10, 2017 to 5:00pm December 22, 2017
Eligibility check: October 2017
Merit review and evaluation: January – March 2018
Announcement of the grantees list: April 2018
Refinement of proposals and contracts signing: May – June 2018

6. Application (including electronic and printed proposals)

Electronic proposals must be prepared on OMS by filling standard forms including:

  • Basic Research Registration Form (in English and Vietnamese)
  • Project Proposal (in English and Vietnamese, download here)
  • Scientific CV of PI and other members (in English and Vietnamese)
  • Evidences of research achievements (including at least 01 article done by PI and published on a prestigious international journal in the last 5 years

Printed proposals (01 set in Vietnamese and 01 set in English) comprise:
Basic Research Registration Form printed from OMS  approved by the host institution or supporting organization

  • Project Proposal approved by Head of host institution or supporting organization
  • Scientific CV of PI and each member (in English and Vietnamese) printed from OMSand approved by Head of host institution or supporting organization (unless the project members are employed in host organization).
  • Evidences of research achievements of PI and decision(s) of accepting PhD student (1 copy).

In addition, project leader must print 02 proposal checklists to recheck and use as submission confirmation.

Notice:
Electronic proposals shall be used for merit review and evaluation.
International experts shall evaluate the English version of electronic proposals.
Any proposal is different from its OMS version shall be refused by NAFOSTED.
Please read Guide on how to use OMS properly.

7. Proposal submission
NAFOSTED Administration Office (Room 405)
4th Floor, No 39, Tran Hung Dao street, Hoan Kiem district, Hanoi

8. Applicable legal documents
– Circular No. 37/2014/TT-BKHCN dated on 12th December 2014 by the Ministry of Science and Technology governing the administration of basic research funding program of National Foundation for Science and Technology Development (https://www.nafosted.gov.vn/vi/archives/view/37242014TT-BKCN-26/)
– Decision No. 31/QĐ-HDQL-NAFOSTED dated on 30th March 2016 by NAFOSTED Management Board approving prestigious ISI journal list and the list of prestigious international journal in natural sciences and engineering (https://www.nafosted.gov.vn/vi/archives/view/31QD-HDQL-NAFOSTED-31/)
– Decision No. 73/QD-HĐQL-NAFOSTED dated on19th May 2016 by NAFOSTED Management Board approving the list of prestigious national journal in natural sciences and engineering
(https://www.nafosted.gov.vn/vi/archives/view/73QD-HDQL-NAFOSTED-33/)
– List of NAFOSTED basic research orientations in natural sciences, promulgated along with Decision No. 04/QD-HĐQLQ dated on 24th December 2010 by NAFOSTED Management Board (https://www.nafosted.gov.vn/vi/archives/view/04QD-HDQL-6/)
– Joint Circular No. 55/2015/TTLT-BTC-BKHCN  dated on 22rd April 2015 by Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Science and Technology guiding norms for constructing and allocating cost estimates and settlement for scientific projects using state budget.
(https://www.nafosted.gov.vn/vi/archives/view/552015TTLT-BTC-BKHCN-28/)
– Joint Circular No. 27/2015/TTLT-BKHCN-BTC dated on 30th December 2015 by Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Science and Technology regulating funding allocation for conducting scientific projects using state budget in accordance with Decree No. 95/2014/ND-CP governing the investment and financial administration of science and technology activities.
(https://www.nafosted.gov.vn/vi/archives/view/272015TTLT-BKHCN-BTC-32/)
– Joint Circular No. 01/2010/TT-BTC dated on 6th January 2010 by Ministry of Finance governing the allowances for welcoming and receiving foreign delegation into Vietnam, and for organizing international workshops/conferences in Vietnam.
(https://www.nafosted.gov.vn/vi/archives/view/012010TT-BTC-12/)
– Circular No. 40/2017/TT-BTC dated on 28th April 2017 regulating travel expenses, conference organization by state agencies and public non-trading agencies.
(https://www.nafosted.gov.vn/vi/archives/view/402017TT-BTC-37/)

