Many of you researchers are busy with your proposals to different Swedish funding agencies. Writing successful proposals comes with experience. Nevertheless, there are mistakes that are easy to avoid and one's learning process could be more or less bumpy. Here are my 10 tips for junior scientists and scholars:

  1. Find a mentor to discuss your ideas and plans for funding. Sometimes you should aim for a smaller project to conduct a pilot study before you go for research councils and other major funding agencies.
  2. Look who got funded before. Many agencies publish earlier funded project, and many times, the abstracts are also available.
  3. Write your proposal for a call that is suited to your topic, type of project (e.g. applied vs basic research), career age, etc.
  4. Make sure you start in time. Ask a couple of people to be your reviewer, and make sure you don't ask for last minute feedback.
  5. Read and follow the instructions carefully.
  6. Have ambition, but be realistic. Have clear goals, and make sure they are clearly expressed in the application.
  7. Match your methods with the goals of your project.
  8. Please remember that the Head of department must approve your plans for funding.
  9. Make a realistic budget and involve the administrative staff at your department.
  10. Use a clear language. Allocate time for proofreading. Simple mistakes in spelling and grammar annoy reviewers.

Don't forget that even the best ideas get rejected - don't give up, be persistent and follow your curiosity and dreams!

 Maryam Hansson Edalat
Head of Research Support Office