SONATA: PhD holder grants (2-7 years after PhD award)

SONATA is a funding opportunity intended to support the Principal Investigator in conducting innovative basic research, using advanced research equipment and/or an original methodology.

  • SONATA 16 - open until December 15th, 2020
  • SONATA 15 – open until December 16th, 2019
  • SONATA 14 – open until December 17th, 2018
  • SONATA 13 – closed on September 15th, 2017

Principal Investigator: researchers who have had their PhD conferred within 2 to 7 years prior to the submission of proposals.

Projects carried out by research teams must consist of  no more than one researcher holding a habilitation degree or the title of professor and on condition that they are collaborators from an institution other than the host institution of the Principal Investigator.

Duration: 12, 24 or 36 months


Researchers may apply for funding of costs relevant necessary and directly connected to the proposed research, including:

  • Personnel (including scholarships pre-doctoral researchers and post-doc positions)
  • Costs of reduced obligatory teaching load: the entity that employs the principal investigator under a full-time employment contract may be provided with funding to cover the reduction by 50% of the obligatory teaching load of the principal investigator;
  • Consumables
  • Research equipment: up to 500 000 PLN for projects in the fields of life sciences or physical sciences and engineering; up to 150 000 PLN in the field of arts, humanities and social sciences
  • Travel and subsistence costs
  • Outsourcing
  • Other: publication costs, collective investigators, devices and software, etc.
  • Indirect costs: up to 20%; additionally, indirect costs of up to 2% of direct costs may be spent on open access to publications and research data.

There is no cap on funding for an individual project.

Evaluation criteria:

  • proposals from within NCN Panels, involving basic research,
  • scientific quality and the innovative nature of the research project,
  • scientific qualifications of the principal investigator (the principal investigator’s research achievements, evaluation of the results of research projects conducted by the principal investigator funded from the budget for science)
  • impact on the development of the research discipline,
  • relevance of the costs planned,
  • preparation of the proposal 

Evaluation procedure: merit-based evaluation by peer review panels and external reviewers in two stages

Application: written partly in Polish and partly in English

Call timeline


Tel: 0048 12 341 9000