9. Guidelines on preparing proposal budget

9.1. NAFOSTED provides guidelines on how to apply Joint circular No. 55/2015/TTLT-BTC-BKHCN of 22rd April 2015 of Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Science and Technology guiding norms for constructing and allocating cost estimates and settlement for scientific projects using state budget as below:
9.1.1.      Labor costs: Are calculated on workday basis of each member and converted to month unit. A workday is equal to 8 working hours; or more than 4 working hours per day. A working month is equivalent to 22 workdays.
9.1.2.      Labor costs for hiring domestic and foreign experts to work on a project: Is not generally applicable under basic research.
9.1.3.    Fixed asset purchase and repair costs: Previously, NAFOSTED only funds for small and necessary research devices that are directly used for project activities. During merit review and evaluation, NAFOSTED prioritizes the host organizations that fully meet requirements on physical facilities and equipment to proceed their proposed research.  Any subcontracts for purchasing equipment must comply with regulations specified in Joint Circular No. 16/2015/BKHCN-BTC dated on 1st December 2015 by Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Science and Technology governing the administration and use of assets supported by State grants. Equipment purchase is possible only if there are no substitute hiring/renting services available, or due to inefficient asset maneuver.
9.1.4. Sending delegations abroad: Is not generally applicable under basic research. If there is an urge need for sending delegations abroad, the research team must prepare a separate proposal and submit to “NAFOSTED support program for national science and technology competency enhancement” in accordance with Circular No. 09/2015/TT/BKHCN dated on 15th May 2015 by Ministry of Science and Technology.

9.2. Applying Joint circular No. 27/2015/TTLT-BKHCN-BTC dated on 30th December 2015 by Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Science and Technology regulating funding allocation for conducting scientific projects using state budget in accordance with Decree No. 95/2014/ND-CP governing the investment and financial administration for science and technology activities as below:
– PI should demonstrate their intentions for applying partly or full administrative expense allocation in Project Registration Form (Form NCCB 01 and NCCB 01E).
– NAFOSTED shall consider the accounting framework of full administrative expense allocation if a proposal meets the following conditions:
(1) Host organizations, PI explain and propose to apply full administrative expense allocation for their proposals;
(2) Total budget withdrew from State budget used for repairing, and purchasing fixed assets and sending delegations abroad shall not occupy more than 15% of total state budget for the whole project and shall not exceed VND 1 billion.
(3) NAFOSTED Scientific Committee(s) approves that the project(s) can apply full administrative expense allocation after merit review and evaluation;

10. Strong research team registration

Not only the basic research gets funded, NAFOSTED also grants for research topics proposed by Strong research team. The regulations of Strong research team are shown in detail in Circular No. 37/2014 / TT-BKHCN as follows:

10.1. Requirements for Strong research team

A strong research team must firstly meet requirements for PI (specified in Section 4 of this Notice) and then go along with the following conditions:

a) PI has published on the prestigious ISI journals within 5 years up to submission time; has capable of gathering highly qualified scientists to cary out the project; maintain regular scientific research cooperation with international research groups of the same branch or interdisciplinary;

b / Having at least 02 key research members who meet requirements of PI;

c / The host organization has sufficient conditions on material and technical facilities, research capability and committed support during the study.

10.2. Requirements for outcomes conducted by Strong research team

The research project must have at least two papers published in the prestigious ISI journals and one article published in prestigious national journals.

The time and cost of implementing the research project proposed by PI should be based on the research content and workload of the project.

11. Notices

  • PI of basic research projects that are currently being funded by NAFOTED but about to submit project closeout files prior to December 22, 2017 are eligible to apply for the 1st Call of 2018.
  • A host or supporting organization is a registered scientific and technological organization with independent legal standing, legal seal and its own No. 3713 account at Vietnam State Treasury.
  • It is required to prepare proposals in compliance with NAFOSTED regulations. Any proposal lacks requisite information or fails to comply with standard forms shall be refused for review.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

+100%- 🖶 In