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Luxembourg National Research Fund

Call for applications – deadline extended: Pairing Scheme – Politics meets Research on 8 March 2024

Do you want to engage with Members of parliaments (MPs) from Luxembourg’s Parliament? Does your research contribute to one of the topics of the call? Apply by 29 January 2024, 14:00 CET, for the new format of the Pairing Scheme, a collaboration between FNR with the research service from the Luxembourg Parliament.

  • The new edition of our Pairing Scheme implies a concept change. In its old version, MPs and researchers were paired to spend time together in their respective working environments.

    The new version comprises three phases:

    • The first stage is the organisation of a “World Café” on 8 March 2024 @Luxembourg’s Parliament. MPs and researchers will discuss together around 6 topics of relevance for both science and politics.
    • The second stage (between March 2024 and end of 2024) will consist in the writing of research briefs by selected researchers who participated to the World Café and the research service from Parliament (hereafter called ‘Cellule Scientifique’). These briefs will deal with one of the various topics discussed during the World Café, selected by the MPs. Each research brief resulting from this stage will be further published on the webpage of the Parliament end of 2024.
    • The third stage will consist in a conference beginning of 2025, where the publications will be presented to the public in a cosy atmosphere, where researchers, policymakers and society meet and discuss.

    For the participating researchers, the FNR will offer trainings on how to engage with policymakers and how to write a research brief, on a voluntary basis. The dates will be communicated soon.

  • The Cellule Scientifique, in collaboration with the FNR, launched a survey inquiring MPs about the topics they want to discuss with researchers from Luxembourg. Please see hereafter the 6 selected topics, which were mainly chosen by the Luxembourg MPs, and partly by the selection committee to reflect both the needs of the MPs and important areas of research in Luxembourg.

    • Rising poverty in Luxembourg and evolution of the labour market
    • Luxembourg and environmental issues
    • The housing crisis in Luxembourg
    • The challenges facing public school and university education in the face of societal change
    • Demographic trends and migration challenges in Luxembourg
    • Health challenges in Luxembourg

    Each topic will be treated in a multidisciplinary way. So different perspectives or angles are of relevance for each topic (e.g. the impact of artificial intelligence on a topic, economic, financial, social or psychological considerations, natural and data sciences approaches, technological trends….).

  • How to participate

    Please read the application guidelines carefully. If you are eligible, please fill out the registration form below by Wednesday 24 January 14:00 CET at the latest.

    Eligibility criteria

    You are eligible to the Pairing Scheme 2024 if you are:

      • A researcher working on one of the topics and for an accredited Luxembourgish Research Institution. We thrive for multidisciplinarity. You may treat the topic any pertinent perspective…, as long as you can prove that your research is related to the topic and relevant to MPs’ work, you may apply.

      • Available on Friday 8 March for the participation to the World Café.

      •  Willing to contribute to the writing of a research brief. Please note: not all researchers will be involved in the writing of a research brief.

      • Willing to participate to the conference beginning of 2025, where the research briefs will be presented to a broad public.

    If one of these elements does not apply, you are not eligible to the Pairing Scheme.

    Selection criteria

    In the registration form we ask you to answer some questions. This questionnaire will be used by the selection committee to choose the researchers that can participate in the Pairing Scheme 2024.

    The selection committee is constituted of members of the Cellule scientifique and the FNR. The committee will select a group of 2-3 researchers per topic. All answers will be assessed based on the following criteria:

      • Relevance of the research work for MPs

      • Relevance of the research work for Luxembourgish society

      • The comprehensibility of the answers given

      • A mix of perspectives per topic (Multidisciplinary expertise in the group of researchers)

      • The experience of the researcher and his/her knowledge about the Luxembourg situation.

    The selection committee will put together a group of representatives from research which is balanced in terms of gender and will make sure that for each topic there will be at least 1-2 researchers who has command of one the 3 official languages from Luxembourg.

    Selection process

    The registration form can be filled out and uploaded on by Wednesday 24 January 2024 at 14:00 CET at the latest. In the following days the selection committee will select the researchers. Beginning of February at the latest, the FNR will inform the researchers whether they will participate.

