Funding for Indo-Finnish collaboration: Innovative health and well-being solutions for all

Tekes and the Indian Department of Biotechnology (DBT) will jointly fund Indo-Finnish R&D and innovation cooperation. Funding is available for both industrial projects and projects of research organisations. Collaborative projects between industry and academia are encouraged. In case of academic research, projects that engage a technology developer and a technology end-user/first customer are strongly recommended.
Hakuaika: ke 13.05.2015 - to 17.09.2015

The aim is to launch ambitious joint projects of a high international standard that address a specific Indian or global need and have a high commercial potential and lead to societal benefits.

Successful projects will be funded by Tekes in Finland, and by DBT in India.

In this call, Tekes favours projects in the field of the Bits of Health 2014–2018 and the BEAM – Business with impact 2015–2019 Programme.

The joint projects must meet the requirements of the funding organisations. In the Finnish part of the project, the general funding terms of Tekes will be applied, and in the Indian part of the project, the general funding terms of DBT will be applied.

Timetable of the call

Launch of the call: 13 May 2015
Dead-line for project proposals: 17 September 2015
Funding decisions: end of December 2015

Eligible Finnish Applicants

In this call Tekes can fund

  1. R&D and innovation projects of companies or of consortia of companies registered in Finland. Company projects will be funded by Tekes according to normal funding terms.
    Further information

  2. projects of Finnish research organisations. (NOTE: In this call, the BEAM Programme will only fund company-led research projects.)
    Public research projects funded in this call by Tekes are expected to include close collaboration with companies or other type of organisations interested in commercially utilising the results. The aim is to achieve competence and results that can be used as a springboard for the companies' own research and development projects.

    Co-funding from companies is required, and shall cover at least 10 % of the research project costs.
    Further information

  3. company-led joint projects of companies and research organisations
    Further information about this project type is available in Finnish

Eligible Indian Applicants

The Indian side of the consortium can either be led by a company or a research institution.

  1. For company:
    i. Should be an Indian Company registered under the Companies Act 2013 and in which 51% (or more) of the ownership is held by Indian citizens.
    ii. Company should have in-house R&D unit recognized by DSIR or should have applied for the same. First release will be made after obtaining DSIR recognition.

  2. For academic / research partner:
    i. Public and/or Private Universities and Research Institutions having a well established research support system, for basic or applied research. Registration/recognition/accreditation/certification from a government body will be mandatory.

What kind of projects will be funded?

The projects funded in this call are expected to recognise a real need and aim to solve a relevant health problem in India and/or globally.

The projects may aim at developing affordable solutions for low-resource settings, e.g. Indian rural needs, or focus on higher-end products or services. Developing innovative processes, or piloting, demonstration and testing can also be included in the projects.

Understanding the user needs and how the solution will benefit the patient or the customer will be crucial. Multidisciplinary approach is to be used when necessary. Engaging end-users or customers in the projects is strongly encouraged.

Project topics may include themes like:

  • Digital solutions for health and wellbeing
  • Use of big data in health and well-being
  • Solutions that help bring health services to those most in need
  • User-friendly methods for health counseling
  • Sanitation and its health impacts
  • Health impacts of environmental issues like air quality

The projects must be Finnish-Indian joint projects with a common project plan and they need to build up Finnish-Indian partnerships in order to enhance benefits to come for both Indian and Finnish economic life and society.

At least one organisation from Finland and one organisation from India must be involved as partners.

How to apply

Finnish and Indian partners apply for funding from their national funding organisations according to each funding organisations' practices.

Finnish applicants shall make their applications following Tekes' normal quidelines and using Tekes' online service. Select 'India' in the menu located in the basic information section of the application form.

Finnish applicants who want to apply for funding from the BEAM Programme (a joint programme of Tekes and the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs) shall include in the application a template on foreseen societal impacts in developing countries.

The BEAM programme can provide up to 15% higher funding levels for so-called ecosystem projects that involve at least three company partners and can be expected to have more extensive societal impacts in India and possibly other countries.

Indian Applicants should submit both hard copies and an electronic version (soft copy) of the proposal to DBT. The electronic version (soft copy) should be e-mailed and hard copies (5 no.) should be sent to Dr. Shailja V. Gupta (shailja@dbt.nic.in) by the closing date: 17th September, 2015.

Finnish and Indian co-applicants will develop a joint project plan that will be sent to both Tekes and DBT together with the funding organisation -specific documents. See Guidelines for writing a joint project plan.

Applicants are recommended to contact their national funding organisation before submitting applications.

Review Process and Evaluation

All applications will be handled strictly confidentially.

Tekes will evaluate the applications using Tekes' normal in-house evaluation procedure, and DBT using their normal evaluation procedure with outside evaluators. Applications related to the BEAM programme will also be evaluated by experts from the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. To harmonise the processes, common evaluation questions will be used by both organisations. Based on the Finnish and Indian evaluation results, Tekes and DBT will form a consensus on the projects to be funded.

Evaluation criteria

The joint projects must meet the general requirements of the funding organisations.

