Frequently Asked Questions: Transformations to Sustainability Programme

What is a Transformative Knowledge Network?
These networks will include scientists from different social science disciplines, from the human, natural, engineering, and medical sciences as well as non-academic partners — decision-makers, practitioners, the private sector, civil society and activist groups. They will include partners from different countries and across different regions. They should demonstrate direct benefits to early career social scientists who obtained their PhD no more than ten years ago.

When will the call for Transformative Knowledge Networks be opened?
It is expected that the call will be published in mid-December 2014. If you wish to add your name to a mailing list to receive information on the Transformations Programme, please contact us.

Why was there a call for seed funding?
The seed funding was intended to help researchers to respond meaningfully to the call for Transformative Knowledge Network proposals by building necessary partnerships with colleagues in other disciplines and fields and other countries, to identify and establish contact with relevant stakeholders, and to engage them as knowledge partners in the co-design of proposals to develop Transformative Knowledge Networks.

Will the call for proposals for Transformative Knowledge Networks be restricted to recipients of the seed grants from the first call in 2014?

Who will be eligible to apply to the call for Transformative Knowledge Networks?
The lead applicant (Network Coordinator) must be a social scientist based in a low or middle-income country (including high-middle-income countries), according to the current World Bank classification.

Can there be more than one lead applicant?
Yes, the coordination of a TKN may be shared by a maximum of two social scientists, at least one of whom must be based in a low or middle-income country. One of the co-coordinators will take responsibility for submitting the application. The institution of one of the co-coordinators will be responsible for handling the grant, including redistribution of the grant to other main partners in the network.

Is it the nationality/citizenship of the coordinator or co-coordinator that is relevant for the eligibility criteria, or rather the location of the individual’s institutional base?
With reference to the requirement for the coordinator or co-coordinator to be from a low or middle-income country, it is the location of the individual’s institutional base that counts, rather than the individual’s nationality/citizenship.

Do all partners in the network need to create a profile in the online application system?
No, only the Coordinator who has taken responsibility for submitting the proposal. Other main partners (as identified by the applicant) receive an email asking them to click on a link to confirm their participation in the proposal.

Do all partners in the proposal need to submit a CV?

The Coordinator(s) and main partners in the network need to provide a two-page CV, to be uploaded as one document in the online submission system. ‘Main partners’ are key partners in the network, who may have some responsibility for coordination or implementation of part of the project.

What is the grant period?
It is expected that the funding period will run from October 2015 to September 2018.

How much funding is available?
A minimum of three successful applications will receive up to €900,000 each over three years.

When will the decision be made on the TKN proposals?
July 2015

How many countries should be represented in a Transformative Knowledge Network?
In order to achieve the programme’s aims of fostering transnational collaboration and comparative research and building research capacity, Transformative Knowledge Networks should conduct research in at least three countries (involving local/national researchers in each case), in at least two regions of the world and including at least one low- to middle-income country.

What counts as a low- or middle-income country?
Please see the World Bank classification of low- and middle- (including high-middle-) income countries.

Can the budget be presented in the currency of the applicant’s country?
The budget must be presented in Euros for the sake of comparison. It is recognised that there may be fluctuations in the exchange rate between the date of submission of the proposal and the date of eventual award.

Can funds be transferred into a personal account?
No. Funds must be received and administered by the institution employing (one of) the lead applicant(s). Funds can then be redistributed to the institutions of other partners in the network. All Transformative Knowledge Networks will be audited.

How do I apply for funding?
Read the call for proposals carefully once it has been published. A template for the application will be published at the same time.

An online submission form hosted on the website of the National Research Foundation of South Africa will be opened on 2 February. The link to the online form will also be provided on the Transformations to Sustainability site.

Who should I contact if I have further questions?
Questions on the content of the call can be addressed to the Transformations to Sustainability Programme Management Team at the email address below.