Aalto Internal Funding Call Spring 2022 - For Africa/ South Asia Global programme initiatives

Aalto University is offering financial support for education and research collaboration projects with Sub-Saharan African and South Asian countries. The total budget for the call is 415 000 euros.
Students working in the University of Dar es Salaam

Projects are targeted to match both Aalto University’s strategy and the objectives of one or several of the following Ministry of Education and Culture’s (MEC) Global Programme Pilots: EDUCase Platform, FAPI, GINTL Africa and GINTL India, with an emphasis on EDUCase Platform whose national coordination is hosted by Aalto University.

The funding call targets education, research and impact collaboration with partners from Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia. Through its association with the national level Global Programme, it also promotes networking and visibility together with other Finnish higher education partners. The deadline for proposals is 13 March 2022 at 23.59 hours. A Q&A session is organized to clarify queries from PIs on 1 March at 9-10.

Funding for proposals with Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia

The total budget for the call is 415 000 euros.

  • Applications are divided into four types, of which small funding and seed funding are intended for early phase partnerships, and research/education projects or institutional projects for more established cooperation. All projects however aim at lasting results. The call budget is not earmarked, but an overall balance between project types is considered to ensure an opportunity for both early phase and more advanced projects to be supported.
  • Successful applicants are eligible for additional funding under this programme in possible upcoming calls.
  • The funding decisions will be made by the Vice President for Research based on the evaluation and recommendation of the Research Steering Group (ReSG) the Learning Steering Group (LeSG), as applicable.

See description of project types in the table below:

Small activity funding Seed funding Research/education project Institutional project
Purpose: for, conference, student cases, hackathon… etc Purpose: Development of a project/ course/ initiative involving Finnish and African/South Asian partners​ Purpose: for ex. joint project with partners and activity in African/South Asian countries​ Purpose: for ex. joint masters, summer school, life-wide learning partnership, innovation programme etc. ​

Time frame: ​1-12 months activity​, funding must be utilized by 31.5.2023

Time frame: ​6-12 months activity​, funding must be utilized by 31.5.2023

Time frame: ​12-24 months activity​, funding must be utilized by 31.5.2024

Time frame: ​12-24 months activity​, funding must be utilized by 31.5.2024

Funding: ​Up to 20,000€ ​

Funding: ​Up to 50,000€​

Funding: ​Up to 100,000€​

Funding: ​Up to 100,000€​

Detailed description on the criteria for funding, the evaluation process and format for the application is given below.

Eligibility for funding is subject to contributing to the general objectives of one or several of the four networks constituting Aalto’s Global South 2021-24 programme: EDUCase Platform, FAPI, GINTL Africa and GINTL India, and to the involvement of partners from Sub-Saharan African/ South Asian universities.

i. The funding supports initiatives that establish or intensify education or research collaborations in Aalto’s strategic research areas related to global sustainability, with the target regions and partners through one or several of the following means (suggestive but not limited to),

  • Joint case work on global challenges (for example, problem-based learning, entrepreneurship education, co-mentoring, co-creation etc.)
  • Joint research projects, workshops, preparation of funding applications, joint publications, mobility of researchers and staff etc.,
  • Piloting or sustaining mutually beneficial educational cooperation (for example, joint supervision, joint courses with ECTS, summer schools, double degrees in PhD education, student mobility etc.)
  • Promoting and disseminating research and education excellence related to sustainable development and academic cooperation with global south partners (for example, joint seminars, workshops, events, case results, education methods and frameworks, research show cases etc.,)
  • Identifying or testing new and innovative ways of cooperation that bring added value to the partnerships (for example, collaboration with non-governmental organisations, inter-governmental organisations or other societal partners, industries and startups, events for knowledge exchange, benchmarking, etc.,)
  • Creating activities that showcase Aalto as a strong leader among the Finnish partners towards a long term and sustainable collaboration with the target regions (for example, establishment of thematic expert groups for long term cooperation, collaboration with Finnish partners, drafting white papers for policy level funding, dialogues with funding organizations and innovation ecosystems in target countries etc.,)

ii. Please note that,

  • The applicants are professors (at any level) or permanent employees of Aalto University, or at least postdoctoral-level researchers having a work contact with Aalto University at least until the end of 2024.
  • The proposals should show a clear roadmap for creating and sustaining the cooperation for long term.
  • The proposals should include a minimum of one partnering university from the selected regions (Africa/Asia) and one other Finnish university or university of applied sciences from the lists of member organisations specified for the networks (see at the bottom 'Aims and Partners-GlobalSouthNetworks.pdf').

