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Funders and Funding Schemes

Many national and international research funders can provide financing for your research project.

National Funding

The Netherlands has several national organizations that fund research. The largest Dutch funding schemes are:


The publicly-funded Dutch Research Council (NWO)  provides funding, facilitates collaboration between researchers and institutions, and promotes research excellence across various fields: from natural sciences to social sciences and humanities.

NWO funds curiosity-driven research through their Talent Programme. These individual grant are available by career stage: Veni, Vidi and Vici.

  • Veni, for researchers who have recently obtained their PhD (within the last three years). Veni factsheet. All Veni info.
  • Vidi, for researchers with several years of research experience (applicants should have completed their PhD three to eight years ago). Vidi factsheet. All Vidi info.
  • Vici, for senior researchers who have already demonstrated their own line of research (applicants should have completed their PhD more than eight years ago). Vici factsheet. All Vici info.

NWO provides thematically free research through their Open Competition line. All Open Competition info. These grants vary in size and are available across the domains of NWO; Social Science & HumanitiesScience (ENW) & Applied and Exact Science (TTW)

The Dutch Research Agenda  (NWA) provides funding for research into societally-relevant topics. Types of funding available under this initiative are:

The Knowledge and Innovation Covenant (KIC)  stimulates economic growth through research. All KIC info. It started when ministries, leading Dutch business sectors and the knowledge sector worked together to identify key topics of interest, which was developed into a programme on Top Sectors. KIC funding programmes, run by the NWO, are:

  • Mission: Thematic programmes of between 5-11 million based on high-priority, economically-relevant topics.
  • Demand: Funding for consortia with public and private partners.
  • Strategy: Large-scale, long-term consortia to develop the scientific field in the Netherlands

Other National Funders

The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) finances specific topics and established scientists.

As a University, we also do research directly with several Dutch government ministries. Please contact your local grant advisor if you would like more information on these Tenders.

Horizon Europe

With Horizon Europe, the European Commission (EC) aims to increase Europe's competitiveness by stimulating science and innovation. In addition, the EC wants to challenge industry and academia to work together to solve societal issues across Europe.

The fundamental activity of the ERC, via its main frontier research grants, is to provide attractive, long-term funding to support excellent investigators and their research teams to pursue groundbreaking, high-risk/high-gain research.

  • Starting grant - Researchers of any nationality with 2-7 years of experience since completion of their PhD. Principal Investigators must demonstrate the groundbreaking nature, ambition, and feasibility of their research proposal. ERC StG factsheet. ERC StG all info.
  • Consolidator Grant - Researchers of any nationality with 7-12 years of experience since completion of their PhD. Principal Investigators must demonstrate the groundbreaking nature, ambition, and feasibility of their research proposal. ERc CoG factsheet. ERC CoG all info.
  • Advanced Grant - Established research leaders of any nationality with a significant track record of research achievements in the last 10 years. ERC AdG factsheet. ERC AdG all info
  • Synergy Grant - Support for a small group of two to four Principal Investigators to jointly address ambitious research problems that could not be addressed by the individual Principal Investigators and their teams working alone (interdisciplinary). ERC SyG factsheet. ERC SyG all info.
  • Proof of Concept - The ERC Proof of Concept Grants aim at facilitating exploration of the commercial and social innovation potential of ERC-funded research. Therefore they are only available to Principal Investigators whose proposals draw substantially on their ERC funded research. ERC PoC factsheet. ERC PoC all info.

The Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) fund excellent research and innovation and equip researchers at all stages of their career with new knowledge and skills, through mobility across borders and exposure to different sectors and disciplines.

  • Postdoctoral Fellowships – These aim to support researchers’ careers and foster excellence in research. For researchers with a PhD who wish to carry out their research activities abroad, acquire new skills and develop their careers. MSCA PF all info.
  • Doctoral Networks – These aim to implement doctoral programmes by partnerships of organisations from different sectors across Europe and beyond. The purpose is to train highly skilled doctoral candidates, stimulate their creativity, enhance their innovation capacities and boost their long-term employability. MSCA DN factsheet. MSCA DN all info.

Promotes collaborative projects and is organized around the the following interdisciplinary, cross-sectoral, cross-policy and cross-border clusters:


Leiden University does research in an international setting with many foreign funders. Please have a look at our registrations page to see which funders we currently work with. For questions regarding working with funders from particular countries, please contact your local grant advisor.

Leiden University funding

  • Leiden Universit Fund (LUF) aims to help Leiden University to thrive. LUF provides multiple funding opportunities for Leiden University scholars and students. These are both individual and collaborative in nature and aimed at various career phases.
  • Kiem, Groei and Bloei are three funding tools that will take interdisciplinary research and teaching at Leiden University to another level.
  • Una Europa is a European University Alliance of eleven universities. Una Europa offers funding opportunities for exchange in different ways

Smaller Funds

Many Foundations provide funds for specific types of research and projects, such as NIAS, Humbolt Foundation, Volkswagen Foundation, Fulbright Center, AXA-research fund, etc. Please contact your local grant advisor for more information on these schemes.

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