Q&A related to the Phase 1 applications 2019 (updated continuously). Questions have to be sent to DFC by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Separated below in the sections: Who can apply/Partners – Theme – Assessment – E-application – Budget/What can be covered.
Regarding the budget, please note that you do not need to make a detailed budget for the Phase 1 applications, as these are concept notes. Guiding principles for budgeting – Window 1 are available in the Calls 2019 – Research Grants under the section “Useful links”, https://dfcentre.com/research/calls-for-applications/
NB: Please note that it is not possible to make corrections to an e-application after it has been submitted, except for corrections related to the personal information.
Q: I am a Tanzanian researcher at a university in Tanzania working on issues related to one of the themes in Window 1. I have a keen interest to team up with Danish researchers and apply for the call. However, so far I don’t have no a contact from there to collaborate. Could you please let me have some of the email addresses of possible researchers from some universities from Denmark?
A: Danida Fellowship Centre cannot engage in establishing partnerships between institutions. You will therefore have to contact relevant Danish researchers directly. You may find inspiration in the “guide to finding a Danish researcher for applicants from Ghana and Tanzania” on our website under Useful links: https://dfcentre.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Guide-to-finding-a-Danish-researcher.pdf
Q: I am planning to register for Phd studies at a Tanzanian university on this academic year (2019/2020) My research proposal fit one of your research theme, therefore my question is, it possible that I can submit my application for the Phd funding?
A: As stated in the current Call 2019, Window 1, (http://dfcentre.com/research/calls-for-applications/) “Applications can only be submitted by universities or by a research-based institution (public and private, nationally registered institutions) in Denmark, Ghana, or Tanzania, which will be responsible for the grant. The project coordinator must have an affiliation to the applying institution.” This means that no single PhD students can apply, and Danida Fellowship Centre cannot engage in establishing partnerships between institutions and researchers. You will therefore have to contact relevant researchers directly.
Q: I am from a Research Institute in Colombia, and I have a question concerning the deadline, as I found some mixed information at your website. We are interested in presenting a proposal, but on the website it says that the Call for Window 2 is still open, but also that the Phase 2 2018 is closed.
A: The application round is two-phased, meaning that only pre-qualified applicants in phase 1 are invited to submit a full application in phase 2. The phase 2 of application round 2018 is closed (the link to the closed phase 2, 2018 is available for information only). The phase 1 of the application round 2019 is currently open, link https://dfcentre.com/research/calls-for-applications/. Please note that applications for research with partners in growth and transition countries (incl. Colombia) must be applied for by Danish research institutions (main applicant).
Q: With regards to the main applicant, is it just Denmark, Ghana, or Tanzania that have the possibility to submit and coordinate the proposed project?
A: As mentioned in the Call, Window 1: “Applications can only be submitted by universities or by a research-based institution (public and private, nationally registered institutions) in Denmark, Ghana, or Tanzania, which will be responsible for the grant. The project coordinator must be attached to that institution” and “The applications from Denmark must list partners in Danida priority countries and possible international and private sector partners, while the research project applications from Ghana and Tanzania must list partners in Denmark and possibly elsewhere”.
Q: Will an office of an international research organization (e.g. CGIAR) be regarded as a South-based in country partner (that can submit a full-scale budget) or as an international organization (that would be subcontracted, without OH). Furthermore, if it is the latter model of acting as international organization, what type of costs would typically be eligible?
A: The W1 applications can only be submitted by universities or by a research-based institution in Denmark, Ghana, or Tanzania, which will be responsible for the grant. The project coordinator must be attached to the applicant institution and the project coordinator and the Head of the Responsible Institution/Department must sign the application. Partners (co-applicants) in W1 applications applied from Denmark are research-based institutions in the Danida priority countries, and the proposed projects must aim at strengthening the research capacity of these institutions, which focus on national priorities and ownership. So, unless you can explain that the organization is registered as a national organization in the partner country, it must be regarded as an international project partner and can as such be included as subcontractor by any of the project partner institutions, and can be supported by the grant only for the direct services to the project activities. Only salaries and travel expenses concerning these direct services can be covered, and not administration fees.
Q: I would like to know whether apart from being the main applicant in one consortium, it is possible for us to be partners in another consortium?
