As in previous years, the call for individual researchers and research teams will be launched with five sub-programmes. The Postdoctoral Excellence scheme supports early-stage researchers who have obtained a scientific degree within five years. The Young Researcher Excellence scheme helps individuals to start their own research topic and set up their own research team. More experienced researchers and their teams can request funding in a scheme that follows the 30-year-old traditions of the Thematic Research Projects scheme. The two other sub-programmes can again contribute to the implementation of projects planned in Hungarian-Austrian and Hungarian-Slovenian cooperation.
As Tamás Schanda explained: “The government is dedicated to put Hungary among the top innovators in Europe by 2030. Last year, Hungary spent more than ever before on research, development and innovation, with around HUF 771 billion. Last year we spent more than ever before, some HUF 771 billion on these knowledge areas. The amount provided from the state budget has essentially doubled since 2010. The OTKA budget is also increasing year by year, with two billion forints more funding available next year compared to last year’s HUF 11.5 billion. The ever-increasing budget is easy to spend, as Hungary has seen the largest increase in the number of people working in research and development since 2010 compared to other European countries.”
The system is becoming more and more responsive as the calls are continuously improved. In recent years, the administrative burden associated with the use of funds and cost accounting has been significantly reduced. In the new call for proposals, the share of funding that can be used for direct research has been increased. The postdoctoral system has been made more flexible by the introduction of part-time employment. High-quality publication is an important requirement for publicly funded projects to ensure that the research results become accessible to both the international scientific community and the general public. Winning researchers have to make their publications open access (OA). OTKA also provides separate funding per project to cover these costs.
For more details on the calls, visit the NRDI Office’s website. The deadline for submissions could be next February or March, depending on the sub-programme. The announcement of the results is expected in summer 2022, and the winning projects will be launched from September, according to the ITM’s communication.