The Strategic Partnership Programme is open on a rolling basis to applications involving strategic opportunities within all areas covered by SFI’s legal remit where significant co-funding from a company, collection of companies, funding agency, charity, philanthropic organization or Higher Education Institute is available. The Strategic Partnership Programme is specifically aimed at funding compelling research opportunities, on a flexible basis, that are not otherwise served by other national funding programmes. The scheme aims to support standalone initiatives of scale with strong potential for delivering economic and societal impact to Ireland. 

Funding available

SFI’s focus for the Strategic Partnership Programme is to foster and develop partnerships of scale. Therefore, it is our expectation that our partner in the programme will commit significant co-funding to the partnership.  Flexible models for cost-sharing will, however, be considered. The exact contribution that SFI may grant to a specific collaborative initiative and the approach to cost-sharing will be dependent upon the strategic nature of the collaboration and the benefits likely to be derived for the partners involved and the Irish economy.

How to apply

Applications to the Strategic Partnership Programme consist of a 2-stage process. Interested parties are requested to complete a brief Expression of Interest (EoI) addressing:

  • The nature of the collaboration and co-funding available (including host institution support)
  • The strategic benefit of the collaboration to each party involved
  • The potential impact (both economic and societal) of the co-funded initiative

Additionally, the lead academic applicant is requested to submit a full CV, using the template provided in the EoI form. Completed EoIs should be returned to partnerships@sfi.ie. EoIs will be reviewed by SFI staff who may request a meeting with applicants to discuss the proposal for partnership further. Applicants that clearly demonstrate the strategic importance of the collaboration to all partners involved and that have strong potential for delivering economic and societal impact to Ireland will be invited to submit a full proposal. Full proposals will be evaluated using a mechanism deemed appropriate by SFI, such as international peer review.

Please note that industry-academic collaborative projects undertaken within the context of an SFI-funded Research Centre will be supported through the SFI Research Centres Spokes Programme, and as such these projects are not considered to be appropriate for this Strategic Partnership Programme. It is anticipated that the SFI Research Centres Spokes Programme will be launched at the end of 2013.

For queries relating to the Strategic Partnership Programme or to schedule a meeting with SFI, please contact partnerships@sfi.ie