The projects to be funded are chosen by evaluating them as a whole. The evaluation is based on the points listed in the guidelines for writing a project plan. Special emphasis will be on

  • relevance of the recognised problem and the proposed solution
  • novelty, quality and innovativeness of the project plan
  • impact of funding through utilisation of the results (intended business or other type of utilisation, impact on renewal and competitiveness of businesses)
  • technology, innovation or know-how to be developed
  • feasibility of the project plan
  • resources to be used
  • cooperation to be developed or utilised; value addition.
  • benefit created to the Finnish and Indian partners
  • impact on economic, societal and environmental wellbeing factors for both countries

Link to Tekes' Programmes

Tekes may link the funded projects to current programmes Bits of Health or BEAM – Business with Impact.

  • Digital health projects of companies or research organisations may be linked to the Bits of Health Programme.
  • Company projects with a special emphasis on needs in low-resource settings and fulfilling the special criteria may be linked to the BEAM programme. This type of projects may be eligible for additional funding.
  • Other type of projects suitable to the call theme may be funded outside Tekes' programmes.

Funding decisions

Tekes and DBT will, after having formed their mutual understanding on the projects to be funded, make their funding decisions according to their normal procedures.

Tekes and DBT will inform their grantees about the funding decisions according to their normal practices.

DBT's support to Industry shall not exceed 50% of the total project cost, 50% of the contribution will mandatorily come from the Industry.

  • As per DBT's regulations, project expenditure eligible costs for academic / research institutions will include: equipment costs (capital assets), salary cost towards research manpower employed for the project, consumables, contingency, travel and overheads. For companies, the cost breakup for the DBT component of the proposal shall be: Capital costs to be limited to 30% of the DBT cost; Manpower costs also to be limited to 30% of the DBT cost; balance will cover consumables and travel costs. Overhead costs will not be permissible.

Administration of the funded projects

Funding granted by Tekes and DBTwill be governed by the general terms and conditions of each funding organisation, respectively.

Intellectual property

Tekes- and DBT funded participants to the projects shall agree upon the ownership, access rights and exploitation of the intellectual property generated during the cooperation. The agreements shall be made in written. The guidelines of the funding organisations should be followed when making the agreements.

In minimum, a letter of intent between the collaborators should be included in the application stating the desire for cooperation and acknowledging that each participant has understood the general terms and conditions of the other project parties.

How to find partners?

Tekes and DBT are willing to help Finnish organisations find Indian partners and Indian organisations find Finnish partners.

Valuable information for partnering with Finnish organisations:

Valuable information for partnering with Indian organisations:

Useful information about Finland and India

Useful information about Finnish networks and India can be found at e.g. the following web pages:

Funding organisations in nutshell

Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India
DBT is one of the leading research organisations for biotechnology in India, and an important funding source for biotechnology. The mandate of DBT includes

  • Promote large scale use of Biotechnology
  • Support R&D and manufacturing in Biology
  • Responsibility for AutonomousInstitutions
  • Promote University and Industry Interaction
  • Identify and Set up Centres of Excellence for R&D
  • Integrated Programme for Human Resource Development
  • To serve as Nodal Point for specific International Collaborations
  • Establishment of Infrastructure Facilities to support R&D and production
  • Evolve Bio Safety Guidelines, manufacture and application of cell based vaccines
  • Serve as nodal point for the collection and dissemination of information relating to biotechnology

Tekes – the Finnish Funding Agency for Innovation
Tekes is the main public funding organisation for research and development and innovation in Finland.Tekes' funding and services promote challenging and innovative R&D and innovation projects of companies, universities and research institutes. Tekes works with the top innovative companies and research units in Finland. Annually, Tekes finances some 1,500 business R&D projects, and almost 600 public research projects. Research, development and innovation funding is targeted to projects that create in the long-term the greatest benefits for the economy and society.

Tekes actively promotes R&D&I cooperation between Finland and India, and encourages Finnish enterprises develop their businesses in India. To facilitate Indo-Finnish cooperation, Tekes collaborates with key actors of the Indian innovation ecosystem.

As a member of the Team Finland network Tekes offers partners from abroad a gateway to the Finnish innovation ecosystem.

Further information

Finland

Auli Pere
Programme Manager
Health and Well-being
Bits of Health Programme
Tekes
Tel. +358 50 5577 799
auli.pere(at)tekes.fi

Christopher Palmberg
Programme Development Manager
BEAM – Business with Impact Programme
Tekes
Tel. +358 50 5577 966
christopher.palmberg(at)tekes.fi

Markus Kulmala
Adviser
Young companies
Tel. +358 50 5577 651
markus.kulmala(at)tekes.fi

Helena Viita
Technology Director, Kuopio
Growth companies
Tel. +358 2950 26640
helena.viita(at)tekes.fi

Outi Tuovila
Senior Technology Adviser
Large Companies and Public Organisations
Tel. +358 50 339 2542
outi.tuovila(at)tekes.fi

Harri Ojansuu
Senior Technology Adviser
Large Companies and Public Organisations
Tel. +358 40 837 4322
harri.ojansuu(at)tekes.fi

India

Shailja Gupta
Director
International Cooperation
Department of Biotechnology
Ministry of Science and Technology
Tel: 91-11-24363748
shailja(at)dbt.nic.in