Europlanet Funding Scheme FAQs

Europlanet Funding Scheme FAQs

Who can apply?

Anyone can apply that wants to run an outreach activity in a country that is participating in the Europlanet Research Infrastructure or Society or in a member state of the EU.  The outreach activity must be linked to planetary science.

Europlanet will only be able to make a payment to an organisation that has audited accounts.  If you are an individual or do not have audited accounts, you should team up with an organisation that does.


How much can I apply for?

In the 2023 edition, Europlanet will be awarding grants of between 1 000 and 5 000 Euros.  You will need to include a detailed breakdown of your budget and a timeline showing project milestones in your application.

Please note that Europlanet only has limited funding available per round. Although you can apply for the full amount, successful applicants may be offered a reduced amount if there are other strong applications that Europlanet also wishes to fund.


What are the aims of Europlanet in setting up the funding scheme?

By setting up the funding scheme, Europlanet aims to:

  • Capitalise on the inspirational value of planetary science for many national audiences, including the general public, in order to attract young people in science.
  • Encourage planetary scientists to communicate their research to wider audiences and to discuss issues with non-specialists.
  • Provide funding for small novel, innovative or pilot projects which could be repeated across Europe or to provide partial support for larger projects.
  • Encourage partnerships, such as those between scientists and educators, industry and professional communicators.


What criteria will the judging panel use to assess applications?

Europlanet’s outreach objectives are to motivate and enable European planetary scientists to be involved with outreach activities, and to find innovative ways of raising the profile of Europe’s planetary science activities among its citizens.

The judging panel will therefore look positively on proposals that:

  • Are innovative in developing new ways of communicating planetary science subjects or engaging “hard-to-reach” audiences (e.g. teenagers, young adults) with planetary science.
  • Will reach audiences in more than one European country, especially those in EU Under-Represented States*
  • Will widen access to planetary science research (e.g. through citizen science projects, or by opening up access to facilities or experiments etc)
  • Will develop ongoing links between researchers and the wider community
  • Have a legacy beyond the funded period of the project
  • Will secure matched funding.


When can I apply?

The 2023 round of funding opens on the 3 May and closes on the 19 July 2023. The online application form can be accessed here.


What kind of projects has Europlanet funded in the past?

For full details of some of the projects funded, see the Case Studies. Below is a list summarising the projects funded to date.

In the 2022 round, Europlanet awarded a grant of:

  • 5,000 Euros for “Journey to the Planets”, a series of puppet theatre videos by IAGA-International Association of Geomagnetism and Aeronomy group at GFZ-Potsdam and Papa Vento.

In the 2021 round, Europlanet awarded grants to two projects:

  • 4,500 Euros for the “San Agustin Remote Observatory” in Cochabamba, which will provide remote-access to support astronomy outreach in Bolivia. The project is led by the San Agustin Educational Foundation (FESA), Bolivia.
  • 1,500 Euros for the “ExoWorld Walk” through the Botanical Gardens of Cluj- Napoca, Romania, which aims to connect the surroundings to astrobiology and convey the message: ‘We are all special, there is no Planet B!’  

In the 2020 round, Europlanet awarded grants to four projects:

  • 8,000 Euros for “Amanar: A refuge in the Stars”, an outreach project to inspire the Sahrawi community through the wonders of our Universe and promote peace, mutual understanding and a sense of global citizenship under the same sky. The Amanar project is led by GalileoMobile.
  • 6,960 Euros for “Sense the Universe”, a project to create re-producable resources for home and school environments targeted at people with special educational needs (SEN)Sense the Universe is led by Cardiff University.
  • 5,000 Euros for MOMSTER: MObile Meteor STation for Education & outReach, a resource for STEM teachers in secondary schools to observe and to learn all about meteors and their impact on the Earth’s atmosphere and the planet. The MOMSTER project is led by the Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy (BIRA-IASB).

In the 2019 round, Europlanet awarded grants to four projects:

  • 7,500 Euros for the development of “Help your Alien – A Solar System Game”, led by Instituto de Astrofísica e Ciências do Espaço, Portugal.
  • 3,000 Euros for “Heritage in Space”, an online platform to share experiences, memories and contemporary observations of planetary spacecraft with ‘space-heritage’ significance, led by the Beyond the Earth Foundation (UK).
  • 6,000 Euros to develop a pilot episode of “Confessions of History… of science”, led by NCCR PlanetS, Bern University (Switzerland).
  • 3,500 Euros for the “Space Days 2019: Around the Moon” exhibition led by the Danish Astronautical Society, Denmark.

In the 2018 round, Europlanet awarded a grant of:

  • 7 500 Euros to the Connacht Schools Radio Telescope Network, to install eight radio telescopes in schools across the west of Ireland, led by NUI Galway (Ireland).

In the 2017 round, Europlanet awarded grants to two projects:

  • 10 000 Euros to ‘OpenPlanetaryMap – Places on Mars’, a mapping and social platform led by SpaceFrog Design (France).
  • 7 000 Euros to ‘Planets in Your Hands’ models of planetary surfaces led by National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (Greece).

In the 2016 round, Europlanet awarded a grant of:

  • 15 000 Euros to ‘Planets in a Room’ to prototype and develop a simple, low-cost, self-build spherical projector for planetary data, led by SpeakScience (Italy).

In the 2012/2013 round, Europlanet awarded grants to three projects:  

  • 6 000 Euros to ‘Gaming a better Environmental Understanding’, prototype games aimed at teenagers, adults and the visually impaired, led by Astrosphere New Media Association (US/Portugal).
  • 8 000 Euros to the ‘NEO Search Campaign’ led by IASC Data Reduction Team (Slovakia/Italy), NUCLIO (Portugal)
  • 6 000 Euros for ‘Meet our neighbours! – A tactile experience’, led by NUCLIO (Portugal).

In the 2011/2012 round, Europlanet awarded grants to three projects:  

  • 7 500 Euros for ‘Back into the Future – Observing the Transit of Venus Now and Then’ films led by Széchenyi István Gimnázium High School (Hungary).
  • 7 000 Euros for ‘Meteorology of Mars in Schools – weather stations’ led by CAB-INTA (Spain)
  • 5 700 Euros for ‘Virtual Planetary Globes / Children’s planetary maps‘, led by Eötvös Loránd University.

In the 2010/2011 round, Europlanet awarded grants to two projects:  

  • 12 000 Euros to the Virtual Mars Rover (VMR) Mars Life Challenge multiplayer game led by ABM Space (Poland).
  • 4 000 Euros to fund 3D tactile models of the Moon for the visually impaired for use in planetaria led by the University of Valencia.

In the 2009/2010 round, Europlanet awarded grants to two projects:

  • 10 000 Euros to ‘A Space Eyeful – a Virtual Microscope for Extraterrestrial Rocks‘, led by the Open University, UK
  • 5 000 Euros to The Rosetta Lander LEGO kit, led by Lightcurve Films (Portugal/Netherlands).


* Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia.

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