More information

World Café on Friday 8 March, from 9:30 to 13:30 in Luxembourg’s Parliament:


9h30 – 10h00: Welcome speeches by Parliament and FNR

10h00 – 12h00: World Café: 6 topics, max 3 rounds

12h00 – 13h00:  Lunch for everybody

13h00-13h15: Voting by MPs  for 3 research questions to be covered in the research briefs

13h30: end of the first part of the Pairing Scheme

During the World Café, for each table we expect 2-3 researchers and 2-7 MPs or parliamentary assistants from the different political parties . The researchers start with a short pitch (1 min) about their work, followed by an informal discussion about the respective topics for a total of 25 minutes. The discussions will be partly in English, partly in one of the three official languages of Luxembourg. The moderators for each table will make sure that the discussion can be done in a way that allows everybody to feel comfortable. Then the MPs will proceed to the next topical discussion in another room. A maximum of 3 rounds of discussions is foreseen.

Each discussion will be moderated and recorded in writing by the Cellule scientifique and/or FNR. From the discussion records, several research questions per topic that were debated will be extracted. All the research questions (maximum 18) will be presented to the MPs at the end of the lunch when they will vote for 3 research questions covered in a research brief.

Writing of a policy brief (March 2024 – end of the year 2024)

The Cellule scientifique together with 1-3 proficient researchers will tackle the selected research question between March and end of the year 2024. Not every researcher will be involved in writing a research brief. Here some more information about the research service and the task of writing a policy brief:

The main mission of the Cellule scientifique of Luxembourg’s parliament is to support Members of Parliament in making policy decisions based on scientific evidence. The research conducted by the Cellule scientifique is independent, impartial and objective.

Research briefs aim at providing a scientific and multidisciplinary response to current policy issues. They suggest policy options including their consequences in a structured and highly readable way while taking into consideration the national social, economic, political, and geographical context. Their length and format may vary; the documents are on average 10-20 pages long. While the documents are generally written in French, an English version and translation to French can be foreseen for the research documents written in the framework of the Pairing Scheme 2024.

Members of the Cellule scientifique will take the lead in the writing process of the latter. Clear responsibilities will be attributed depending on the expertise and availability of the contributing authors who will be subject to a contract specifying their remuneration and copyright. The contract and renumeration will be done by the Luxembourg Parliament. The documents will also mention the names and affiliations of each author involved in the review before publication on the Chambre des Députés’ internet website by end of 2024.

On the webpage, a summary of the policy briefs will be published for the general public.

Conference (beginning of 2025)

Beginning of 2025 a conference (or a series of conferences, t.b.d.) will be organised to present the outcomes of the research briefs to policymakers and the public. In these conferences, the main conclusions from the policy briefs will be presented and then be discussed between representatives of politics, research and society. These conferences will take place in a cosy location in Luxembourg City (t.b.d.).

Training offers

The FNR will offer training for the researchers that participate in the Pairing Scheme. A first training on how to engage with policymakers will be offered in February/March, before the World Café.

Priority will be given to the participating researchers. If spots are left, the training will be opened to all applicants of the Pairing Scheme and finally, to all researchers.

A second training will be offered on how to write a policy/research brief, between April and June. Priority will be given to the researchers who will contribute to the writing of a research brief. If spots are left, the training will be opened to all participants and applicants of the Pairing Scheme and finally, to all researchers.

If you have any other questions, please contact the Pairing Scheme team within FNR:

Jean-Paul Bertemes: | Didier Goossens : | Michèle Weber:

If you have any questions regarding the drafting of the policy brief, please contact the Cellule Scientifique:

Thank you in advance for your interest in our Pairing Scheme!

The Pairing Scheme Team

Related contacts

Michèle Weber, PhD

Science Communicator

+352 691 36 28 34

(Not available Tuesday and Friday afternoons)

Jean-Paul (Jhemp) Bertemes

Head of Science in Society

Didier Goossens

Head of Corporate Communication