A: There is nothing in the general conditions or the call text that prevents your institution from being part of several consortiums applying for projects with Danida Fellowship Centre at the same time.
Q1: I hold a PhD degree from a university in Denmark, working as R&D engineer in a private Danish association at the research and development department, and also as a Postdoc in a Danish university – Do I have the right to be the main applicant?
Q2: Should the association or the affiliation be used as the main applicant?
Q3: Assuming that one of my association/affiliation were used, is it still possible to include the other in the application?
A1: As you hold a PhD degree you formally apply with the conditions for main applicant. In the Call it is stated: At the time of submitting the application, the project coordinator must hold a PhD or equivalent qualification, documented clearly in the CV. Documented evidence that he/she is a Professor, Assistant Professor, or Associate Professor is regarded as equivalent to a PhD.
A2: In the Call it is stated: Applications can only be submitted by universities or by a research-based institution (public and private) in Denmark, which will be responsible for the grant. The project coordinator must have an affiliation to the applying institution. If the private Danish association is a research-based institution it can be the main applicant as well as the Danish university.
A3: As long as it does not involve a conflict of interest concerning your own affiliations, DFC cannot see a problem in including the other as partner. It is stated in the Call: It is strongly encouraged to involve partners from the private sector and national authorities in the partner country or in Denmark in the research project, and grant funding can be used for direct costs in relation to the project activities but not overhead expenses.
Q (W2): Is there a limitation or obligation regarding how many partners from “Transition country” and from “Denmark”?
A: No, but do consider management aspects and feasibility. Sub-contracting could be considered in case of partners providing direct input (more information will be provided in Phase 2 to the prequalified applicants).
Q: It is an obligation that any of the participants from the transition country must at least list 1 associated researcher, what about partners from private sector (e.g. consultant office) from the transition country? Shall they also have a researcher?
A: The Call states: At least one researcher from each partner institution (project participant if private sector partner) must be named in the Phase 1 application. So private sector participants are not necessarily researchers.
Q: Is it feasible that a private enterprise to be subcontracted by the main applicant besides also being a private partner?
A: In the Phase 1 application you should list private partners as partners even though you may decide to include such as sub-contractors (which more relies to the budget). Sub-contractors are also partners. No overhead/administration fee can be charged for the type of partners you list below.
Q: My question is: Are projects or another ideas different to subjects mentioned in the Call not encouraged to apply?
A: Unfortunately, only projects within eligible countries and research themes mentioned in the call are encouraged to apply.
Q: (W2) Regarding the specific theme “China-Sustainable urban development” do we need to cover all the three sub-themes, i.e. : i) sustainable urban development (including infrastructure development, waste management and green energy); ii) climate change adaptation and water management; and, iii) diabetes – or can we choose one of these?
A: Under this specific theme “China-Sustainable urban development” not all three sub-themes need to be covered. You may determine how many and which of the sub-themes are relevant to your research project application.
Q: (W2) I have a question regarding the country-specific theme related to South Africa, would our project have to work specifically in the City of Tshwane?
A:We can inform you that the text of the Call has to the interpreted literally. This means that a Call for application will have to include both cities, i.e. the City of Tshwane and the City of Aarhus.
Q: Who at the embassies assesses the relevance of the project idea proposals in Phase 1?
A: For Window 2 applications, the sector counsellors at the embassies assess the relevance. For Window 1, the embassies assign relevant staff to do the assessment.
Q: (W2) Could you to get feedback as to whether an idea of proposal may have any change to get funding
A: DFC can only give advice concerning the application procedures and more general matters related to the Call for applications. As you can read in the Call, the embassies are in involved in Phase 1 to assess the relevance of the proposals (project ideas). We would therefore suggest that you contact the relevant sector counsellor at the Danish Embassy in Mexico for advice. Kindly refer to the guide to sector counsellors under useful links to explore the roles and responsibilities of sector counsellors and what type of advice they can provide, link https://dfcentre.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Guide-to-sector-counsellors-Window-21.pdf
Q: What does the relevance related to the SDGs refer to?
