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Short Term Scientific Missions

The Short Term Scientific Missions (STSM) are exchange visits which aim to strengthen the existing research networks. They allow scientists to go to an institution or laboratory in another COST country, to foster collaboration, to learn new techniques, to take measurements using instruments or methods not available in their own institution or laboratory.The STSM involve visiting another country in the COST network and/or hosting a researcher from another COST country for between one week and 3 months and are predominantly aimed at PhD students and Early Career Researchers within the network.

Who can apply?
Applicants should normally be engaged in a programme of research as a postgraduate student or postdoctoral fellow and be employed in an institution of a COST Country which has accepted the Memorandum of Understanding and is actively participating in the COST Action.

To apply for an STSM please follow the guidelines and the application process for COST Actions.

In addition to the general COST rules the applicant should submit the following documents:

  • CV - one A4 maximum
  • Publication list
  • Description of the project (max. 4 pages)
  • Home institution release form
  • Host institution letter of invitation
  • Financial declaration on additional income during the grant

The application process
Applications for STSM can be submitted for consideration by the Executive Committee during a specified period each year (see 2013 timeframe). The Committee will monitor the grants applied for and the amount of money spent and therefore may close the call for applications at its discretion with no further notice.

1) After liaising with the institute you wish to visit or with the Chair of a Working Group please submit the required documents using the website link.

The Executive Committee will then consider all applications and you will be contacted by the STSM Coordinator. Final approval of all STSMs is required from the Action Chair.

2) Applicants should then use the link to the e.COST registration tool and complete the online STSM application forms
least 4 weeks prior to commencement of the STSM.

This requires entering dates for the STSM, addresses for the institutions involved, estimated travel costs  & the banking details (IBAN and SWIFT codes) of the applicant. The system will then generate a form which has to be downloaded and sent by the applicant electronically to the host institution and copied to STSM Coordinator. Please add a CV and any relevant supporting documents advised by the STSM Coordinator or Working Group Chair.

3) Once the Chair has approved the grant the STSM Coordinator will inform the Grant Holder and the Applicant will then receive a grant letter  in which s/he is formally informed of the approval of the STSM and the level of the financial grant given. Please note that a fixed grant is made, in line with COST regulations, and that this is paid after the STSM has been completed.

4) The Applicant must then sign, scan and return this acceptance letter by email to ibrumaru(at)

5) On completion of the research a short report must be completed within 4 weeks (guidance will be given by the academics overseeing the STSM). The grant will then be paid directly into the bank account which has been entered onto the e.cost system.

Type of STSM grants available under the BM1201 COST action for 2013

  • 6 grants with 3 months stay (each 2500 EUR)
  • 4 grants with 1 month stay (each 1000 EUR)
  • 2 grants with short 1-2 week stay (each 500 EUR)

Rules of Consideration
Your application will be reviewed by the Executive Committee. The reviewing process will examine that the application is relevant to the aims of the Action and will ensure homogeneous distribution among countries, working groups and gender and avoid overcrowding of single laboratories.

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