Financing schemes

The Origins Center supports the research community in formulating innovative research proposals. Relevant funding opportunities are published via the website and, of course, via our newsletter.

Small projects call 2021-2022

NWA-ORC call 2021-2022

Financing schemes

NWA small projects call 2021-2022

We now invite you to submit a pre-proposal to the Origins Center.

The Dutch Research Agenda (NWA) has opened a third small projects call. NWO has left it up to the routes to design their internal procedure, as long as it is open and transparent. The Origins Center steering group will coordinate the proposal on the route Origin of life on Earth and in the Universe, in a similar process as the 2020 call. Below you find a brief summary of the call. 

The maximum budget reserved for the Origins Center route is 300 k€. The steering group will reserve the optional 5% management costs to coordinate this effort. With the remaining 285 k€ we can fund up to three projects.

To accommodate for three projects and allow for a fair selection, we limited the budget per proposal to 95 k€. Proposals can submitted by a team of one PI and at least one Co-I. There is a maximum number of one (1) proposal per PI.

It is only possible to submit one (1) proposal per person, both as PI and as Co-I. This keeps the chances equal for all researchers.

Budget allocation

Proposals are solicited in the range of 50-95 k€. The proposal budget should include:

  • Personnel: Postdoctoral researcher (PD) or personnel of colleges, educational institutions and other organisations
  • Non-scientific personnel (NSP) can only be applied for in combination with a PD. If you want to apply for NSP only, please contact us at
  • Material costs: only in combination with PD
  • Knowledge utilisation: 5-20% of the budget per subproject. This is mandatory. If you have no specific ideas for knowledge utilisation, we are happy to accommodate you, by including your work in the larger Origins Center programmes that are currently being developed, including a podcast series.


For the internal Origins Center procedure, we identified five steps:

  • February 25, 2022: Preproposal submission to the steering group.
  • February 28, 2022 – March 10: Eligibility check of submitted proposals by Origins Center network.
  • March 11, 2022: Final ranking and proposal draw by independent panel.
  • March 14, 2022: Announcement of three drawn proposals that will be develop to a full proposal for submission to NWO. This step will be coordinated by a member of the steering group.
  • April 5, 2022: submission of final proposal to NWO.

Format and evaluation

The mandatory pre-proposal template includes a 300-word abstract and the list of NWA requirements that need to be addressed. A budget description is not necessary at this stage. The template can be found here.

All network members will be asked to evaluate all pre-proposals based on seven questions related to the criteria. The evaluation questions can be found here.

We trust this evaluation process, but we do reserve the rights to remove a proposal when it is considered inappropriate for this call. A proper explanation will be provided when this would be the case.


Please don’t hesitate to contact us at:

Dutch Research Agenda – Research along routes by Consortia (NWA-ORC 2021-2022)

Please let us know if you are working on a proposal and need any support

The annual NWA-ORC funding round is open for registration of new initiatives. This funding round encourages research that is set up and carried out by interdisciplinary consortia that include representatives from the full breadth of the knowledge chain as well as relevant societal (public and/or private) partners, including citizens. 

If you are interested in submitting a proposal into the primary NWA Route The origin of life – on Earth and in the universe, consult the Research Agenda of the Origins Center as a starting point to embed your research.

NWA-ORC timeline

January 18, 2022, from 9.30 to 11.30: NWA-ORC webinar
February 1, 2022: deadline submitting initiatives. Initiative submission is mandatory to participate in the call.
June 9, 2022: deadline submitting pre-proposals
January 24, 2023: deadline submitting full proposals


Please don’t hesitate to contact us for support at:

Learn more via NWO


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