Bilateral research cooperation China


The FWO is keen on promoting international collaboration as a driving force for excellence. That is why the FWO signs bilateral agreements with a number of countries for the funding of joint research projects. These projects go further than the traditional exchange and collaboration projects, because personnel can also be financed.

One of the selected countries is China. The FWO has reached an agreement with the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) on the funding of new research projects in strategic areas, which may vary per call.

For the 2016 programme the cooperation is limited to the following areas: science and technology, medical and biological sciences covering research in the following themes:

  • food, agronomy, and biotechnology
  • sustainable energy and environment
  • ICT and micro-electronics
  • health
  • remote sensing

Multidisciplinary research is being encouraged.


  • Joint research project with Chinese partner(s)
  • Period: 3 years
  • Personnel and consumables:  € 45.000 to € 130.000 with a reference amount of € 75.000
  • Additional equipment/matching funding:  maximum € 150.000
  • Call closed
  • Announcement of results: July-August 2016
  • Start of project: September 2016
  • Success rate 2012: 25%

Profile and conditions

  • The collaboration with Chinese partners will have an added value for your research.
  • As a team of researchers you need funding for consumables, equipment and personnel.
  • Your research will be carried out at universities in the Flemish Community or at officially registered higher education institutions that can award a PhD degree.
  • Your research project will be carried out under the direction of a supervisor, possibly in collaboration with one or more co-supervisors
  • All material acquired with a grant for consumables/equipment of the FWO shall become the property of the university.
  • The host institution is the employer of staff remunerated on research projects.
  • Supervisors and co-supervisors are not allowed any remuneration or accumulation with a remuneration on a research project.
  • Applications in the framework of this bilateral research cooperation with China do not count toward the calculation of the maximum number of projects per application round for which you may act as (co-)supervisor. In addition, supervisor-spokesmen, who were awarded a project, do not need to skip an application round before being able to submit an application.
  • Take a look at the different research projects you can apply for in 2016


  • Your joint application is submitted simultaneously at FWO (by using the online application form in the FWO e-portal) and at MOST, according to their respective modalities.
  • You propose a list of 10 external referees (eligibility criteria). Please be aware that the proposed international referees cannot be appointed to a Belgian university, research institute or other organization. Moreover, the proposed international referees cannot be appointed to similar institutions and organizations in China. Please note that there also cannot be a Conflict of Interest (CoI) with the Chinese partner(s).
  • Your application is presented to a number of these referees for evaluation.
  • An FWO jury will evaluate and rank all applications.
  • The final funding decision will be taken by FWO and MOST together in joint consultation.
  • The FWO Board of Trustees decides on your appointment.
  • You can ask for feedback on the decision.

Regulations and downloads