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Luxembourg National Research Fund


Bilateral PhD & Postdoc grants

  • Country/ies:

    Canada , Japan , Singapore
  • Deadline: 08-03-2023 14:00 2023 Call launching December 2022
Home International Cooperation AFR Bilateral: RIKEN IMS | SINGAPORE | QUEBEC


Due to budget constraints, the AFR-bilateral call will be run only every second year. Therefore, the next call will be launched in 2025 only (call deadline in Spring).

Through the research grant scheme AFR (Aides à la Formation-Recherche) PhD and postdoctoral level research training in Luxembourg and abroad is supported.

This specific call is dedicated to the cooperation between Luxembourg based research institutions and public research institutions and universities from Quebec (Canada), Singapore, and the RIKEN IMS Center (Japan).

By offering PhD- and Postdoc grants conducted jointly in Luxembourg and selected countries abroad, the FNR aims to foster bilateral research collaboration and strengthen networking activities and links between public research institutions of both countries.

In line with FNR’s vision, mission and strategic priorities, the key objectives of the AFR bilateral programme are stated as follows:

  • Attract and train the most talented doctoral and postdoctoral candidates from any nationality in Luxembourg
  • Foster international mobility of doctoral and postdoctoral researchers and support research collaboration with specific partner countries (i.e. Singapore, Quebec (Canada), and Japan (Riken IMS Center)
  • Enhance high quality standards for PhD training and Postdoctoral research in Luxembourg, by ensuring that the principles of the National Quality Framework for Doctoral Training are respected in the framework of the AFR programme.

The AFR programme has a bottom-up approach, i.e. proposals in all domains of research and technological development are eligible for funding. Proposals do not need to align with the National Research Priorities (NRP), but should fall within the expertise of the main researchers supervising/mentoring the grant’s beneficiaries. The programme targets the most talented researchers to be trained in high quality research environments that ensure an optimal PhD training / Postdoctoral research environment.

In these AFR bilateral grants, consortia of supervisors from Luxembourg and an International collaboration partner can apply for joint projects of a duration of 4 years with up to 2 positions (PhD and/or Postdoc). The positions are considered as open positions, i.e. later grant beneficiaries (PhD and/or Postdoc) do not need to be known at submission stage.

In the AFR bilateral programme, the involved research groups from the two different eligible countries/ Host Institutions should have complementary expertise to guarantee an optimal research and training environment for the beneficiaries. Through the bilateral international cooperation, beneficiaries will benefit from training opportunities in both institutions and countries and the supervision/mentoring by at least two experts in their field. Scientific support and training offered to the AFR beneficiaries as well as an excellent research framework are key elements for a successful completion of the research project.

The majority of the research activities will need to be carried out at a Luxembourg based eligible research institution, i.e. more than 50 % of research time is spent in Luxembourg, under an employment contract. Additionally at least 20% of the research time must be spent at the international partner (i.e. Singapore, Quebec (Canada), and Japan (Riken IMS Center).

The funding available for the 2022 call may cover up to 9 positions.


All applications must be submitted via the FNR Online Grant Management System.

Collective applications for at least 2 PhD and/or Postdoc positions. In this case the proposal is submitted by a coordinator at an eligible Luxembourg host institution. It is not expected that the respective PhD and/or Postdoc candidates are already known at the application stage. 

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