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SUMERNET 4 All Rapid Response Research Grant

This grant will fund research that will provide evidence that directly contributes to ongoing planning or decision-making processes at national or regional levels, which address challenges being faced and help reduce water insecurities for the poor, marginalized and socially vulnerable groups of women and men in the Mekong Region. 

The research priorities of this call are aligned with three research themes of SUMERNET 4 All below:

1. Water access, rights, and allocation in times of water insecurity. 

2. Governance and management of water-related disaster risks.

3. Transboundary interactions with water systems. 

Expedited timelines apply throughout the process to ensure delivery meets rapid response needs. It is expected that contracting and start-up of successful project is equally expedited. The research project leader and team members are required to treat the award(s) arising from the call with urgency. 

In this round, funding support will not exceed 400,000 SEK (~US$ 45,000) per research project to be completed within 6-12 months. For this round of call, not more than four grants will be awarded in 2021.

Detailed call document and templates can be found at: https://www.sumernet.org/blog/preview/a-call-for-expression-of-interest-eoi-for-its-rapid-response-grants-apply-before-deadline-20th-september.

Details of this call

The format of applications is based on a shortened version of the well-established SUMERNET 4 All collaborative research funding instrument. We emphasize that applications with involvement of policymakers and planners, practitioners and marginalized women and men are particularly welcome, as are those lead or co-lead by women.

Successful applications will have to fulfil the following aspects:

  1. Addressing current challenges on water insecurity of significant importance for the Mekong Region, in line with at least one of the above research themes of SUMERNET 4 All.
  2. Providing evidence that directly contributes to ongoing planning or decision-making processes at national or regional levels to help reduce water insecurities for the poor, marginalized and socially vulnerable groups of women and men in the Mekong Region.
  3. Rapid response research covers the whole of the Mekong Region or at least two countries as the study area.
  4. A multidisciplinary research approach that includes gender and social equality, human rights, conflict sensitivity, and governance and poverty reduction as key targets.
  5. Engagement with a diverse group of team members in the project that represent diverse genders, ages, races and are at different stages in their research career is an advantage, especially if the project has a female lead.
  6. End beneficiaries of this rapid response research are the marginalized and most vulnerable groups in the Mekong Region.
  7. Lead agency and Team Leader have extensive experience and proven capacity to manage the grant that engages with interdisciplinary experts in water sector for the Mekong Region.
  8. Project team has proven experience and expertise to carry out the proposed rapid research.
  9. Including realistic activities that could be implemented and completed within the proposed project period even though the pandemic may continue in the region.
  10. Providing letter of support or request from target user(s) of future research findings to certify that there is a real need for this research while not compulsory will certainly be an advantage. 

Who can apply?

Lead Applicant (LA) needs to demonstrate that she/he has the skills, knowledge and support necessary to direct the proposed research and to be actively engaged in carrying the research through its completion. The LA will need to show appropriate evidence of expertise and experience matched to the nature and context of research project. LA must be a formal SUMERNET network member. (You can apply to be a SUMERNET network member if you have not registered as network member yet using this link: http://bit.ly/sumernetmembers). 

If lead organization has prior experience in receiving the grant(s) from SUMERNET or other programmes of SEI, the application would be an advantage. However, they will need to demonstrate that their project team can perform the activities specified in the application, without impacting the work earlier committed with SUMERNET or related ongoing tasks in their organizations.

Project team members could be the experts from SUMERNET network or other networks.

How to apply?

The Expression of Interest (EoI) form (available at this link) must be completed to ensure eligibility. Reference is made in the form to SUMERNET website where information on the programme’s goal, objectives and priority themes, as well as operating approach, boundary partners, capacity development etc. is made. Please refer to this when submitting the EoI.

All applications must submit an Expression of Interest and supporting documents using this online submission platform. Email submissions will not be accepted.

Important dates

  • Launch of the call: 23 July 2021
  • Deadline of EoI submission: 20 September 2021
  • EoI review: 21 September - 8 October 2021
  • Anticipated dates of announcement: 18 - 20 October 2021


To submit, please complete the following online submission form.


We use Submittable to accept and review our submissions.