Scottish Alliance for Geoscience, Environment and Society

International Collaboration Scheme (SICS)



The International Collaboration Scheme is designed to offer flexible funding for SAGES scientists (the applicant) to interact with colleagues based anywhere outside of the United Kingdom (the co-applicant).

In recognising challenges posed by Covid-19 we welcome innovative proposals for remote collaboration. Support can cover such items as subscriptions to collaboration tools or services that aid hosting online meetings, seminars and events. We do not exclude travel, where it adheres to Institutional, Scottish Government and collaborative nation guidelines, but we will not fund multiple visits, and we encourage remote collaboration wherever possible.

We particularly encourage collaboration with scientists based within our special partner Geosciences organisation “Geoverbund ABC/J”. Details of Geoverbund network experts can be found on the Geoverbund website

Funds can be requested for a contribution towards collaborative research expenses (up to £1750) for novel and collaborative ideas that have a clear path to opportunities for building research networks and new funded research programmes.

In recognising the successes of our previous PECRE scheme, at least half of this scheme will be reserved for Early Career Researchers (ECRs), defined as those with 4 years of PhD completion.


Awards are available for up to 3 months. Activities can start any time after the award date, however the funds awarded MUST be claimed no later than 31 July 2021.

SAGES defines the start of the project as being any activity undertaken to progress the project, which includes planning a schedule of activities to be undertaken in the initial stages; it is not necessarily the date when the collaborative activities must have commenced.

Awards are available for up to 3 months.


The funding available is dependent upon the length of the planned collaborative activities.

Applicants may request up to maximum if £3500, including one-off travel (lasting up to 3 months) and including a maximum of £1750 for research expenses.

Travel can be conducted by all project participants which includes the applicant, the co-applicant and also members of their teams.



Opening date: 15th June 2020
Closing date: Open call, closes 15th March 2021
Funds claimed by: 31 July 2021


    The primary considerations are listed below. Successful application should be strong in all aspects:

  1. the research background of the applicant and co-applicant;
  2. the mutual benefit of the collaboration;
  3. the strength of the proposal;
  4. the potential contribution to the Scottish science base;
  5. the potential for long-term collaboration


All applications to the International Collaboration Scheme are reviewed and assessed by at least two members of the Research & Innovation Committee (RICom) who have the most appropriate scientific expertise using the criteria detailed above.

Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application by email six weeks after receipt of application.



The SAGES based scientist and/or project leader (the applicant) and the non-UK based scientist and/or project leader (the co-applicant) must have completed a PhD or have extensive experience at an equivalent level at the time of application.

The applicant and co-applicant must hold a permanent of fixed term contract for the duration of the award in their institution.

The applicant and co-applicant must be based in their respective countries/institutions at the time of application.

The applicant and co-applicant cannot be former colleagues or PhD student/supervisor.

Applicants are not permitted to submit more than one application per call.

Applications have to be new collaborations. This scheme is not intended to be used to extend an existing or recent project or collaboration.

Collaborations should be based on a single project.


Departmental support must be obtained by the applicant and co-applicant for the proposed exchange.
A letter of support must be attached to the electronic application from:

  • The applicants Head of Department
  • The co-applicants Head of Department
  • It is recommended that the Departmental support should be completed at least 5 working days before the submission deadline to ensure there is sufficient time for organisational approval.


    Please complete the application form, you will not be able to submit the form unless all fields and all required supporting documents are attached.

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