The calls of the New National Excellence Programme (ÚNKP) were announced for the fourth time this year since 2016. The programme, which awards scholarships in several categories, aims to enhance the academic performance of universities by supporting students and research excellence. As of 2019, the operational coordination tasks of the ÚNKP programme are performed by the National Research, Development and Innovation Office, while the professional coordinator is the Ministry for Innovation and Technology.
Over 4400 applications were submitted to the calls for the academic year 2019/2020 with a total scholarship request of nearly HUF 5.5 billion. Formally admissible applications were assessed on the merits by the universities, and the overall success rate was 46%. Depending on the call category, the amount of net monthly grant ranges from HUF 50,000 to 300,000 disbursed to the awardees over 5 or 10 months, while the host institutions will receive 40% of the amount awarded to their beneficiaries for operating and research costs. In addition to four other sub-programmes, a separate call entitled ‘Power up your talent!’ was dedicated to first-year students, and the number of awardees in this category increased by 10% compared to last year.
The 5- or 10-month scholarships of the programme were available to undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students, doctoral candidates, young academics and researchers who engage in a successful research or artistic activity in one of the 25 participating higher education institutions. The ÚNKP programme also hit a record this year: 13% more scholarships were awarded for the 2019/2020 academic year than for the previous year. Altogether 6600 scholarships have been awarded in the programme since its launch in 2016.
Budapest, 29 August 2019