Realising the global sustainable development goals


Research projects that are highly relevant to the UN’s global sustainable development goals in Agenda 2030.


Principal applicants must have completed their doctorate degree and be affiliated with a generally approved administrating organisation at Formas.


SEK 10-20 million per project.

Given decision: 2020-09-23 11:30


Preliminary decisions. Please note that only decisions published in Prisma is a guarantee of granted funding.

This call for proposals aims to create research that is highly relevant to the UN’s global sustainable development goals (SDGs) in Agenda 2030. The research should offer new perspectives on the SDGs by either highlighting key synergies or conflicts between different goals or by applying humanistic or social science perspectives that could benefit the field of sustainability. In this call, Formas wants to encourage researchers to both tackle significant scientific challenges and take action to enable their research results to be used to guide society, directly or indirectly, towards realising the SDGs.

The UN’s global sustainable development goals External link. within Agenda 2030, provide policy-makers, researchers and beneficiaries with a shared blueprint for goal setting, planning and implementation of measures for sustainable development. In principle, the goals bring together all the major global challenges. They address society’s development and people’s living conditions, as well as the safeguarding of nature. Efforts to achieve these goals must be grounded in a scientific approach that is developed during the research process and is based on experiences and new insights from sustainability efforts in practice.

In 2018, Formas implemented the call Perspectives on the Sustainable Development Goals. Seventeen projects were awarded planning grants for preparatory work on leading major research projects related to the SDGs. Formas encourages project participants who were awarded planning grants to apply for funding under this call. However, you do not need to have a planning grant to apply. All applications will compete on equal terms in this call.

This call for proposals aims to create research that is highly relevant to the SDGs in Agenda 2030. Formas seeks to fund applications for conducting socially relevant research that promotes Agenda 2030 efforts, nationally or internationally, and preferably with a long-term perspective. The call consists of two focus areas:

  1. Synergies and conflicts: This area invites applications that focus on overlaps between different SDGs. Research should focus on the links between at least three SDGs.
  2. Humanistic and social science perspectives: This area invites applications that focus on challenges that fall within one or more of the SDGs and apply humanistic or social science perspectives in their research.

Before you apply

The principal applicant must hold a PhD and be an employee at an administrating organisation that has been generally approved by Formas. Cooperation with beneficiaries are expected to be included in the project, but co-funding is not required. Interdisciplinary and/or international collaboration is encouraged, but is not required.

Costs that qualify for funding

When you apply for project funding, you can apply for a grant to cover both direct and indirect costs. Direct costs include costs for salaries, equipment and travel. Indirect costs are costs that are shared with others in your organisation, such as for administration, IT and renting of premises. Indirect costs are sometimes called overhead.

Grant amount and project duration

The grant amount sought for a project must be at least SEK 10 million and a maximum of SEK 20 million. The project must run for a minimum of 3 years (36 months) and a maximum of four years (48 months).


We recommend that you write your application in English, since the review panel that will assess your application is international. You can write your application in Swedish, but it will then be translated into English prior to assessment.

You apply for a grant in our application system, Prisma. The principal applicant needs to have a personal account in Prisma. In Prisma, you add all the information you need for your application. The organisation that will be the project’s administrating organisation must have an organisational account.

Read more External link. about how to apply in Prisma.

In the call text you will find everything you need to know when applying. For example what the application shall contain, how the application is registered in the application system Prisma, information about administrating organizations, evaluation criteria and the assessment process.

(Revised January 29, 2020)


A digital application is submitted in the Prisma application system External link.. Guidelines and information about what your application should contain can be found in the call text.

Download the call text as pdf , 289.9 kB.. (Revised January 29, 2020)

Information meetings

Gothenburg November 15

Stockholm October 9 (webcasted)

A first information meeting was held in Stockholm on October 9 (in Swedish). The entire meeting was webcasted. On the agenda:

Contact Person

Updated:19 November 2021
Page manager: Katarina Buhr