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The 2016 HFSP Research Grants

The 2016 HFSP Research Grants support discovery life sciences research

Human Frontier Science Program

The International Human Frontier Science Program Organization (HFSPO) is awarding about 34 million USD to the 32 winning teams of the 2016 competition for the HFSP Research Grants. Applicants went through a rigorous year-long selection process in a global competition that started with 871 submitted letters of intent involving scientists in 64 different countries around the world. This year 7 Young Investigator Grants (involving 22 scientists) and 25 Program Grants (involving 78 scientists) were awarded. Each team member receives on average 110,000 - 125,000 USD per year for three years.

HFSP collaborative Research Grants are given for a broad range of projects under the umbrella theme of "Complex mechanisms of living organisms". Particular emphasis is placed on cutting-edge, risky projects. While there are bilateral or regional agreements for international collaboration, the HFSP grant program is unique because it is the only international program that encourages bottom-up applications from teams involving scientists worldwide.

HFSP Research Grants appeal to the innovative and creative potential of the applicants and in the current round the breadth of research projects awarded ranges from neuroscience to cell biology to synthetic biology. Warwick Anderson, HFSPO Secretary General, comments that as "the only international, globally operating funding organization for basic discovery life sciences research, HFSP helps to shape the future by building a network of trust and collaboration among scientists. We build our own research on the foundation of accuracy and reliability of our previous work." He adds that it will be "ultimately the public, companies and professionals who use our results to innovate and build, to make policy, to teach, treat patients and much more."

A strong preference is given to intercontinental collaborations. The awardees' laboratories are located in 20 different countries, including 53 laboratories in Europe, 32 in N. America, and 11 in the Asia-Pacific region as well as laboratories in the non-member countries Israel and Panama.

HFSP aims to involve younger scientists in international collaborations. Therefore principal applicants for Program Grants are encouraged to include younger scientists as co-investigators in their teams. The mean age for Program Grant awardees is 46.6 years, whereas Young Investigator Grant awardees average at 39.8 years.

Full lists of the 2016 HFSP awards are available at


The Human Frontier Science Program is an international program of research support implemented by the International Human Frontier Science Program Organization (HFSPO) based in Strasbourg, France. Its aims are to promote intercontinental collaboration and training in cutting-edge, interdisciplinary research focused on the life sciences. HFSPO receives financial support from the governments or research councils of Australia, Canada, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, Switzerland, UK, USA, as well as from the European Union.

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