STSM Call 2014

COST Action TU 1301 OPEN CALL FOR Short Term Scientific Missions (STSM)

(NORM4BUILDING)

Applicants Guide

 This applicant’s guide should be read in conjunction with COST Vademecum Part 1: COST Action

Deadline for application:   09 Jul 2014, at 5 pm CET

1. Terms used in this guide:  

35 member states: Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom, Former  Yugoslav  Republic of Macedonia;  and one cooperating state: Israel.COST Countries: All COST Member States and Cooperating States

Memorandum of Understanding:(MoU) means the agreement accepted by a minimum of five different COST Member Countries and/or Cooperating State describing the Action objectives and the added value of networking. This document has to be endorsed by any additional COST Member Country or Cooperating State joining the Action.

Researcheris anyone engaged in the conception or creation of new knowledge, products, processes, methods and systems in the project concerned. For the purpose of participating in COST Actions, any individual, independently of their institutional affiliation shall be considered as a researcher.

Early Stage Researcher(ESR) is a researcher in the start phase of his/her career with at least the PhD and up to 8 years of experience after the PhD.

Participating COST Countriesrefer to COST Countries or Cooperating State which have accepted the Action’s MoU.

Committee of Senior Officials (CSO)is the main decision-making body of the COST structure. The CSO is composed of two representatives of the COST Member States, one of whom is usually the COST National Coordinator.

COST Near Neighbors Countries (NNC) are countries approved by the CSO to benefit from dedicated support for the integration of their researchers in COST activities.

NNC approved institutionis an institution located in a NNC whose participation to an Action has been approved in accordance with the relevant COST rules.

Specific Organizationsrefer to the European Commission, other EU Institutions and EU Agencies, European RTD Organizations and International Organizations.

Approved Specific Organizationsrefers to a Specific Organization whose participation to an Action has been approved in accordance with the relevant COST rules.

International Partners Countries (IPC) means all those countries that are neither COST Member Countries, nor Cooperating State nor COST NNC.

IPC approved institutionis an institution located in an IPC whose participation to an Action has been approved in accordance with the relevant COST rules.

Action Participantsmean any researcher who participates actively in a COST Action (MC Members, Working Group members etc.); this can include researchers from Near Neighbour and International Partner Countries as well as other Specific Organizations, i.e. the European Commission, EU Agencies, etc.

 2.The Aim of Short Term Scientific Missions (STSM)

Short Term Scientific Missions (STSM) are aimed at supporting individual mobility and at strengthening the existing networks and fostering collaborations by allowing scientists to visit an institution or laboratory in another Participating COST Country or an approved COST Near Neighbour Country (NNC) institution or an approved COST International Partner Country (IPC) institution. A STSM should specifically contribute to the scientific objectives of the COST Action, while at the same time allowing applicants to learn new techniques or gain access to specific instruments and/or methods not available in their own institutions.

 3. Who can be STSM applicant?

STSM applicants must be engaged in a research program as a postgraduate student or postdoctoral fellow, or be employed by or officially affiliated to an institution or legal entity. This institution is considered as the Home institution. Institutions may be public or private entities.

Possible STSM scenarios are

Home Institution Host Institution
From Participating COST Country or Cooperation State – To another Participating COST Country or Cooperative State-          To an approved NNC institution- To an approved Specific organization
From an approved NNC institution To a Participating COST Country or Cooperation State
From an approved European RTD Organization To a Participating COST Country or Cooperation State

4. Duration of the STSMs

Standard STSMs need to take place according to the following rules:

  1. Be a minimum duration of 5 days
  2. Be a maximum duration of 90 days
  3. Needs to be carried out in their entirety within a single grant period (i.e. STSMs  funded under this call must end before 31 September 2014) and within the Action’s lifetime

ESR may extend the duration of the STSM beyond the 90 days; in this case, ESR STSM must take place according to the following rules:

  1. Be a minimum duration of 91 days
  2. Be a maximum duration of 180 days
  3. Needs to be carried out within their entirety within a single grant period and within the Action’s lifetime

5. Financial support

A STSM grant is a fixed contribution based on the budget requested by the applicant and the evaluation of the application by the STSM Committee. The aim of this grant is to support the costs associated with the exchange visit. This grant will not necessarily cover all expenses; it is intended only as a contribution to the travel and subsistence costs of the participant.

The calculation of this contribution for a STSM must be based on the following rules:

  • The reimbursement rate per day is EUR 160 maximum
  • Up to EUR 500 may be attributed for the travel expenses
  • A maximum EUR 2 500 in total can be afforded to the grantee

The calculation of this contribution for an ESR STSM (for duration of more than 91 days) must be based on the following rules:

  • The reimbursement rate per day is EUR 160 maximum
  • Up to EUR 500 may be attributed for the travel expenses
  • A maximum EUR 3 500 in total can be afforded to the grantee

In all cases the Management Committee (MC) can approve differentiated country rates for subsistence per day, based on the cost of living in each respective country.

The aforementioned rules are prescribed in the Cost vademecum in the frame of the COST Action TU1301 the expected number of STSMs to be approved in 2014 is 5.

 6. Application Process, Assessment and Reporting

Before the STSM

In order to receive a STSM grant, the applicant must:

  1. Obtain the written agreement of the host institution before submitting an application
  2. Complete the online application form (see https://e-services.cost.eu/stsm)
  3. Send the completed file as e-mail attachment to the STSM host institution and to the Chair of Action TU1301 (wouter.schroeyers@uhasselt.be) and STSM Coordinator (emilijaf@tmf.ukim.edu.mk) together with the following supporting documents:
  • Motivation letter (maximum 1 page)
  • STSM Proposal (see Annex I)
  • CV
  • List of publications
  • Letter of support from the home institution
  • Letter of support from the host institution

Assessment

The STSM Committee of the TU1301 Action, comprising the STSM Coordinator, the Action Chair, the Action Vice-Chair and the leader of the beneficiary Working groups will perform the scientific and budgetary assessment of the applications considering the Action TU1301 objectives and define an acceptable funding level.

Each STSM proposal will be assessed according to the criteria listed in the table below.

Assessment  criteria Description Points
Applicant CV Estimate the ability of applicant to realize  the proposed STSM(Early stage researchers start from a minimum of 5 points for this criteria) 15
Applicant publication Publications related to the working plan proposal(Early stage researchers start from a minimum of 10 points for this criteria.) 15
Working plan proposal
  1. Clear justification of activities which should be realized during the STSM.
  2. How are the activities in connection to COST action TU 1301 and priorities defined in MoU?
  3. Dissemination of outcomes from STSM
30
Detailed Plan of activities Diagrammed activities (Gantt chart) for the whole  duration of STSM 10
COST action benefits Clear definition of the COST action TU 1301 benefits from the proposed STSM 15
Applicant personal benefits Expected  personal benefits from the proposed STSM 15

Once approved from the STSM Committee, the Grand Holder will notify the applicant.

After the STSM

The grantee is required to submit a short scientific report to the host institution and the MC chair (for information) and to the STSM coordinator for approval within 30 days after the end date of the STSM containing:

  • Purpose of the STSM;
  • Description of the work carried out during the STSM;
  • Description of the main results obtained;
  • Future collaboration with the host institution (if applicable);
  • Foreseen publications/articles resulting from the STSM (if applicable);
  • Confirmation by the host institution of the successful execution of the STSM;
  • Other comments (if any).

The failure to submit the scientific report within 30 days will effectively cancel the grant;

The STSM coordinator is responsible for approving the scientific report and informing the Grant Holder that the STSM has been successfully accomplished;

After receipt of the approval by email, the Grant Holder will execute the payment of the grant.

 7. Annex I – Instructions for drafting a STSM Proposal

The maximum length of the STSM proposal should be 5 pages (without  the first title page and the second page consisting the contents of the proposal).

The font size should be 12 pt with single line spacing and the page size should be A4 with margins 25 mm (without headers and footers).

The main part of the proposal should include the following:

  1. Working plan proposal (maximum three pages)

This section should include:

  • Aims
  •  Background
  • Summary of the work to be carried out by the applicant in the host institution
  • Foreseen results
  • Dissemination of the results
  1. Detailed Plan of Activities (maximum one page) This should include diagrammatic working plan activities (Gantt chart) for the full duration of the STSM.
  1. COST action TU 1301 benefits (maximum ½ page)
  1. Applicant personal benefits (maximum ½ page)

Note:

*Incomplete proposals are not eligible and will not be evaluated.