SBO - Strategic Basic Research


The focus of strategic basic research is on innovative research which, if successful, will create prospects for economic or societal applications.

The SBO programme breaks down into two finality parts

  • Economic finality: The goal is economic valorisation where the research results are to be transferred to economic stakeholders.
  • Societal finality: The goal is societal valorisation where the research results are to be transferred to societal stakeholders (departments of the government, social profit sector, ...).

The funding percentage is 100%. As a guideline the budget of an SBO project is around 1,7 million euro.

Duration is 4 years.


  • At least one Flemish research center (university college, university, strategic research centers, Flemish scientific institutions,...)
  • Non Flemish research centers: possible if necessary for the project
  • Demonstrate the interaction with the user group (before, during and after the project)

Economic finality:

  • The user group consists of companies
  • When transfer of valorisation to existing companies: a user group, with the commitment to pay a user fee

Societal finality:

  • The user group consists of societal actors, without financial contribution
  • Part of the budget can be used for personnel with a primary valorisation task for the research results


  • Presubmission: 15 September, with at least: full composition of the project consortium, summary of scientific and valorisation goals,  choice of the research topic and thematic SBO-expert panel and experts to be avoided.
  • Final submission: 29 September (17:00)

Digitally: via FWO e-portal

The language of the proposal is English.

The evaluation will be on two levels:

  • On the scientific quality
  • On the valorisation potential, the valorisation strategy and the utilisation perspectives.

The applications are submitted to a number of international experts for a written evaluation. Afterwards the applicants will have the chance to formulate a written rebuttal, which will be added to the proposal as an addendum. This rebuttal phase takes place in January and the applicants have 7 working days to rebut.

The different score grids are available at the bottom of this web page.

Submit with Ghent University?

Researchers at Ghent University who wish to submit an SBO project can get support from the Research Department. This support can be on the fit in the programme, the valorisation potential, feedback on the proposal, help with the budget, ...

Contact Karen Curé from TechTransfer ( for an intake.


    • Send us the SBO budget file with your budget (to be downloaded from the FWO e-loket)
    • Or contact us () for advice on the budget, staff costs, costs for equipment, ...


    A list of approved projects is published on the website of FWO in May. Approved projects will start on 1 October.

    Every year 15-20 projects get funded.

    More information


        Ghent University - Research co-ordination Office

        Ghent University - TechTransfer Office

        • Karen Curé, 09 264 99 64