A: It is the SDGs relevant to the project. It is the responsibility of the applicants to incorporate the relevant SDGs as well as the Danish National development priorities sufficiently in the application. It is relevant to incorporate specific SDGs, rather than merely “the SDGs”, especially as it also is important for the project proposal to demonstrate a certain degree of focus.
Q: What policy or strategic framework is relevant as reference document in the support to development research?
A: The World 2030: Denmark’s strategy for development cooperation and humanitarian action is the main reference document for the Danish priorities of development cooperation, incl. development research.
Q: What exactly are the outcomes that Danida Fellowship Center will be expecting as a final delivery of such project?
A: Outcomes vary depending on the projects. The granted projects are expected to deliver the outputs and outcomes approved in the granted Phase 2 proposals. You may refer to the General Conditions for on-going projects, link https://dfcentre.com/research/general-conditions-and-forms-for-research-projects-2/
Q: How do we handle the signature page?
A: Open the signature page in Step 5 – the names of project coordinator and head of institution inserted in Step 1 have automatically been filled in, print this document and let the mentioned persons sign it, scan the document and upload it in Step 4.
Q: There is a difference in the character count – text in a word document fills more in the electronic system, why?
A: In the e-application system some special characters, like %, /, or “, count for more than they are in spaces in a word document, some of them might take up space for 4-6 characters – therefore, the application system allows approx. 10% more characters than stated in a field to compensate for this, meaning that a max. of 10,000 characters would allow you to submit the application also with up to 11,000 characters, and here the red X and the green tick in the system are the important determining factors.
Q: In Window 2, what does “eligible for a subsequent funding phase on the basis of a competitive application round” mean?
A: It has not yet been determined how a possible application process for extension projects will be implemented, but competitive funds refer to funds applied for in competition, i.e. an application round.
Q: Is there any guideline as to what level salaries can be covered by a potential grant?
A: Salaries for staff must follow the appropriate tariffs applying to the local institution in question. It is not accepted that staff is paid allowances on top of the salaries already received from the institution. Salaries are either compensation/ replacement salary paid to the institution for the time the staff allocates to the project, or compensation payment for over time, either hourly or performance based. In the case of over time payment, a written agreement must be entered between the institution and the researcher. Double salaries and payment of consultancy fees will not be accepted.
Q: How are man months per researcher calculated – is it man months for working in the project or for working in the project inclusive of own contribution?
A: For the Phase 1 application, we just ask for an estimate of the total working time per researcher for the project, and more detailed information will be given to the successful applicants who proceed to the Phase 2 application.
Q: At what level do the partners need to contribute co-funding in a Window 2 application?
A: Concerning co-funding, the exact level of expected co-funding is not specified. It is stated in the Call under Project costs (also stated in the guiding principles):”It is expected that research institutions in partner countries will provide a monetary or in-kind contribution to the project (salaries, equipment or materials). The actual level of co-funding expected will be agreed during preparations for phase 2 applications. In a possible subsequent project after the pilot project, it would be expected that a substantial co-funding is provided from public or private partners. Co-funding from the Main Applicant is encouraged.
Q: (W2) A question regarding the budgeting – do we need to split the 5 mill DKK in any specific way between Denmark and partner country?
A: More information concerning the budget will be provided in the Phase 2 invitation and instructions to the pre-qualified applicants. It is indicated in the Window 2 Call that “Approximately the same level of researcher work time (in man months) on the project is expected between Danish researchers and researchers in the partner country”, but otherwise the current Call does not specify any specific way to split the budget between Denmark and the partner country.
Q: I notice that equipment is under the eligible cost, does that mean building a small demo or a test plant could be fully covered (of course under the applied budget)? Is it an obligation to have a test facility? Is it satisfactory to have only publications, reports and studies as outcomes from the project?
A: Refer to “Guiding principles for budget making in Phase 2” under useful links, – you may find useful information concerning eligible costs. Demo/test plants are included in some of the currently ongoing research projects and in others not -so it depends on the character of the projects.
Q: Could the grant be added to an existing/under developed industrial and/or commercial project that is having shortage in its budget?
A: No, as stated in the Call: It must be clear that the proposal constitutes a genuine research project rather than being a registration of data, commissioned research, a product development, demonstration project, technology transfer, consultancy, or development project.