Promotion of Research Funding

Funding Programs

Here you will find information about major funding agencies and programs that support research and innovation in Switzerland. An overview is also available on the website of the State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation.

You can find a database of networks und calls in the area of transnational research and development on the support platform ERA-LEARN 2020.

Active and Assisted Living Joint Programme (2014-2020)

AAL aims to enhance the quality of life of older people by supporting applied research on innovative ICT-enhanced services. The program is funded by AAL Member States and the EU. AAL is the successor to the Ambient Assisted Living Joint Programme (2008-2013).

Swiss participation: yes (Partner State)
Swiss funding: yes (national)

AAL website / Innosuisse website on AAL

Guidelines for Swiss partners (21.02.2020) (PDF, 438KB)

Clean Sky 2 (2014-2024)

Clean Sky 2 aims to develop break-through technologies for the civil aviation market in order to cut aircraft emissions and noise, and to increase transport efficiency. The program is a Joint Technology Initiative between the EU, companies (incl. SMEs), universities and public laboratories. Clean Sky 2 is the successor to Clean Sky (2008-2013).

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

Clean Sky website

SERI factsheet (12.09.2016) (PDF, 100KB)

Copernicus (1998- )

Copernicus is the European Earth Observation and Monitoring Programme, a partnership between the EU, the European Space Agency and the European Environment Agency. Copernicus publishes calls to further develop the monitoring system. Its previous name was Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES).

Swiss participation: depends on call
Swiss funding: depends on call

Copernicus website / Copernicus factsheets

COST – European Cooperation in Science and Technology (1971- )

COST aims to bundle nationally funded research projects into pan-European networks (COST Actions) across all science and technology fields. It generally does not fund research but provides support for the networking activities within the COST Actions. The Swiss COST Coordinator (SNSF) has limited funds available for research.

Swiss participation: yes (depending on the COST Action)
Swiss funding: yes (limited)

COST websiteSNF website on COST

Electronic Components and Systems for European Leadership (2014-2024)

ECSEL is a Joint Technology Initiative between the EU and three associations in the areas of micro- and nanoelectronics, smart integrated systems, and embedded/cyber-physical systems. The program aims to boost Europe’s electronics manufacturing capabilities. ECSEL is a merger of ARTEMIS (embedded systems), ENIAC (nanoelectronics) and EPoSS (smart systems).

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

ECSEL website / Innosuisse website on ECSEL

Guidelines for Swiss partners (12.06.2019) (PDF, 348KB)

EUREKA (1995- )

EUREKA, an intergovernmental network involving over 40 countries, aims to enhance European competitiveness by fostering innovation-driven entrepreneurship between small and large industry, research institutes and universities. EUREKA endorses various thematic networks and clusters with the EUREKA label, and funds the Eurostars program.

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes (Eurostars only)

EUREKA website / Innosuisse website on EUREKA

Guidelines for Swiss partners (15.01.2019) (PDF, 354KB)

European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership 2 (2014-2023)

EDCTP2 funds research into the prevention and treatment of poverty-related infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria in sub-Saharan Africa. The aim is to accelerate the clinical development of new or improved interventions. The programme is a partnership between countries in Europe and sub-Saharan Africa and the EU. EDCTP2 is the successor to EDCTP (2003-2013).

Swiss participation: yes (Aspirant Member)
Swiss funding: yes

EDCTP website

Fuel Cells and Hydrogen 2 (2014-2024)

FCH2 aims to accelerate the market introduction of fuel cell and hydrogen energy technologies in order to achieve a carbon-lean energy system. The program is a Joint Technology Initiative between the EU, industry (NEW-IG) and the research community (N.ERGHY). FCH2 is the successor to Fuel Cells and Hydrogen (2008-2013).

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

FCH website

SERI factsheet (02.09.2014) (PDF, 43KB)

Horizon 2020 (2014-2020)

H2020 aims to ensure Europe produces world-class science, removes barriers to innovation and makes it easier for the public and private sectors to work together. Focusing on excellent science, industrial leadership and tackling societal challenges, it is the biggest EU Research and Innovation Programme to date. H2020 is the successor to the 7th Framework Programme (FP7; 2007-2014).

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

More information

Human Frontier Science Program (1989-)

The goal of the HFSP is to support frontier research on the complex mechanisms of living organisms. The program, financed by the HFSP member countries and the EU, supports research projects and research fellowships. Particular emphasis is placed on interdisciplinary and high-risk projects.

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

HFSP website / SBFI website on HFSP

Innovative Medicines Initiative 2 (2014-2024)

IMI 2 aims to develop better vaccines, medicines and treatments, and more reliable and faster clinical trials. It is a Joint Technology Initiative between the EU and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations. IMI 2 is the successor to IMI (2008-2013).

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

IMI website

SERI factsheet (02.09.2014) (PDF, 44KB)

Innosuisse – Swiss Innovation Agency

Innosuisse promotes cooperation between academic research and industry through innovation projects, networking, training and coaching. It thereby lays the groundwork for successful Swiss start-ups, products and services. Projects are funded by the federal government and participating companies. Innosuisse replaced the Commission for Technology and Innovation (CTI, 1996-2017).

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

More information

Federal Government Research (2017-2020)

The federal government initiates and supports scientific research that deals with societal problems in 11 policy areas: health, social security, environment, agriculture, energy, sustainable spatial development and mobility, development and cooperation, security and peace policy, vocational training, sport and exercise, and sustainable transport. Some federal offices also fund research in other areas.

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

Federal government research website (in German)

SERI factsheet (18.06.2019) (PDF, 393KB)

Swiss National Science Foundation

The SNSF is the most important funding organization in Switzerland and supports scientific research in all areas. There are a wide range of project and career funding instruments on offer. The SNSF receives its mandate from the Swiss government.

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

More information

Swiss Personalized Health Network (2017-2020)

The SPHN promotes the development of personalized medicine and personalized health in Switzerland. It is an initiative of the Swiss Academy of Medical Sciences and is financed by the Swiss government as well as with matching funds from the participating institutions.

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

SPHN website

SPHN factsheet (2019) (PDF, 5.9 MB)

TRANSFORM – Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation

TRANSFORM promotes applied, need-based research conducted by consortia of researchers and implementation partners, with the aim to find innovative solutions for sustainable development in low and middle-income countries in the Global South and East. TRANSFORM replaces the Swiss Programme for Research on Global Issues for Development (r4d programme, 2012-2022).

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

TRANSFORM website

US Department of Defense – Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs

The CDMRP fosters novel approaches in biomedical research that will lead to new treatment methods, improvements in patient care, or breakthrough technologies and resources of clinical benefit. It funds basic research as well as clinical projects on a range of topics of relevance to the health of US army personnel, veterans and the general public.

Swiss participation: yes
Swiss funding: yes

More information

US National Institutes of Health

The NIH is a US government agency that supports research into the nature and behavior of living systems, in order to enhance health, lengthen life, and reduce illness and disability. It is the major source of funding in the USA for biomedical and health-related research.

Swiss participation: limited
Swiss funding: yes

More information

US National Science Foundation

The NSF is a US government agency that supports basic research in all the non-medical fields of science and engineering. It is the major source of funding in the USA for fields such as mathematics, computer science, economics and the social sciences.

Swiss participation: limited
Swiss funding: yes

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