Call opens for research and education that strengthens Sjuhärad

Between 28 September and 12 October, it will be possible to apply for grants for projects in 2021 in the fields of research and education. Applications are to be made through the Sparbanksstiftelsen Sjuhärad's website.

In total, the foundation receives between 300 and 500 applications each year, of which about one third are applications for research projects. About 100 grants are awarded each year, says Emelie Johansson, coordinator at Sparbanksstiftelsen Sjuhärad.

"When researchers ask how much they can apply for, I usually advise them to look at previously granted projects, but there is no real limit. Instead of looking at the sum, we look at what the project is about and aims to accomplish, that it will develop Sjuhärad.”

What could be good to think about?

"The website contains good information about our priorities, specifically for research. It is important to be clear in your application, as those who assess the applications are not experts in the field of research. If you write in English, which some do, you must also submit a summary in Swedish. That’s always good, so there won't be any misunderstanding.”

Niina Hernández is a Senior Lecturer and researcher, with the focus on garment fit, analyzed with help of mathematical formulas as well as virtual and real garments. Last year, she received a grant from Sparbanksstiftelsen Sjuhärad and TEKO to purchase equipment to measure and digitise the mechanical properties of fabric. When Niina Hernández wrote her application, she placed great emphasis on describing the need within society and how the equipment would be used. She described the university's previous investments in digital tools as well as the actual need to develop the research area further.

"One thing I clearly stated was how the equipment could also be used by students, from undergraduate to the doctoral level. I worked to include people and concepts from different textile areas in the application. I think it is a strength to show that the use of the equipment will be wide," says Niina Hernández.

Do you have any more tips for researchers looking for funding for the first time?

"I think you will benefit from being quite clear in regards to how the business community and Sjuhärad are advantaged by your research.  It may be a good idea to show what you have achieved so far, that thing you are seeking funding for is part of a more long-term work – or at least the beginning of a long-term venture. Also keep in mind that your readers are not experts. It cannot be assumed that trade expressions are widely known. At the same time, if the application were to be seen by someone who knows the area, it must not sound too basic. That’s an important skill, to be able to communicate with both experts and laypeople.”