iii. The funding can be used for,

Covering  salaries (basic salary + actual personnel side costs, no overheads (YK)), travel costs, accommodation, organizing events, materials for education/research (for use in Aalto), publications and participation in joint conferences for the faculty, researchers and students from Aalto. Also, stipends and travel and accommodation costs etc., for visiting students, researchers, faculty and staff from partner institutions from the target regions.

iv. The funding cannot be used for,

Covering the costs for the other Finnish partners and transferring funds to the partner institutions for covering the purchase of research/education materials or salaries. The costs for the expenses (for example flight tickets and accommodation) can be reimbursed or covered directly (for example, hotel costs in Finland). Meanwhile this is an Aalto internal project, no overheads (YK) are applied to any of the cost categories.


Percentage of points


  • Proposal qualifies for reporting under at least 1 of the MEC pilot networks (EDUCase, FAPI, GINTL India/Africa)
  • At least 1 other Finnish HEI partner from the networks
  • Direct cooperation with universities in Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia


Relevance to Aalto strategy and academic excellence for education, life-wide learning, research and innovation activities


Relevance and contributions to MEC Global Programme’s goals

  1. Develop partnership with university/ies in Sub-Saharan Africa/ South Asia
  2. Develop collaboration with other Finnish HEIs
  3. Relevance to the target country’s sustainable development/innovation ecosystem
  4. Engagement of industry/NGOs/other societal partners
  5. Contributions to EDUCase/FAPI/GINTL Networks’ activities and events (for ex. promotional events, materials, trainings etc. that can be made available to the networks)


Key outcome 

Clarity in creating an impact within the programme duration, in line with the following Aalto objectives:

  • Deliver Aalto’s promise to be a world-class university in global sustainability, by integrating the Global South/emerging markets dimension to our academic programmes.
  • Be a leader in the new European innovation environment and academic funding, moving towards a green transition and sustainable innovation with Africa/ South Asia.
  • Objective to secure additional external funding and institutional sustainability beyond 2024.
  • Add value to the Finnish academic landscape at the intersections of sustainable development and Global South partnerships.




The timetable for the evaluation process is:

Submission of proposals - 13.3.2022

Evaluation by LeSG and ReSG – 11.4.2022

LeSG meeting and VP decision – 22.4.2022

ReSG meeting and VP decision - 28.4.2022

Declaration of results – 29.4.2022

Start of the projects - 3.5.2022

Application format and submission

Please fill in this application form:  no later than 13 March 2022. The application form allows saving the draft and continuing later. 

Q&A session for applicants

A Q&A session is organized on 1 March 2022 at 9-10, with Ella Bingham, Head of Research Services and coordinator of ReSG and Riina Subra, coordinator of Aalto MEC Global South programme and EDUCase Platform. The PIs planning to prepare proposals are welcome to join the session to clarify queries.

Please join the session through the Zoom link:

For further information please contact the coordinator of Aalto Global South Programme and EDUCase Platform [email protected] +358504066251.

Successful proposals are recommended to liaise and work closely with the Aalto Global South Programme to support the overall success of the pilots.

UPDATE on funded projects:

On 28.4.2022, the following projects were granted financial support under this call:

  • DEPLOY – Developing Problem-based pedagogies for Lesotho’s sustainable energy future, PI Pramod Bhusal, ELEC
  • Facilitated Business and Entrepreneurship in Emerging Economies - 5G-FBEEE, PI Marko Nieminen, SCI
  • SGT Case - Co-developing problem-based pedagogy for sustainability in higher education in Bhutan, PI Olli Varis, ENG
  • WiT Program for Global Sustainability, PI Saija Hollmén, ARTS
  • Published:
  • Updated: