Programme Al Maqdisi┋French-Palestinian research cooperation
The Al-Maqdisi programme aims at strengthening cooperation and scientific and academic exchanges between French and Palestinian researchers and research laboratories.
The current call for proposals concerns projects (in hard or social sciences) that can include theoretical research, research for development, training for research, industrial applications and partnerships with the private sector. A strong focus will be put on the quality of scientific outputs and results of the projects (publications, patents, etc).
The call for proposals follows a procedure guaranteeing the scientific quality of operations and benefiting from the active support of both governments.
Elements will be considered positively in the selection process:
- The program is open to all scientific fields;
- Projects aiming at the creation of an International Associated laboratory (“laboratory without walls”), pooling together human and material resources of both partner teams towards a common, jointly-defined project;
- The involvement of researchers from several Palestinian universities and of one or several local companies;
- Projects involving co-funding;
- Priority is given to new collaboration and projects.
This call for proposals is open to all research and higher education laboratories belonging to higher education institutions, public research organizations or companies. The working experience of the project leaders, the coherence of the proposed approach, the participati on of young researchers and PhD students, as well as the importance of the expected outcomes will be examined closely during the selection process. The final selection will be made by acommittee of experts. The selected projects will obtain funding from both, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development, and the Ministry of National Education, Higher Education and Research.
- February 26th 2018 Launch of the call for proposals
- May 03 2018 Closure of the call for proposals
- August 2018 Selected projects list published online
- September 01st 2018 Launching of the projects
Instructions to the applicants
The following guidelines concern the attached application forms.
The selection process rests on the following requirements and principles:
- The project must be created and developed within the framework of a partnership between a French and a Palestinian research team;
- The project must include training through research;
- The project must aim at setting up or strengthening a centre for the training of researchers or a research centre in the Palestinian territories, over a long-term period;
- The project must specify expected publications and scientific outputs and include direct links with academic training and, when relevant, cooperation with the socio-economic, professional and industrial development sectors;
- The project cycle must be planned through a detailed schedule, listing the tasks of each of the parties as precisely as possible.
If the project includes one or several PhD defences, one of the team members must be qualified to supervise a PhD thesis.
Applicants shall submit their project by filling the attached application form. They can join, at their convenience, any document which may help understanding the project’s goals and applications.
The Palestinian team has to send via email (one PDF document of 2Mo maximum) the application form to the Palestinian coordinator and to the Consulate General of France in Jerusalem.
The French team has to follow Campus France application procedure by applying online on the dedicated website page.
This double application is necessary for the projects to be taken into consideration, and researchers from both teams must ensure that it is done.
Projects sent to one side only will not be considered.
The committee’s decisions are final; applicants must respect them. Grants are offered to the selected applicants on the basis of the proposal submitted; selected research teams must commit themselves to implement the submitted project and abide by the financial and administrative conditions ruling the programme.
The duration of a project shall not exceed two years.
The project proposals and reports shall be submitted in English only (exceptions can be made upon request from the teams, if all team members can work in French). Publications can be made in the language required by the relevant scientific outlet.
The committee will only review projects submitted according to the afore-mentioned rules and deadlines. Proposals which do not meet the required criteria will not be considered.
The project proposals shall all be submitted to a two-stage independent review:
Stage 1: Proposal review by panels of experts
Stage 2: Proposal review and ranking by a committee of experts
In order to conduct the evaluation of the submitted projects, each committee shall call on panel of experts working in a personal or professional capacity, to ensure that the proposals of the highest quality are selected for funding. Experts are called on the basis of the ir competence in the related fields and for their recent contributions to research.
During Stage 1, these experts will review the proposals according to standard evaluation forms provided by the committees; the evaluation will bear on the scientific interest of the proposals and of their expected outputs, the ability of both teams to carry out the project in the given framework and conditions, the adequacy of requested means to support the research, the relevance of the expected outcome in serving the community, the relevance of the project to the afore-mentioned priorities. Each committee can ask for more than one evaluation for the proposals, if necessary. The evaluations will remain confidential.
During Stage 2, the committee of experts discusses each of the submitted proposals and their respective scientific evaluations. The committee gathered during a selection meeting decides on the final ranking of the list of proposals. This final ranking process is based upon scientific evaluations and recommendations, budgetary considerations and field priorities. This results in 2 lists:
- List 1: list of proposals to be retained for funding, which are of sufficiently high quality and which meet all criteria and priorities.
- List 2: list of proposals which have a lower rank due to the criteria, priorities or quality mismatch, and rejected proposals which are found to be ineligible (before or during the course of the review process)
The joint committee decides to grant a specific budget to each project in accordance with available funds.
Applicants will be informed by email of the joint committee’s decision and the list of selected projects will also be published on the Consulate General of France in Jerusalem website.
The Al Maqdisi programme aims primarily at promoting exchanges between partners from both countries. This funding may cover travel expenses, short-term stays, exchanges between the two research teams involved in the partnership, as well as logistical support to acquire office and technical equipment. Therefore:
- Al Maqdisi funding covers in priority travel related expenses between the two countries of the researchers.
- Because Palestinian research teams often need to acquire light equipment in order to enable them to conduct their research, the purchase of documentation and/or of laboratory material may be considered
Under no circumstances should salaries or any other form of wages (for teachers, students, technicians, etc.) be paid by the Al-Maqdisi grant.
The evaluation of the project will consider positively the presence of additional funding for the project.
French public funding procedures are subject to rules which must be respected: the budget is managed on a yearly basis and cannot be retroactive; it is impossible to refund any expenses incurred before the official notification of the selection. Administrative procedures can sometimes lead to important delays.
Any request for funding shall be accompanied by a spending plan. The total budget allocated to each project over the two-year period (-2018 2020) amounts to a maximum of 20,000 Euros. The distribution of the budget between the French and Palestinian teams shall be agreed on by both teams. Each team will be allocated its share of the funding separately.
At the end of Year 1(September), each selected pair of teams shall submit a joint mid-term progress report and a mid-term financial report by filling the forms provided by the Joint committee, specifying the scientific progress made and the problems encountered.
The grant is paid in two payment orders to the Palestinian team, one per year. The grant for the French team is managed by Campus France (see details on Campus France website).
The second payment order will be launched upon submission and review of a mid-term progress report and a mid-term financial report by the end of year 1. The joint committee may decide to terminate funding should the mid-term reports considered unsatisfactory. At any time from selection to final reporting, grants may be suspended or terminated to teams that have failed to keep their commitments or have acted in an ethically questionable manner in the framework of the research project. Grants may also be terminated should one of the teams fail to submit necessary documents and ag reements within the deadlines.
Closure of project: by the end the year 2, teams must submit a final progress and financial report to both funding partners, 3 months after the end the latest.