CRDS Call for Proposals

I Background

Ministry of Science of Montenegro (MoS) in partnership with the Ministry of Education (MoE), and supported by the World Bank loan, implement the Higher Education and Research for Innovation and Competitiveness Project (HERIC) to harness the potential of Montenegro’s human capital through relevant investments in higher education and research, as well as in the context of sustainable and expansive economic development. The project goal is to provide the large-scale leverages needed to transform higher education and research into mainstream economic drivers for Montenegro. These efforts will support Montenegro to better connections with EU in the areas of science and research and enterprise and industrial policy.

Advancing towards this goal, Ministry of Science will focus on following:

•    Accelerating and stimulating linkages between higher education institutions, R&D centres and firms at national and international level;
•    Promoting accessibility of scientists; 
•    Modernizing laboratory equipment for the needs of high quality scientific and applied R&D; and
•    Stimulating technology commercialization and patenting activities. 

In the framework of the HERIC project, through the Project Component 3 ("Establishing a Competitive Research Environment"), MoS will support researchers working in Montenegrin universities, research institutes, independent research bodies or firms that are licensed scientific research institutions from the Register of MoS to initiate an R&D subproject together with other partners – companies (from Montenegro or abroad) and international scientific research institutions which should be recognised by a comparable registration process in their own country.
Montenegro expects to increase its competitiveness with regard to technological innovation, intensify spending on research and development (R&D) and stimulate new knowledge.

II Scope of Call for Proposals

Montenegrin licensed scientific research institutions (universities, research institutes, independent research bodies, or firms), from the Register of the Ministry of Science, are invited to apply for Collaborative Research and Development Subprojects (CRDS) grants by submitting subprojects proposals aiming to integrate scientific and professional potential in Montenegro in order to contribute to development of the knowledge-based society. In particular, the applicants are encouraged to propose subprojects which have the following goals:

•    To nurture international collaboration, generate commercial innovations and strengthen the Montenegrin economy. 
The CRDS Grants Programme encourages applied and developmental scientific research creating potential to be competitive on international level. Projects are expected to attract researchers, experts and investments into Montenegro, enabling the cooperation at European and international level.
•    To encourage cooperation between domestic and international institutions, as well as with business sector, strengthening the Montenegrin economy.
The CRDS Grants Programme supports projects that directly or indirectly strengthen the Montenegrin economy. The development of innovations, patents, commercial and other scientific results will be financed. 
•    To try-out quality and sustainable partnerships that show potentials to integrate research into mainstream economic drivers for Montenegro and to grow into the future centres of excellence.
The CRDS Grants Programme supports research that will be competitive at the international level and supports education and scientific excellence in order to make Montenegro a desirable place for top scientists from abroad (including those from Diaspora).
 
III Application Process

1.    Who can apply – Eligibility criteria:

Applications/proposals have to be submitted by a national licensed scientific research institution (universities, research institutes, independent research bodies, or companies) from the Register in the Ministry of Science. Applicant has to submit proposal in partnership with at least one international scientific partner and one partner from industry. Another national licensed scientific research institution that will contribute to the interdisciplinarity of the proposed project is highly recommended as a partner, although not obligatory. Maximum number of partners is not limited. Applicant has to provide a written guarantee of the contribution of the Lead Applicant and all involved partners. 
Submitted proposal has to be applied or development research project, within the following priority research areas: Energy; ICT; Medicine and Health; Sustainable Development and Tourism; Agriculture and Food; and New Materials, Products and Services. 
Proposal shall contain an appointed Project leader, who will be responsible for the implementation of the project. Project leader has to be a person full time employed at the institution applying for CRDS grant. Applicant/Project leader that has not fulfilled contractual obligations from previous scientific projects, funded from the national budget in the last five years are not allowed to participate in this Call.

2.    Subprojects Duration and Funding

The duration of a subproject is maximum three years. The requested CRDS grant allocation has to be between €150,000.00 and €400,000.00.

3.    Application process

Project proposals are to be submitted in a CRDS Grants Application Format, which includes a Confirmation Letter of each participant, confirming each participant’s commitment to actively participate in the project and to provide its own contribution (in-kind, in-cash or both, depending on the type of partners). Along with it, applicants have to fill in and submit an Environmental Screening Checklist.
All eligible proposals will be evaluated by international reviewers in a two stage process on the basis of specified criteria. Entities whose proposals are short-listed will be invited to negotiate and to provide additional modifications to their proposal if needed, on the basis of comments by the international evaluators.

4.    Eligibility of individuals 

Project leader and key researchers must fulfil criteria defined in the Rulebook of the Ministry of Science.
The Project leader must have the total coefficients greater than 25 for the last ten years depending on the expertise of his or her scientific field (special focus will be on the achievements in the last five years).
A Key researcher must have the sum of the coefficients above 15 in the past ten years depending on the expertise of his or her scientific field (special focus will be on the achievements in the last five years).

5.    Criteria for evaluating project proposals:
•    Scientific/technological quality, expected results, innovativeness and interdisciplinarity;
•    International cooperation, mobility of researchers;
•    Cooperation with business sector;
•    Quality of young researchers involvement;
•    Quality of the project plan: technical, managerial as well as cost and financing structure;
•    Quality of the project team: scientific/technological and managerial; and
•    Valorisation of results and market perspectives.

Gender equality:

The Government of Montenegro is committed to gender equality. Applications are particularly encouraged from partnership seeking to appoint woman to senior research positions within the CRDS.

Submission of proposals:

Proposals should be submitted in three (3) hard copies and in electronic form on three (3) CDs. The application material (both hard copies and CDs) shall contain: annexes 3a, 3b, 3c, 3d; Environmental Screening Checklist; project abstract in Montenegrin language; Gantt chart; all scientific research institutions included in project shall provide licenses/certificates/declarations stating their scientific research character; all companies included in the project shall confirm their status and size by providing documents from Central register of the business entities and other relevant institutions. All documents on CDs shall be provided in PDF format, while annex 3a shall be additionally provided also in Word format, and annex 3d in Excel format.

All application material shall be submitted in English language. In addition, the short summary (maximum 3 pages) should be separately submitted in Montenegrin language. The licenses from scientific research institutions shall be submitted either in Montenegrin or in English language (licenses obtained in other languages shall be translated into one of those two languages and certified by an authorized translator).

Submission deadline: December 17th, 2013;
Application material can be delivered in person at the address mentioned below (from 9:00 to 17:00 h, Monday to Friday), or sent by post. 

Guidelines for Applicants and all necessary details (requirements, procedures, application forms etc.) are available on the websites of the Ministry of Science (http://www.mna.gov.me) and HERIC project (www.heric.me).

The application material should be submitted on the following address:

    Ministarstvo finansija Crne Gore (Ministry of Finance of Montenegro)
    Technical Services Unit
    Jovana Tomasevica bb
    81000 Podgorica
    Crna Gora (Montenegro)

    For the attention of: Mr Zoran Mijovic
    (e-mail: zoran.mijovic@mif.gov.me)
    (Tel: +382 20 201 697)
(Fax: +382 20 201 698)

Subject Line: Name of the Applicant – CRDS Grants 2013 

Proposals submitted by e-mail will not be considered. 

For further details please contact:

Mr Vladan Perazic
HERIC Project Grants Officer
Rimski trg 19;  81000 Podgorica;  Montenegro
Tel: +382 20 23 45 77
Fax: +382 20 22 15 77
vladan.perazic@mna.gov.me