National Research Programmes NRP

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The National Research Programmes are the federal government’s research funding tool to support research projects that develop knowledge useful to guiding decisions and practices – and thereby contribute to solving current challenges. At the request of the Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research (EAER), the Federal Council periodically decides which topics should be addressed in new NRPs and the budget for each. NRPs usually run for around five years. Since the instrument was first introduced, almost 80 NRPs have been launched, covering a wide range of themes.

Latest programme: NRP 80 ‘Covid-19 in society’

On 28 April, the Federal Council launched a new National Research Programme entitled ‘ Covid-19 in society’ and tasked the Swiss National Science Foundation with conducting the programme (see press release in German). The SNSF will launch a call for project proposals for NRP 80 in early autumn 2021. Questions regarding proposal submissions should be addressed to the SNSF directly.

Contact SNSF:
Dr Stefan Husi, Programmes Division/Programme Manager,, +41 31 308 23 43

Information about NRP 79 ‘Advancing 3R – Animals, Research and Society’

On 3 February, the Federal Council launched the National Research Programme entitled ‘Advancing 3R – Animals, Research and Society’ and tasked the Swiss National Science Foundation with conducting the programme (see press release in German).

The National Research Programme 78 ‘Advancing 3Rs – Animals, Research and Society‘ aims to reduce the number of animal experiments in scientific research and, as  a result, the number of laboratory animals used. It also aims to minimize the constraints on laboratory animals during experiments and their keeping. In addition, this NRP will address the ethical, legal, societal, cultural and economic aspects of animal experimentation.

Researchers can submit proposals directly to the SNSF until 3 August 2021. Detailed information on the conditions for taking part and how projects are selected can be found in the call document (see the SNSF website).

Any questions on submitting projects should be addressed directly to the SNSF (contact; +41 31 308 23 79).

Information about NRP 78 ‘Covid-19’

On 16 April 2020, the Federal Council launched the national research programme (NRP 78 ‘Covid-19’, devoted to the coronavirus pandemic, and tasked the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) with implementing it (see press release).

The NRP aims to capitalise and build on existing national research competencies, to channel and bundle them into more extensive projects. At the same time, the NRP ‘Covid-19’ is intended to ensure coordination with upcoming special measures at the international level.

The NRP focuses on the following specific areas:

  • biology, immunology, immunopathology of SARS-CoV-2;
  • new approaches in epidemiology and disease prevention;
  • clinical characterization and management of SARS-CoV-2;
  • advance and development of novel vaccines and innovative diagnostics for reliable proof of SARS-CoV-2.

Researchers showed considerable interest in the call for project proposals for NRP 78 ‘Covid-19’, submitting a total of 190 applications to the SNSF (see their press release) by 10 June 2020.

In August 2020 the SNSF completed the evaluation of project proposals and approved a total of 28 research projects (see press release SNSF).

The projects now receiving funding reflect the thematic breadth of NRP 78. The projects can be found in the project database on Covid-19 research in Switzerland.

SNSF's Covid-19 research project registry

Contact SNSF:
Dr Pascal Walther, Programmes Division/Programme Manager,, +41 31 308 22 26

What process is used to select topics?

After State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation (SERI) has opened a new selection round, interested parties 1 can submit proposals for new NRP topics. The topics for new NRPs will be selected through a bottom-up process.



  1. SERI opens NRP selection round (generally without any thematic guidelines).
  2. Interested parties can submit topic proposals to SERI.
  3. After examining the proposals, the SERI formulates possible NRP topics and clarification questions and forwards these to the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) to assess feasibility.
  4. SNSF develops concepts for NRP proposals deemed feasible.
  5. Based on these NRP concepts, the Federal Council decides, at the EAER's request, which NRPs will be launched along with the corresponding budget allocations.
  6. SERI (EAER) commissions the SNSF to prepare tender documents following the Federal Council's decision.
  7. SERI approves tender documents.
  8. SNSF issues call for NRP proposals.
  9. Researchers may submit their NRP proposals to the SNSF. Project proposals go through the due diligence procedure based on SNSF standards.
1 O-RIPA, article 4 paragraph 1: Federal offices and any natural or legal person may propose topics for NRP to the SERI.

Next NRP assessment round (advance information)

The key dates in the next assessment round will be published on this website at a later date.

