Call for proposals : Swedish Biodiversity Program 2017

This call has now been closed.

Please visit the Swedish Biodiversity Program page for more information about awarded projects 2017.



The National Sequencing Projects initiative at SciLifeLab aims to enable sequence analysis of unique and well-characterized sample collections.

SciLifeLab is a national infrastructure center for large-scale bioscience research. The center combines advanced technical knowhow and state of the art equipment with a broad knowledge in translational medicine and molecular bioscience. With support from the Knut and Alice Wallenberg foundation, SciLifeLab is able to dedicate significant funds to further subsidize the sequencing costs for excellent biodiversity projects in Sweden.

All applications are peer-reviewed to carry out as impartial assessments as possible.

Application deadline for this call is June 15, 2017.


Program Description

Sequencing to reveal genetic variation in nature

To further strengthen Swedish environmental genomic research, SciLifeLab has dedicated support to large projects aiming to uncover and understand genomic variability in nature by use of massively parallel sequencing.

Applications can target biodiversity of viruses, bacteria, archaea and eukaryotes and combinations thereof.

The program will support DNA sequencing in projects up to a total value of 9 MSEK. The minimum budget to apply for is 500 kSEK (excluding co-financing) with a maximum single grant of 2 MSEK.

All relevant technologies available within the National Genomics Infrastructure (NGI) are applicable. We also encourage combinations of metagenomics and single cell sequencing applications at the Microbial Single Cell Genomics facility, see “Opportunities for Microbial Single Cell Genomics” under related items for more information.


  • The project should aim to give novel biological insights and will also be evaluated based on societal benefit for the environment.


Terms and conditions for the grant

The grant will be awarded as a 90% deduction of reagent and running costs at NGI for junior researchers, and a 60% deduction for senior researchers. For junior researchers the doctoral degree must be awarded no more than seven years before the deadline of this call (deductions apply for parental leave, illness, residency and specialist training for clinically active professional groups, positions of trust in trade union organizations and student organizations in accordance with criteria applied by the Swedish Research Council).

  • All granted projects must accept the Data Access Policy for the National Projects.
  • Applicants should ensure that they have the required bioinformatics capabilities needed.
    • If the applicants lack certain capabilities, support from SciLifeLab can be requested as part of the application (see below).
  • All samples within the granted projects should have been received by SciLifeLab within 6 months from the announcement of granted projects, unless otherwise agreed in writing.
  • Ethical approval (if applicable) to conduct the study must have been obtained for all samples prior to sending in the application.
  • All applications will be judged on scientific impact as well as environmental value.
  • Additional co-financing used to strengthen the project with additional or supplementary methods for molecular profiling should be stated in the application.
  • Granted funds not used within 18 months of the announced decision will be returned to SciLifeLab and no longer available to the project.
  • Costs covered include sample processing at NGI as well as in the Microbial Single Cell Genomics facility.
    • We strongly encourage contacting the facilities to discuss setup and feasibility before sending in the application.


Bioinformatics and computation

  • Standardized bioinformatics provided by NGI will depend on the technology used, but can include assembly, mapping of reads, variant calling and basic functional annotation. Request a meeting at with NGI at the NGI Order Portal to discuss your project with NGI.
  • All projects are encouraged to have a bioinformatics consultation meeting to discuss the plan for data analysis. Request consultation meeting here.
  • The National Bioinformatics Infrastructure at SciLifeLab will handle allocations of bioinformatics support funded by SciLifeLab as an integral part of the National Projects evaluations. To take advantage of this opportunity projects may apply for bioinformatics support directly as part of the National Projects application (using the bioinformatics template).
    • Note that all projects are also welcome to apply for regular or long-term bioinformatics support according to the normal routes as described at
  • Computation for biodiversity is not an integral part of the call, but the application should describe the plan for computation and storage resources needed for the duration of the project for feasibility review. Use the provided template for computation and storage. Consultations to discuss computation is encouraged. Request consultation meeting here.


Instructions for Applying

Apply electronically at the SciLifeLab National Projects Application Portal:

In order send in applications, you must have registered an account in the SciLifeLab National Projects Application Portal. Your email address will be the account name in this portal and the administrator of the portal will review your account details once registered. If everything has been registered correctly the account will be enabled and you will receive an email with a link to a page for setting the password.

All templates and information is also available on the application portal, and you can view, work and save your application until it is submitted. Please note that all files that you upload need to be in pdf-format.

You are responsible for ensuring that the application is complete. Incomplete applications will be rejected early and not proceed to review. Attach only material that we explicitly request. SciLifeLab will not accept additional information after the closing date for applications, except for information we ourselves explicitly request.


Content of the Application

  • Summary (Max 1500 characters)
  • Popular scientific description in Swedish (Max 1500 characters)
  • Research project (Max 6 pages) (see below for specification, use provided template)
  • Budget (use provided template)
  • Compute and Storage Plan (use provided template)
  • Application for bioinformatics support if applicable (use provided template)
  • CV for main applicant (and collaborators if applicable) (Max 2 pages each)
  • List of the 10 most relevant publications in the last five years from the main applicant (an collaborators if applicable)
  • A statement from the head of department that co-funding is available.

Research project description

Use the application template for research project description, which includes:

  • Project Title
  • Project Classification
  • Purpose and aims
  • Background
  • Project Plan
  • Bioinformatics
  • Significance
  • Ethical considerations
  • Project Organization


Evaluation of applications

The applications will be subject to peer review by an evaluation panel.

Applications are judged with regard to the following main criteria: scientific quality, societal benefit and technical feasibility.

See the document “Application Evaluation” under related items for further information.



The final decision will be sent out by mail to the postal address specified for the main applicant. Decision on which projects that will be funded is expected to be taken by the SciLifeLab National Board in November 2017.

For more information, contact: