Call for Proposals FAPESP – BMBF

A collaboration between the Federal Ministry of Education and Research of Germany (BMBF) and the Sao Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP)

Call for proposals for joint research collaboration under the Scientific Cooperation Agreement between Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo – FAPESP and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research of Germany – BMBF. The agreement can be found at: (Portuguese) and (English).

1. Introduction

2. Purpose

3. Research topics

4. Funding principles and project duration

5. Proposal characteristics

6. Submission of proposals

7. Assessment criteria, evaluation and selection

8. Timeline

9. Contact

1. Introduction

FAPESP and BMBF hereby invite researchers from universities, research institutions and industry in the State of Sao Paulo, Brazil and Germany who conduct research within the bioeconomy area, to apply for funding for joint Sao Paulo-German strategic research projects according to the current call.

The proposals must be prepared jointly by Sao Paulo and German researchers. In the State of São Paulo, Brazil, eligible applicants are researchers who comply with the Thematic Research Awards or Innovative Research in Small Businesses (PIPE) eligibility criteria. In Germany, the call is open for any German proposers who comply with those criteria listed in the German “Bekanntmachung Bioökonomie International 2015” of BMBF.

The project proposal must be written jointly by Brazilian and German researchers and must reflect unison and close cooperation. It is expected that research activities of importance to the expected outcome are being conducted on both sides and that the project volume and the intellectual contribution is evenly balanced between Sao Paulo and German researchers.

2. Purpose

For both regions, it is of major importance to provide solutions within the field of bioeconomy in order to accommodate to the challenges related to Sustainable Agriculture, Food Production and Conversion/Processing of sustainably produced non-food biomass to bio-based products. The aim of this call is that the funded projects deliver considerable and tangible results at the end of the project period.

This call defines the terms and conditions for the submission of joint proposals. FAPESP and BMBF will jointly support as many scientifically sound research projects with an application-oriented approach as possible under this call.

This call is announced simultaneously by FAPESP and BMBF at:



3. Research topics

Biological resources and processes must be used systematically in order to secure the global food supply, produce healthy and safe foodstuffs, make agricultural production more sustainable and promote the use of renewable resources in industry and energy generation. Using biotechnological methods and focusing on improved biological production systems in industry are also becoming increasingly important. Companies are introducing sustainable processes and products in order to remain competitive. However, we must keep up our efforts to ensure global food security while moving towards a bio-based economy. It is becoming evident in many countries that agricultural biomass production will have to face the increasing problem of competing uses, ranging from feeding the population to industrial extraction of raw materials to the production of biofuels.

Realizing the bioeconomy as a bio-based economic system requires more than merely national initiatives. International cooperation is needed. This is the purpose of the FAPESP-BMBF Call for Proposals.

The aim of this program is to fund high quality research and development projects of German partners and partners from the state of São Paulo in order to strengthen existing and establish new international partnerships/collaborations in one of the following fields of research.

This call invites joint research proposals within the following research topics:

1. Sustainable agriculture;

2. Food production: food processing and packaging, focusing on sustainable (energy saving and waste reducing) processes and materials;

3. Conversion/Processing of sustainably produced, non-food biomass to bio-based products.

4. Funding principles and project duration

Requested funding may cover research and travel expenses (for example, research training, equipment, travel costs, living allowances and insurance costs) according to each institution’s guidelines.

FAPESP and BMBF expect that the costs in each proposal will reflect the research effort carried on by each side. It should also be considered that differences on allocated values may reflect differences in costs covered and local prices.

The requested budget to each funder must follow the norms of BMBF and FAPESP and their respective Programs.

Please note that in Brazil, investigator and staff salaries are covered by research institutions. Hence, the proposals submitted to FAPESP must list all project costs, including the proportion of the salaries calculated according to the time exclusively dedicated to the project. Such corresponding salaries must be clearly stated in the budget forms submitted to FAPESP, in the appropriate fields.

The duration of the proposed research projects in this call for proposals may be up to 36 (thirty-six) months.

5. Proposal characteristics

All documents submitted to both FAPESP and BMBF must be written in English. The full proposal must be submitted to both BMBF and FAPESP. The content of the research proposal submitted to BMBF and FAPESP must be identical. Deviations are only accepted when related to specific institutional requirements from either FAPESP or BMBF (these are available locally, please refer to the respective institutional websites, according to sections 2 and 6 of this call).

The proposal, submitted in English to both BMBF and FAPESP, must contain:

A. A summary of the Principal Investigators’ CV (both the German and the Brazilian Principal Investigators) with a maximum of two pages.

