Apply for Unite! Seed Fund to foster collaborative teaching, research and student activities

Unite! offers financial boost for collaborative ideas from teachers, researchers and students across the Unite! alliance of nine European universities. The deadline for applications is 15 March 2024.
Jar full of coins representing Unite! Seed Fund.

Unite! University Alliance's seed fund aims to stimulate and support bottom-up proposals by teachers, researchers and students for collaborative activities and help form sustainable academic and student communities across the nine Unite! universities: 

  • Graz University of Technology, Austria
  • Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan, Sweden
  • Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Spain
  • Universidade de Lisboa, Portugal
  • Technische Universität Darmstadt, Germany
  • Politecnico di Torino, Italy
  • Institute Polytechnique de Grenoble, France
  • Wroclaw University of Science and Technology, Poland
  • Aalto University, Finland

Unite! wants to activate the co-creation of e.g. joint research projects, study offers, blended intensive programmes, long-term collaborations in teaching and/or research units as well as extra-curricular or intercultural activities by students.

Applications for Teaching & Learning and Research & PhD seed fund

  • must include at least three Unite! member universities
  • up to 10 000 Euros for "exploration" activities like for establishing contacts and formulating collaboration ideas
  • up to 80 000 Euros for development activities like building blended/joint courses or developing joint research proposals
  • During the application preparation phase, please contact Unite! Key Liaison Officer at Aalto, Minna-Kaarina Forssén, tel +358 50 911 5262, so that we are able to coordinate applications from Aalto. Supporting document from the dean of your school or head of unit should be attached to your application.

Teaching & Learning funding measure:

Updated on 7 March: We would like to inform all the interested applicants of an update on what can no longer be funded via Unite! Seed Fund on ‘Teaching & Learning’: Grant proposal writing, and research activities can no longer be funded via the Unite! Seed Fund. What can however be included is preparatory work/activities undertaken BEFORE proposal writing is commenced such as formation of consortium, travel for content discussion, etc.

Research & PhD funding measure: 

Applications for Student Activities

For student activities there must be students from at least two Unite! universities. The maximum amount of funding for a proposal is 20 000 Euros. 

Deadline for applications 

The deadline for all applications is 15 March 2024. Funding decisions are expected by 31 May 2024. Applications should be emailed to: [email protected] latest 15 March 2024. 

Virtual matchmaking event on 16 February

Are you looking for partners for your Unite! Seed Fund proposal? This virtual matchmaking event on 16 February 2024, 15:00-17:00 (14-16 CET), aims to foster meaningful collaborations, paving the way for more Unite! projects to become a reality. Please save this date in your calendar. During the meeting, you will have the opportunity to meet potential Unite! partners in breakout rooms (1 breakout room per project idea). The event will cover all three funding lines (Student Activities, Teaching & Learning, Research & PhD). It is open to the entire Unite! community (teaching staff, teaching and learning units, researchers and research Units, students and student associations).  

Date and Time: February 16, 2024, 15:00-17:00 

Platform: Zoom Meeting Link 

Submission guidelines for the matchmaking event: If you have a project idea to present, submit a short abstract (100 words) along with your contact details to [email protected]  by February 11, 2024. 

Submission guidelines for Seed Fund projects: Applications can be submitted until 15 March 2024 via email to [email protected]

Proposals looking for partners

So far 40 proposals from the nine Unite! universities are looking for partners. You can see a list of them in the attached excel below. Join the matchmaking to meet the and discuss more on the proposals that interest you! 

Frequently asked questions 

1.  Who can apply?

Funding Line: Teaching and Learning

  • Teachers (Professors, academic staff)
  • Teaching & Learning units

Funding Line: Research and PhD

  • Doctoral Researchers
  • Early-career Researchers (e.g., Post-docs, Ad-hoc lecturer/professor etc.)
  • Research Units (i.e., Doctoral Schools/programmes, Research centres, PhD communities etc.) 
  • Tenured Researchers (e.g., Professors, Associate Professors etc.)

Funding Line: Student Activity

  • Under- and Postgraduate students (including PhD Students)
  • Student organisations/associations
  • Units and service centres of Unite! Universities (such as sports unions, language centres etc.)

2.  What can be funded?

  • Personnel costs should be included with clear justification (e.g., organisational tasks, conceptualising, preparatory work, accrediting, applying, setting up conditions). 
  • Travel expenses (sustainable modes of travel preferred, Erasmus+ mobility schemes should be used wherever possible).
  • Other costs that can be funded include material resources, research consumables, on-site/blended workshops, external service providers (e.g., moderators, language services). A small budget should be planned in the expenses if you intend to use Unite!'s Digital Campus. 
  • Acquisition of large technical equipment and replacement of standard equipment is excluded.

Funding Line: Teaching and Learning

  • Staff cost for teaching or grants/stipends for students are not funded.

Funding Line: Research and PhD

  • Costs for PhD or Post-doc stipends are not funded.

Funding Line: Student Activity

  • Student grants or remuneration are excluded from funding.

3.  What are the application requirements?

Funding Line: Teaching and Learning & Research and PhD

Applications must comprise of research/academic staff or teachers or teaching units from at least three Unite! member universities.     

Funding Line: Student Activity

Applications must comprise of at least students or student organisations from two Unite! member universities.

4.  What are the necessary supporting documents?

Funding Line: Teaching and Learning & Research and PhD

Supporting documents by the dean of studies of the participating departments of the universities.

Funding Line: Student Activity

Supporting documents by the student organisations, department/unit heads wherever deemed necessary.

5.  When is the application deadline?

Due date: 15 March 2024

6.  When are the evaluation decisions expected?

Decisions will be taken by 31 May 2024

7.  Who should be contacted for application guidance and further questions?

Inquiries can be emailed to: [email protected] or you can contact the following people at Aalto: 

For Teaching and Learning – contact [email protected], +358 50 911 5262

For Reseach and PhD – contact [email protected]

For Student activities – contact [email protected]

8.  How should the applications be submitted?


For Teaching and Learning – contact [email protected], +358 50 911 5262

For Reseach and PhD – contact [email protected]

For Student activities – contact [email protected]

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