Guidelines for Eka, Encouragement, and Research Grant applicants

Three to five experts from the Scholarship Committee review each application. Experts score the applications based on their views, but due to the large volume of applications, they use jointly agreed assessment criteria. The goal is for each application, regardless of whether they are for Eka, Encouragement or Research Grants, to be reviewed as equally as possible. Applications receiving mixed reviews are reviewed in detail during scholarship committee meetings and via email where necessary.

The following exclusion criteria apply:

  • For non-Eka Grants the applicant must have at least one peer-reviewed, PubMed indexed piece of original research published or in press. Applications failing to meet this will not be processed. Abstracts should not be included in the list of publications. Unclear cases will be checked against databases.
  • Incomplete application.
  • Applicant is not a doctor of medicine or dentistry or medical or dental student.
  • Application is for postdoctoral work abroad – these will be funded through the Postdoc Pool.

General assessment criteria

In general, the application receives an average grade when all formal criteria are met (every requested section has been filled out) and the applicant has at least one approved publication (does not apply to Eka Grant applications). In recent years, reaching the average level has not been enough to receive funding.

+ Additional points are awarded for:

  • Innovative research, important research subject or a research field lacking in information
  • Project is heading toward completion (thesis within 1 to 2 years is a realistic goal)
  • Application that has been excellently completed content-wise (see end)
  • Most important findings have been clearly presented and offer significant new information
  • Research field or method is particularly challenging, but has still been completed as planned
  • Research field has clinical importance

– Points are docked for:

  • An incomplete application (some are excluded immediately)
  • Incoherent application
  • Summary does not provide a clear picture of research project
  • Research does not produce notable new information
  • Research plan

The research plan is critical for the review.  A good research plan includes among other things the following:

  • Summary
  • Background
  • Goals
  • Research questions & setting
  • Execution & methods
  • Applicant’s personal role in research (important!)
  • Current stage of research
  • Research schedule
  • Cost estimate and plan
  • Ethical matters

Typos and careless mistakes and poor Finnish or English create an impression of a plan that’s hastily written and not necessarily well thought out. Early career researchers are encouraged to have their supervisor inspect the research plan before submitting it.