How to apply

This page refers to proposing a COST Action. If you would like to join a running Action as a participant instead of proposing your own Action, please visit our page What are COST Actions?

How to apply

Proposals for new COST Actions can be submitted at any point in the year through the COST Open Call. Each Open Call has a deadline for submissions, once this deadline has been reached, all applications are evaluated based on clear criteria as outlined in the Submission, Evaluation, Selection and Approval (SESA) procedure.

Proposals for new Actions are bottom-up and can be on any topic, however they must fulfil certain criteria in order to be approved, such as including researchers from at least seven COST Members. 

Following a thorough evaluation and selection process, the decision for funding a proposal is taken by the COST Committee of Senior Officials (CSO) within eight months from the collection date. Successful proposals are approved to become COST Actions and can expect to kick-off within three months after approval.

The Open Call

Participants are invited to submit COST Action proposals contributing to the scientific, technological, economic, cultural or societal knowledge advancement and development of Europe. Multi- and interdisciplinary proposals are encouraged.

The Open Call Action proposal submission, evaluation, selection and approval (SESA) procedure is fully science and technology-driven and will ensure a simple, transparent and competitive proposal evaluation and selection process, reflecting the bottom-up, open and inclusive principles of COST.

Participants planning to submit a proposal for a COST Action will need to refer to the SESA guidelines and to the Open Call Announcement on the Documents and Guidelines page.

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Evaluation, selection and approval

COST is committed to a transparency and simplicity. The proposal evaluation and selection follows a three-step process:

Evaluation by independent external experts

Step 1

Revision and quality check of consensus reports by ad hoc review panels

Step 2

Establishment of a shortlist of selected proposals by the COST Scientific Committee (SC)

Step 3

The shortlist of proposals selected by the Scientific Committee is submitted to the COST Committee of Senior Officials (CSO) for approval.

Proposals are evaluated and selected on a competitive basis, taking into account the available funds for the particular Open Call collection. COST reserves the right to involve observers to assess and provide feedback on the evaluation and selection process.

More details about the COST selection process can be found in the SESA guidelines in Documents and guidelines. For any questions related to the open call, please contact

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