Current National Research Programmes

NRP number National Research Programmes NRP
NRP 80 Covid-19 in society
NRP 79 Advancing 3R – Animals, Research and Society
NRP 78 Covid-19
NRP 77 Digital Transformation
NRP 76 Welfare and Coercion - Past, Present and Future
NRP 75 Big data
NRP 74 Smarter Health Care
NRP 73 Sustainable economy
NRP 72 Antimicrobial Resistance

Concluded National Research Programmes

NRP  number National Research Programmes NRP
NRP 71 Managing Energy Consumption
NRP 70 Energy Turnaround
NRP 69 Healthy Nutrition and Sustainable Food Production
NRP 68 Sustainable Use of Soil as a Resource
NRP 67 End of Life
NRP 66 Resource Wood
NRP 65 New Urban Quality
NRP 64 Opportunities and Risks of Nanomaterials
NRP 63 Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine
NRP 62 Smart Materials
NRP 61 Sustainable water management
NRP 60 Gender Equality
NRP 59 Benefits and Risks of the Deliberate Release of Genetically Modified Plants
NRP 58 Religions, the State and Society
NRP 57 "Non-Ionising Radiation - Health and Environment"
NRP 56 Language diversity and competences in Switzerland
NRP 54 Sustainable Development of the Built Environment
NRP 53 Musculoskeletal Health - Chronic Pain
NRP 52 Childhood, Youth and Intergenerational Relationships in a Changing Society
NRP 51 Social Integration and Social Exclusion
NRP 50 Endocrine Disruptors: Relevance to Humans, Animals and Ecosystems
NRP 49 Antibiotic resistance
NRP 48 Landscapes and Habitats of the Alps
NRP 47 Supramolecular Functional Materials
NRP 46 Implants and Transplants
NRP 45 Future Problems of the Welfare State
NRP 44 Energy: Socio-economic Research in the Consumer Domain
NRP 43 Formation and Employment
NRP 42+ Relations between Switzerland and South Africa
NRP 42 Foreign Policy
NRP 41 Transport and Environment: Interactions Switzerland - Europe
NRP 40+ Right-wing Extremism -Causes and Counter-measures
NRP 40 Violence in Daily Life and Organized Crime
NRP 39 Migration and Intercultural Relations
NRP 38+ Pathogenesis of novel forms of infectious diseases
NRP 38 Diseases of the Nervous System
NRP 37 Somatic Gene Therapy
NRP 36 Nanosciences
NRP 35 Social and Legal Status of Women - Ways to Equality
NRP 34 Complementary Medicine
NRP 33 Effectiveness of our Education Systems
NRP 32 Ageing
NRP 31 Climatic Changes and Natural Hazards
NRP 30 High Temperature Supraconductivity
NRP 29 Changes of Life Style and Social Security
NRP 28 Switzerland in a Changing World: Challenge for Foreign Trade and Development Politics
NRP 27 Efficiency of Governmental Actions
NRP 26 Man, Health and Environment
NRP 25 City and Traffic
NRP 24 Chemistry and Physics on Surfaces
NRP 23 Artificial Intelligence and Robotics
NRP 22 Use of Land in Switzerland
NRP 21 Cultural Diversity and National Identity
NRP 20 Geological Deep Structure of Switzerland
NRP 19 Materials for Tomorrow's Needs
NRP 18 Biomedical Engineering
NRP 17 Alternative Methods to Experiments on Animals
NRP 16 Methods for Conservation of Objects of Cultural Value
NRP 15 World of Work: Humanisation and Technological Development
NRP 14 Circulation and Pollution of Air and Forest Damage in Switzerland
NRP 13 Research in Micro- and Opto-electronics
NRP 12 Wood as Renewable Raw Material and Energy Source
NRP 11 Safety Policy
NRP 10 Education and Acting in Society and Professional Life
NRP 09 Mechanisms and Development of Swiss Economy and their Social Consequences
NRP 08 Economy and Effectiveness of Swiss Health Care
NRP 07 Problems of Raw and Other Materials
NRP 06 Decision Processes in Swiss Democracy
NRP 05+ Man and Biosphere (MAB)
NRP 05 Regional Problems in Switzerland
NRP 04 Research and Development in the Domain of Energy
NRP 03 Problems of Social Integration in Switzerland
NRP 02 Fundamental Problems of Swiss Hydrologic Cycle
NRP 01 Cardio-vascular Diseases

Further information


SERI, Claudine Dolt
Scientific Advisor
National Research
T +41 58 462 78 38

Secretariat NRP
T +41 58 466 77 90

Print contact