The High North Programme
Programme Document 2013–2018
The Norwegian High North Cooperation Programme in Education (hereafter referred to as the High North Programme) is a five- year programme for cooperation between Norwegian institutions of higher education and similar institutions in Canada, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Russia and the U.S.
The High North Programme contributes to the aims of the Government’s High North Strategy (2011-12).The High North Programme is funded by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) and administered by the Norwegian Centre for International Cooperation in Education (SIU). The total budget for the High North Programme is NOK 45 million from 2013-20181. Norwegian higher education institutions (HEIs) are invited to apply for funds related to higher education collaboration with institutions in Canada, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Russia, and the U.S. Projects should be based in academic cooperation and endorsed by the leadership of the institutions. The programme includes activities related to all three levels of higher education (Bachelor, Master and Ph.D.).
Higher education collaboration is the focus and priority of the call.
2. Aims and objectives
The overall goal of the High North Programme is to expand, strengthen and disseminate knowledge about or relevant to the High North. Much of what we consider to be knowledge relating to the High North concerns topics that are cross- border in nature, such as climate change, the environment, resources, transport/logistics, economy and issues relating to indigenous peoples.
The objectives of the High North Programme are:
to increase and strengthen higher education cooperation about matters relevant to the High North, between institutions in Norway and in Canada, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Russia, and the U.S. This includes increasing the number of jointly developed courses, programmes and degrees as well as increasing mobility of students and faculty
to develop strong and sustainable institutional partnerships in higher education and research
to strengthen the connection between higher education and research collaboration related to High North issues
to strengthen the links between higher education and the public and private sectors
3. Cooperation, commitment and responsibility
The High North Programme supports projects involving two or more institutions of higher education, minimum one Norwegian institution and one institution from one of the five countries included in the High North Programme. The Norwegian main partner should be the formal applying institution, and if support is granted, will be the contract partner to SIU.
If more than one institution in the partner countries participates, one HEI should be defined as the main partner institution. The cooperation between the participating institutions should be based on the principle of equality and must be characterized by transparency at all levels. The application should be developed jointly by the partner institutions.
A project may also involve cooperation with research institutes and non- governmental organizations, public agencies or private companies; in Norway or in the partner countries. The High North Programme funds should mainly be used for covering higher education institutions’ participation in the project, and for educational activities.
If central to the partnership; the network projects may also include one or more partner(s) from countries outside the main cooperation countries. However the main activities will have to take place in Norway or the partner countries (Canada, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Russia or the U.S.)
Projects should contribute to strengthening the institutional cooperation between the participating institutions, and thus include educational activities beyond cooperation between individual researchers and students.
4.1 Main partner institution in Norway:
Accredited Norwegian universities, specialised university institutions and university colleges as well as university colleges with individual study programmes accredited by NOKUT are eligible for participation in the High North Programme.
4.2 Main partner institution outside Norway:
The main partner in the project must be a recognised/accredited higher education institutions – private and public – in Canada, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Russia and the U.S. The main partner institution should provide education relevant to the project, and at a level comparable to what is offered at the partner institution in Norway.
4.3 Eligible areas of support
The Programme supports projects contributing to increased knowledge about or relevant to the High North. Applications within all academic fields and disciplines are welcome, as well as multidisciplinary projects and professional studies. The High North is defined as the circumpolar arctic, including the Barents region.
5. Project categories and financial frames
Applications in the following categories will be considered for support:
Long-term cooperation projects: between one or more institutions of higher education in the main cooperation countries and one or more institutions of higher education in Norway. The annual allocation per project will be up to NOK 500 000 (maximum NOK 2 000 000 in total)
Limited cooperation activities: Support may be given to the development of relations and cooperation between higher education institutions in Norway and the main cooperation countries through limited joint activities, such as workshops, seminars and study visits. Such activities may, but do not have to, aim for further development into a long-term collaborative project. Total allocation per project will be up to NOK 300 000 per project.
