Short-Term Scientific Missions

Short Term Scientific Missions (STSM) are exchange visits aimed at supporting individual mobility, strengthening existing networks and fostering collaboration between researchers. They contribute to the scientific objectives of the COST Action, whilst at the same time allowing those partaking in the missions to learn new techniques, gain access to specific data, instruments and/or methods not available in their own institutions/organisations.

STSM Coordinator Dirk Sudholt

The COST Action ImAppNIO CA15140 (Improving Applicability of Nature-Inspired Optimisation by Joining Theory and Practice) is calling out for applications for Short-Term Scientific Missions.

Short Term Scientific Missions (STSM) are exchange visits aimed at supporting individual mobility, strengthening existing networks and fostering collaboration between researchers. An STSM should contribute to the scientific objectives of the COST Action: bridging the gap between theory and practice in nature-inspired optimisation, whilst at the same time allowing those partaking in the missions to learn new techniques, gain access to specific data, instruments or methods not available in their own institutions.

STSMs are mainly intended for early stage researchers. STSMs should take place before 31/03/2018. We also welcome informal expressions of interest for STSMs planned past this date by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Applicants are asked to carefully read the funding rules and rules for eligibility detailed in section 7 of the COST Vademecum (Short Term Scientific Mission on pages 30-31).

responsive mode is used: there is a monthly deadline on the 15th of each month. Applicants will receive a decision within 30 days of this monthly deadline (and usually sooner than that). We recommend to apply for an STSM at your earliest convenience, well in advance of the intended stay.

We particularly encourage early career researchers (less than 8 years after PhD award), female reseachers and researchers from COST inclusiveness target countries to apply.

What can be funded?

The COST Action provides a financial contribution towards the travel and accomodatation cost as well as subsistence. The reimbursement rules are laid out in the COST Vademecum (Short Term Scientific Mission on pages 30-31). The daily reimbursement rate is at most EUR 160 maximum and does not exceed EUR 2500 in total.

Application Process

Applicants must carefully read the funding rules and rules for eligibility detailed in the COST Vademecum (Short Term Scientific Mission on pages 30-31). All applicants must obtain a letter of acceptance from a researcher affiliated to the host institution confirming that they can undertake the STSM on the given dates prior to submitting an application. All applicants must register for an e-COST profile at e-services.cost.eu where they must add their bank account details to their profile. All applicants must complete, submit and download their STSM application online at e-services.cost.eu/stsm. All applicants must send their submitted STSM application form and the relevant supporting documents by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for evaluation.

The list of supporting documents to be submitted for the evaluation are:

  1. Letter of acceptance to the applicant from a researcher affiliated to the host institution.
  2. The submitted STSM application form (downloadable when the online application is submitted).
  3. A detailed working plan including an explanation on how the proposed STSM can contribute to the scientific objectives of ImAppNIO (max. 1000 words).
  4. An explanation of the budget request (table).
  5. A Full CV (including a list of academic publications if applicable).

 

The application will then be assessed by the STSM evaluation panel (Thomas Jansen, Carola Doerr, Dirk Sudholt). The following criteria will be used to assess applications:

  • Relevance to ImAppNIO’s objectives (see the Action's Memorandum of Understanding)
  • Clarity and quality of proposed visit and work plan
  • Applicant’s CV
  • Anticipated outputs and outcomes
  • Detailed budget plan

 

The applicant will be formally notified of the outcome of their STSM application by the STSM evaluation panel within 30 days after the deadline following their submission.

After an STSM

Within 30 days from the end date of the STSM, the successful applicant must submit a scientific report to the host institution and by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The report should contain:

  1. Purpose of the STSM;
  2. Description of the work carried out during the STSM;
  3. Description of the main results obtained;
  4. Future collaboration with the host institution (if applicable);
  5. Foreseen publications/articles resulting from the STSM (if applicable)

 

Failure to submit the scientific report within 30 days from the end date of the STSM will effectively cancel the grant.

The applicant is also responsible for acquiring an official acceptance letter/email confirmation of acceptance from a researcher affiliated to the host institution formally accepting the scientific report. This formal acceptance of the scientific report has to be sent to by email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for archiving purposes.

Claims for reimbursements will only be processed after the scientific report and the acceptance from the host institution have been received.