Europlanet Funding Scheme FAQs

Who can apply?

Anyone can apply that wants to run an outreach activity in a country that is participating in the Europlanet project or in a member state of the EU.  The outreach activity must be linked to planetary science.

The Observatoire Paris-Meudon, who will be administering the funding on behalf of Europlanet, will only be able to make a payment to an organisation that has audited accounts.  If you are an individual or do not have audited accounts, you should team up with an organisation that does.

How much can I apply for?


Europlanet can award grants of amounts between 5 000 and 15 000 Euros.  You will need to include a detailed breakdown of your budget and a timeline showing project milestones in your application.

Please note that Europlanet only has 15,000 Euros of funding available per round. Although you can apply for the full amount, successful applicants may be offered a reduced amount if there are other strong applications that Europlanet also wishes to fund.

What are the aims of Europlanet in setting up the funding scheme?

By setting up the funding scheme, Europlanet aims to:

  • Capitalise on the inspirational value of planetary science for many national audiences, including the general public, in order to attract young people in science.
  • Encourage planetary scientists to communicate their research to wider audiences and to discuss issues with non-specialists.
  • Provide funding for small novel, innovative or pilot projects which could be repeated across Europe or to provide partial support for larger projects.
  • Encourage partnerships, such as those between scientists and educators, industry and professional communicators.

What criteria will the judging panel use to assess applications?


Europlanet’s outreach objectives are to motivate and enable European planetary scientists to be involved with outreach activities, and to find innovative ways of raising the profile of Europe’s planetary science activities among its citizens.

The judging panel will therefore look for proposals that:

  • Are innovative in developing new ways of communicating planetary science subjects or engaging “hard-to-reach” audiences (e.g. teenagers, young adults) with planetary science.
  • Will reach audiences in more than one European country, especially those in EU Under-represented Member States*
  • Will widen access to planetary science research (e.g. through citizen science projects, or by opening up access to facilities or experiments etc)
  • Will develop ongoing links between researchers and the wider community
  • Have a legacy beyond the funded period of the project
  • Will secure matched funding

When can I apply?

The call will open on 21st September 2017 and close on 31st January 2018.

When will I hear if my application has been successful?


The judges will meet in the spring of 2018.  You will hear by the beginning of June at the latest if your application has been successful.

What kind of projects has Europlanet funded in the past?

In the 2017 round, Europlanet awarded grants to:

  • 10 000 Euros to ‘OpenPlanetaryMap – Places on Mars’, a mapping and social platform for space enthusiasts and students, planetary researchers and mappers, educators and story tellers. This collaborative project will create and share location-based knowledge and maps of others planets in our Solar System.
  • 7 000 Euros to ‘Planets in Your Hands’ a project to construct models of planetary surfaces in square frames, giving a visual and tangible representation of a wide range of environments in our Solar System.

In the 2016 round, Europlanet awarded grants to:

  • 7 500 Euros to ‘Planets in a Room’ to prototype and develop a simple, low-cost, self-build spherical monitor to display planets and planetary data, and a website for building instructions, planetary maps and other data. If this first phase is successful, the remaining funding will be released to support the dissemination of the project.

In the 2012/2013 round, Europlanet awarded grants to three projects:
  

  • 6000 Euros to
 ‘Gaming a better Environmental Understanding’, a project to develop and prototype games that teach environmental science and planetary environments, aimed at teenagers, adults and the visually impaired.
  • 8 000 Euros to the ‘NEO Search Campaign’, an online educational outreach and citizen science program for the general public to make original discoveries of near-Earth objects (NEOs).
  • 6 000 Euros for ‘Meet our neighbours! – A tactile experience’, a project to to produce a set 13 tactile images of the main objects of the Solar System.

In the 2011/2012 round, Europlanet awarded grants to three projects:
  

  • 7 500 Euros to make a series of films ‘Back into the Future – Observing the Transit of Venus Now and Then’.
  
  • 7 000 Euros for ‘Meteorology of Mars in Schools’ an informal education project to build weather stations in schools and contrast the data with measurements from the REMS weather instrument on NASA’s Curiosity Rover
  • 5 700 Euros for ‘Virtual Planetary Globes‘, a project to create global maps of solar system bodies in a virtual globe format (see astroEDU collection of educational activities, ‘Children’s planetary maps‘, resulting from this project).

In the 2010/2011 round, Europlanet awarded grants to two projects:
  

  • 12 000 Euros to the Virtual Mars Rover (VMR) Mars Life Challenge multiplayer game for mobile phones
  
  • 4 000 Euros to fund 3D tactile models of the Moon for the visually impaired for use in planetaria

In the 2009/2010 round, Europlanet awarded grants to two projects:
  

  • 10 000 Euros to ‘A Space Eyeful – a Virtual Microscope for Extraterrestrial Rocks ‘
  
  • 5 000 Euros to The Rosetta Lander LEGO kit

* Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia.

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