The Research and Innovation Foundation (RIF), would like to inform all interested researchers, about the updating of the submission and evaluation procedure of applications for the participation in COST (European Co-operation in Science and Technology) Actions, as well as in the relevant rules of COST and the national participation rules.
The new procedure shall apply from the 9th August 2021.
Specifically, the application form for the nomination of Delegates in Management Committees of COST Actions has been updated and is available here: Application, while the document summarising the national rules, criteria and obligations of Delegates is available here: Criteria/General Rules/Obligations. The submission of applications will be done via IRIS, even though until it is available, applications can be submitted via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org. The changes reflect a need for simplification or adjustment based on the needs of the research community of Cyprus, as documented during the past years, as well as a need to adjust to new rules recently announced by the COST Association.
Among the main changes of the COST Association rules, are changes related to the nomination of Substitutes that from now on will not be done by COST National Coordinators (CNCs), like RIF. Instead, CNCs will only nominate Delegates for participation in Management Committees of COST Actions, and then each Delegate can select a Substitute among the participants of Working Groups of their Action, coming from the same country, for a specific time period (up to 6 months) or for a specific event or activity.
Another important change, concerns the nomination of Delegates, that from now on apart from the positive examination of their application by RIF, will also need the tacit validation from the Management Committee (MC) of the Action, if the 1st meeting of the MC has already taken place.
It is also important that the countries will no longer sign the Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) of the Actions in which the nominate Delegates, but it will be considered that all countries accept all MoUs from the time of their approval by the COST Committee of Senior Officials. Consequently, Working Group members will be able to participate in any COST Action, irrespective of whether their country has nominated Delegates. In this way COST Actions become more open and accessible.
As far as the national rules are concerned, a major change concerns the obligation of applicants to hold a permanent position in an organisation based in the Republic of Cyprus or having a contract that covers the duration of the COST Action. In order to allow more early career researchers to participate in COST Actions, in their case they will need to prove they have a contract with an organisation in the Repubic of Cyprus, irrespective of the contract’s duration, at the time of the application submission, as most of them usually have annual contracts. The Early Career Investigators will need to inform RIF for changes in their employment status during the duration of the COST Action (e.g. if they leave the country), in order to make sure that they continue to be active in research and in the country and retain the right to represent the country in the COST Action.