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Since its creation in 1999, the Fonds National de la Recherche (FNR - National Research Fund) has become a key actor in building a high-quality research system in Luxembourg. The FNR provides funding for all branches of science and the humanities with an emphasis on strategically aligned research domains.
Beyond its traditional role of funding agency, the FNR develops various thematic and strategic instruments that help to construct Luxembourg’s profile as an international research site, notably by attracting excellent researchers from abroad, by fostering international collaborations, by promoting collaborations with the private sector, by promoting the industrial exploitation of research results and by supporting the training of researchers at PhD and postdoctoral levels. Furthermore the FNR is actively promoting scientific culture and interest in research.
Within all its activities, the FNR encourages research projects that relate to Luxembourg's socio-economic challenges and welcomes public-private partnerships involving Luxembourg's key-players in R&D.
A Performance Contract, concluded with the Ministry of Higher Education and Research, sets the budgetary frame for the well-defined short- and long-term objectives.
With its current funding activities for public research, the FNR pursues a three-fold strategic objective:
- supporting researchers to build up scientific quality and excellence;
- improving Luxembourg’s research environment and institutional framework;
- promoting scientific culture, particularly among the young (Science in Society).
Since 2000, the FNR has thus implemented
- various thematic and structural Research Programmes, through which research projects in priority areas for Luxembourg are financed,
- the AFR (Aides à la formation-recherche) Grant Scheme (the former BFR grants of the Ministry of Research), with the objective to financially support PhDs and postdocs in their training,
- various Science in Society grants and activities to strengthen the exchange and dialogue between science and society, and to promote science and research towards the general public, and above all young people,
- various grants under the Support for Research Communication scheme, to promote scientific outcomes and exchanges.
The FNR relies exclusively on independent peer review processes applying the internationally accepted quality standards when selecting which research projects to support.