International cooperation

Independent Research Fund Denmark participates in a number of research networks at Nordic, European and global level.

The aim is to strengthen and further develop the internationalisation of Danish research and thus ensure that the best Danish researchers and research groups get an opportunity to coordinate and develop their research cooperation across national borders.

Nordic research cooperation

The most important Nordic research forums for Independent Research  Fund Denmark are the Joint Committees for Nordic Research and NordForsk.

The national research funding agencies of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Sweden and Norway collaborate in joint committees for research in the fields of humanities and social sciences (NOS-HS), medicine (NOS-M) and natural sciences (NOS-N). The aim is to enhance and stimulate Nordic research cooperation, e.g. through coordinating activities among the Nordic research councils and financing joint Nordic research projects.

NordForsk is an organisation under the Nordic Council of Ministers which provides funding for Nordic research cooperation as well as advice and input on Nordic research policy.

European research cooperation

Independent Research Fund Denmark supports the ambition of establishment of a common European research area where European researchers cooperate across took active part in the establishment of Science Europe with its primary task to influence research policy in Europe and EU in particular.

Science Europe is an association of European research funding organisations and research performing organisations, based in Brussels. Science Europe promotes the collective interests of the research funding and performing organisations of Europe and supports member organisations in their efforts to foster European research.

The Fund is also a member of the European Science Foundation which is a confederation of research councils and similar organisations in Europe working to promote free, independent research. ESF is a forum for change of knowledge information and discussions regarding science. The Fund’s membership has given Danish researchers access to the many activities launched by the Foundation.

Mobilex - mobility programme

The programme is named MOBILEX and is launched with financial support from the 7th Framework Programme for Research of the EU.

MOBILEX mobility grants are supporting interest-driven, researcher-initiated research projects. The programme offers 26 mobility grants annually in each of the years 2013-2015. The 26 annual grants are divided into 15 outgoing and 11 incoming mobility grants. MOBILEX outgoing grants cover projects initiated by researchers in Denmark who wish to conduct a research project at a research institution outside Denmark. 

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Global research cooperation

Independent Research Fund Denmark seeks to further cooperation of Danish research with strong research environments in growth markets in and outside Europe. Especially through bilateral agreements. Examples of this are the cooperation with the National Science Foundation (NSF) in the US and the establishment of innovation centres in growth markets. Moreover, the Fund has actively participated in the establishment of the Global Research Council.

Independent Research Fund Denmark and NSF both wish to increase the international mobility of Danish and American postdocs. As such, the  research council and Fund have agreed to inform postdocs of the possibility to seek grants for a research stay in Denmark and the US respectively.

GROW research programme – Graduate Research Opportunities Worldwide

In 2015 Independent Research Fund Denmark (IRFD) entered into an agreement with National Science Foundation (NSF) concerning the research programme Graduate Research Opportunities Worldwide (GROW). The GROW programme acts as a supplementary grant for NSF’s research education programme Graduate Research Fellowship Program, which leads to a research based master’s degree or PhD. The NSF covers social sciences, natural and life sciences, and engineering.

Researchers who have been awarded Sapere Aude: DFF-Starting Grant, Sapere Aude: DFF-Advanced Grant or DFF-Research project 1, 2 or 3 grants, may obtain supplementary funding from IRFD to host a master’s or PhD research fellow for a short-term duration of 2-12 months. The research fellow must be attached to the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program. The supplementary grant must contribute to the research fellow’s participation in international research collaboration as well as to internationalisation of Danish research.

IRFD’s involvement in Global Research Council

At global level the fund is active within the framework of Global Research Council (GRC). Global Research Council is a cooperation organisation for research funding agencies from around the world. The organisation is dedicated to promote sharing of experience and development of standards and best practices among funding agencies worldwide. Danish participation in GRC’s yearly meetings rotates between Danish National Research Foundation and Independent Research Fund Denmark. Vice Chair Jan Philip Solovej participates in the meetings on behalf of the fund.


Innovation Centres Denmark

The Ministry of Higher Education and Science has established a number of Innovation centres in international research environments and growth markets. The task of the innovation centres is to locally support access for Danish companies and research institutions to foreign knowledge, network, technology, capital and markets. Independent Research Fund Denmark supports these initiatives and wishes to contribute to the establishment of new innovation centres where it is estimated to be beneficial for Danish research.