Support for preparatory visits: Support may be given for preparatory visits in order to develop an application with a partner in Japan or the Republic of Korea. Total allocation per preparatory visit will be up to NOK 70000.
The program aims to announce calls for applications for long term projects in 2013 and 2014 and limited cooperation in 20142.
6. Measures and activities:
Projects are encouraged to be creative in exploring measures and activities that will contribute to the aims of the High North Programme. Measures and activities funded through the programme include, but are not limited to:
6.1 Development of study courses/programmes/degrees
Development and implementation of new courses (intensive or regular), study programmes and degrees are supported by the High North Programme. The establishment of joint programmes is encouraged. The courses must include students and teachers from both the Norwegian and the main partner outside Norway. The courses should preferably give ECTS points and be recognised as part of the students’ degree.
6.2 Seminars and workshops
Joint seminars and workshops and similar activities involving both researchers and students from participating institutions are supported by the High North Programme.
6.3 Joint teaching and supervision
Guest lecturing and joint supervision of students at all levels.
6.4 Mobility of students and staff
Mobility of students and staff is supported. Mobility of students may include internships or work practice.
6.5 Publication and dissemination
Publication and dissemination of results from the projects are supported by the High North programme. Publication activities include publications of teaching materials, journal articles, etc.
The High North Programme may cover administrative overhead of seven per cent of the sub-total Budget. Salary is not compensated.
More details will be announced in the various calls for applications.
7. Guiding principles and selection criteria
The following set of principles and priorities should be considered when developing a proposal. The quality and relevance of the proposal in relation to the aims and objectives of the High North Programme as well as the guiding principles stated below will be basis for the selection of projects to be supported.
Project goals, expected results and feasibility:
The goals and activities of the proposed project should contribute to the aims of the High North Programme, it is a prerequisite that the project is relevant to the High North. The expected results must be clearly described. The proposal should describe how the planned activities contribute to the achievement of project goals. The planned activities should be time-bound and linked to the project budget.
Mobility: The proposal should describe strategies for targeted student and staff mobility. Mobility should preferably be two-way and the proposal should demonstrate how the planned mobility contributes to the achievement of the project goals. The project should aim at developing sustainable structures for student mobility.
Institutional commitment: All applications should include information on how the project relates to existing institutional strategies and priorities, and how it contributes to build or strengthen institutional partnerships. A letter of intent signed by academic leadership at the main partner institution in the partner country should be included in the application.
Connection between research and education: If relevant, the project should demonstrate links between ongoing or planned research and the proposed education activities, and the added value of combining the two aspects. Expected synergies should be explained.
Long-term perspective and risk analysis: Reflections on the completion of the project, and how the institutional partnership will be sustained beyond the funding period should be included. Possible risk factors such as recruitment of students and staff, time constraints, language and cultural barriers should be identified and discussed, and mitigation measures should be reflected on.
8. Application procedures
Interested institutions should submit applications to SIU, jointly prepared by the collaborating institutions. All proposals must include objectives, activities, work plans, budget requirements and reflections on the sustainability and risk factors of the project/cooperation.
The application must be submitted online in SIU’s online system for applications and reporting, Espresso. The application form and guidelines will be available at the time of the call for proposals. Deadlines will be announced in the call.
9. Selection procedures
All proposals submitted within the deadline for applications will be processed as follows:
1. Document control, eligibility check and formal verification of applications
2. Assessment of each application by external experts for projects exceeding NOK 300 000
3. SIU internal assessment of applications
4. Final selection of applications by the allocation committee for projects exceeding NOK 300 000
The selection of projects will be based on the selection criteria presented in part 7. The thematic and geographic composition of the total High North Programme portfolio will be taken into account.
Complaints will be handled according to SIU’s Complaint Regulations, which are found at www.siu.no.
Institutions that are granted support from the High North Programme are jointly responsible for the implementation and monitoring of activities and projects. Annual progress reports and a final report should be submitted to SIU using the online reporting facility Espresso. SIU is responsible for reporting to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.