B. A detailed budget worksheet for FAPESP and another for BMBF (according to each funder’s institutional requirements).

The proposal submitted to BMBF must have:

a) The detailed budget request worksheets required by BMBF; and

b) A summary of the budget requested by the partner in São Paulo from FAPESP.

Likewise, the proposal submitted to FAPESP must have:

c) The detailed budget request worksheets required by FAPESP; and

d) A summary of the budget required by the partner in Germany from BMBF.

C. A project description with a maximum of ten pages of scientific content, including the following items (deviations from the template are not accepted):

1. Summary of the research project to which the proposal is related, if applicable, including current and expected results.

2. Description of the added value and synergy of the collaboration.

3. List of each researcher and institution involved on both sides.

4. Description of the expected project goals and planned utilization of results. Details of the activities foreseen in the collaboration, including justification, relevance and impact.

6. Description of the infrastructure and other financial resources available to the research project.

7. Additional activities to the collaboration, i.e. seminars, short courses and visits to other research institutions.

8. The timeline of the entire project (work plan incl. milestones).

9. Possible actions to promote future participation in multinational projects.

10. Policy relevance of the proposed project with reference to relevant national/international programs.

6. Submission of proposals

Proposals must be submitted simultaneously to FAPESP (in paper form) and to BMBF (by electronic form) following the guidelines below:

For the submission in Germany the provided templates have to be used (download at and the proposals have to be submitted via the online submission system ( Submission via email is not allowed.

For proposers in the State of São Paulo, Brazil, proposals must be submitted by:

a) Researchers associated to a small business (less than 250 employees) established in the State of Sao Paulo. Proposals submitted to FAPESP must follow the rules of FAPESP’s Program for Innovative Research in Small Businesses (PIPE), as available at (available only in Portuguese), except if explicitly indicated in this CFP, including the specific Submission Form to this CFP, available at

b) Researchers associated to Research institutions in the State of Sao Paulo. Proposals submitted to FAPESP must follow the rules of FAPESP’s Thematic Project Awards, as available at (in Portuguese), except if explicitly indicated in this CFP, including the specific Submission Form to this CFP, available at

All proposals are to be sent to FAPESP in hard copy (paper form) at the following address: Rua Pio XI, 1500, Alto da Lapa, 05468-901 – São Paulo/SP, with “Chamada FAPESP-BMBF” written on the envelope and posted no later than the closing date.

The specific FAPESP forms for submitting proposals to this Call can be downloaded at

No proposal will be accepted after the closing date for submission, nor will any addendum or explanation be accepted unless those explicitly and formally requested by FAPESP or BMBF. Proposals submitted by any other means other than the online submission in Germany and hard copy (paper form) in the State of São Paulo will not be accepted.

7. Assessment criteria, evaluation and selection

FAPESP and BMBF will select the proposals according to their respective institutional procedures and assessment criteria.

As additional bilateral assessment criteria emphasis will be put on the following:

  • The potential impact of the research for respective national programs (for Germany: "National Research Strategy BioEconomy 2030" and the “Federal Government's Internationalization Strategy”);
  • Quality and originality of the of the research approach;
  • Added value for each country and synergies achieved through the joint cooperative research project
  • Excellence and expertise of the applicant and the partners involved (German and São Paulo);
  • Prospects of success and applicability of the project results (in scientific and economic terms);
  • Adequate volume and structure of the project, quality and stringency of budget as well as time and work schedule, balance of workload and networking of partners.

The applicants are encouraged to provide a thorough description of the mentioned bilateral aspects.

Only proposals selected and prioritized by both sides will be funded jointly. The final selection is to be decided by a joint committee with representatives from both FAPESP and BMBF.

8. Timeline

Launch of the call


Deadline for submission of proposals


Internal pre-screen

26/06/2015 – 10/07/2015

External evaluation (peer review by German and Brazilian experts)

10/07/2015 – 31/08/2015

Review of reports and preparation of the selection meeting

01/09/2015 – 14/09/2015

Selection Meeting

End of September 2015

9. Contact

All questions related to this call must be directed to:


Mr. Diego Muñoz
Technical Advisor
Scientific Directorate - FAPESP


Dr. Tatiana Gründer / Dr. Jens Schiffers
Project Management Jülich Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH
Biological Innovation & Economy - EU and International Affairs (PtJ-BIO7)
Tel.: +49 2461/61 - 96432 / -3972
Fax: +49 2461/61- 1790