Dioscuri Centres of Scientific Excellence – third call invitation (closed)

About the third call

Open for Polish Scientific Institutions.
Submission deadline Nov 30th 2019.



Invitation for Polish research institutions to submit proposals for establishing Dioscuri Centres of Scientific Excellence

The aim of this announcement is to receive submissions from research institutions willing to establish, host and accommodate Dioscuri Centres. Submissions meeting all formal requirements will be published in the Dioscuri call announcement, thus helping researchers find the suitable research institution in Poland. Researchers will be able to choose a research institution from beyond the published list, provided that the institution meets the formal requirements and commits to satisfying the basic conditions specified below.

This announcement is not a competitive call for proposals or part of such a call.

Programme description

Dioscuri is an initiative by the Max Planck Society (MPG), intended to establish Centres of Scientific Excellence (hereinafter referred to as Dioscuri Centres) in Central and Eastern Europe. The Centres will enable outstanding researchers to carry out top level research at research institutions in this part of Europe.

With the participation of the National Science Centre (NCN), the programme shall start with establishing up to ten Dioscuri Centres in Poland, in all research domains. Each newly established Centre will cooperate with a German Partner (scientist working at German research institution), to reinforce Polish-German cooperation in research. Funding will be provided by the NCN from the resources contributed by the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education and the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.

The Centres will be set up by leaders of Dioscuri Centre selected in international Dioscuri calls.

The third call for proposals for the establishing further Dioscuri Centres in Poland will be announced in December 2019 and concluded in 2020.

The call shall accept proposals from outstanding researchers with a PhD degree obtained within a period not exceeding fifteen years prior to the submission of their application to Dioscuri. Researchers shall submit proposals jointly with a Polish research institution, provided that they were not employed at the institution over 2 years preceding the date of submitting the proposal. Every call awardee shall establish and head a Dioscuri Centre, in which he or she will conduct innovative research at the world’s top level.

By submitting a joint proposal to the Dioscuri call, the Applicant (researcher) shall enter the call together with the Polish research institution. If successful, the research institution acting as Host Institution to the Dioscuri Centre, shall receive annually the equivalent of up to € 300,000, to be spent exclusively on the Dioscuri Centre’s operations, provided that the institution satisfies the basic conditions specified below. The funding period for each Dioscuri Centre comprises five years and may be extended by another five years (subject to mid-term evaluation and availability of funds).

The funding may be used to finance:

  1. remuneration for the head of the Dioscuri Centre (awardee of the Dioscuri call) to the sum of € 100,000 per year;
  2. salaries for members of the Dioscuri Centre’s research team and scholarships (scholarships may be granted solely in accordance with the NCN regulations);
  3. costs of research activities of the Dioscuri Centre (costs of materials, travel, publications and other research activities, etc.);
  4. costs of cooperation with the German Partner;
  5. funding does not provide for overheads of the research institution, administrative and financial costs, and research equipment and infrastructure.

The full name of a Dioscuri Centre shall read:

Dioscuri Centre of Scientific Excellence
A programme initiated by the Max Planck Society, jointly managed by the National Science Centre in Poland, and mutually funded by MNiSW and BMBF

Logos of Dioscuri partners

Addressees of the call

As specified in Article 27, section 1, Point 1), Act on the National Science Centre of 30 April 2010 (Journal of Laws of 2018, item 947 as amended) hereinafter referred to as “research institution”.

Terms of submitting proposals

The research institution hereby commits to fulfil basic conditions:

  1. sign a contract of full-time employment with the Leader of the Dioscuri Centre for the entire funding period (also in the case of funding period extention);
  2. sign contracts with Dioscuri Centre personnel: the form of employment is to be agreed upon by all parties (contract of employment, contract of specific task, contract of mandate; scholarship);
  3. provide from its own budget additional funding for the Dioscuri Centre in the amount of at least € 25 000 on average per year for the entire funding period;
  4. provide the Dioscuri Centre with optimal conditions for carrying out its research, including office/laboratory space and research equipment necessary for the completion of the research;
  5. provide administrative and financial services and support to the Dioscuri Centre, including support related to the successful applicant’s relocation (if applicable) and stay in Poland;
  6. provide at its own expense a full-time English-speaking administrative employee exclusively for the Dioscuri Centre for the entire funding period;
  7. offer a long-term perspective to the principal investigator beyond the Dioscuri funding period. This includes a commitment to employ or create a permanent position at the end of the funding period for which the principal investigator will be eligible to apply.

The research institution may also offer additional benefits (other than listed above) to facilitate the Dioscuri Centre, among others:

  1. dditional financial contribution for the Dioscuri Centre, allotted for research, personnel costs related to employing a member/members of the Dioscuri Centre’s research team, etc.;
  2. general support or other incentives to encourage the establishment of a Dioscuri Centre at the institution;
  3. others.

The National Science Centre reserves the right to verify whether an institution fulfils the conditions declared at any stage of the procedure through visits to the institution which aims to establish a Dioscuri Centre. Should a research institution fail to meet the declared conditions, the Dioscuri Centre may be established in another research institution.

Proposal submission

Information required in the proposal submission has been specified in the registration form to the this call announcement. All information must be provided in English.

  1. Submissions will be accepted only in digital form, i.e.:
    1. a single PDF file with a qualified electronic signature in PAdES format by an authorised representative of the research institution
    2. a file in an editable format (e.g. doc), containing identical information (as 1); this file need not bear a qualified signature
    Submissions must be sent by 30th November 2019 to the address of the Electronic Correspondence Register ESP (ePUAP) of the National Science Centre: /ncn/SkrytkaESP. In the subject line of the message please enter: "Zgloszenie Dioscuri 3".
  2. The submission will undergo an eligibility check by personnel of the NCN, and should it fulfil all requirements, it will be published in the Dioscuri call announcement, listed among the research institutions capable of acting as a Host Institution to a Dioscuri Centre.
  3. Research institutions may submit more than one proposal, provided that each proposal will be submitted under a different research discipline, as listed in section 5 of the registration form.


  1. Małgorzata Jacobs, phone: +48 12 341 9173, email: malgorzata.jacobs@ncn.gov.pl

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