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Open Research Area (ORA) for the Social Sciences

ORA is based on an agreement between the Agence Nationale de la Recherche (ANR; France), the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG; Germany), the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC; UK) and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC; Canada).

In order to strengthen international co-operation in the field of social sciences, wishing to fund high quality scientific research within their own countries, and aware that some of the best research can be delivered by working with the best researchers internationally, ANR, DFG, ESRC and SSHRC are launching a sixth ORA call for proposals in order to fund the best joint research projects in the social sciences. The scheme will provide funding for integrated projects by researchers coming from at least three of the four subscribing countries – in any combination of three or more countries. Please note that the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO; Netherlands) will not be participating in this sixth ORA Call - for further information see their website in
Dutch and in English.

Proposals may be submitted in any area of the social sciences. However, the disciplinary coverage varies according to the involvement of the national agencies. Applicants who are uncertain of whether their proposal would be eligible should contact the relevant national agencies for clarification.

There is again a special opportunity for cooperation with projects in Japan. With the aim to strengthen cooperation between researchers in Japan and ORA partners, the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) as the national funding organization of Japan renews the funding scheme to support projects which are associated with ORA. For details please see the JSPS website for the Japanese call.

To date five rounds of ORA have been successfully completed, funding over 60 international collaborative proposals. Information on which projects were funded in previous calls is available in the download area below.

This call will follow a two-stage procedure consisting of an outline proposal and a full proposal. Applicants who are successful at outline will automatically progress to full stage. Unlike the previous round, applicants will be invited to submit outline and full proposals at the same time, rather than waiting for the results of the outline stage.

Funding will be distributed among the national agencies according to the place of work of the researchers, and according to the funding rules of each agency.

How to Apply

ESRC is the coordinating agency for this round. All proposals for this call will be submitted through the ESRC’s Joint Electronic Submissions system (Je-S). For detailed guidance on how to submit proposals please refer to the ORA sixth call Je-S Guidance for Applicants.

Deadline for the submission of proposals is 16.00 (UK time) on 11 September 2019. Proposals submitted after the deadline will not be accepted. Electronic acknowledgement will be sent to the Main Applicant and the submitting organisation.

Applicants requesting funding from DFG are required to also submit their proposal to
elan. Deadline for the submission in elan is 18 September 2019.

Call documents

The full specification and other important guidance documents can be found on the ESRC website:

  • Call Specification
  • Je-S Guidance for Applicants
  • Frequently Asked Questions (Note: this document may be updated to reflect questions frequently raised with the ESRC while the call is open and should be checked regularly)
  • Je-S Application Checklist

The templates below must be downloaded and submitted, in addition to the mandatory attachments, as set out in the Je-S Guidance for Applicants:

  • Former submissions and resubmissions template (optional - if applicable, three pages of A4, Outline proposal only)
  • Project participants (mandatory, no page limit, Outline and Full proposals)
  • Total budget and a short summary of costs (mandatory, no page limit, Outline and Full proposals)
  • ESRC National Financial Form (mandatory, Full proposal only)
  • SSHRC National Financial Form (mandatory, Full proposal only)

For further details on submitting financial information for ANR and DFG please refer to the Call’s Specification.

Webinar for potential applicants

We will hold a webinar for potential applicants to this call on 3 July 2019 which we strongly encourage you to attend. The webinar will be open to participants from around the world, and will provide information and guidance from the funders on the requirements of the call as well as an opportunity for questions and answers. To allow for different time zones we will be holding two identical webinars at 10.00 (UK time) and 15.00 (UK time), which will each last approximately one hour.

Spaces will be limited, so we encourage you to register your interest early to avoid disappointment by emailing Link auf E-Mailoraqueries@esrc.ukri.org. When registering your interest please indicate whether you wish to join the morning or afternoon webinar, and we would ask those in UK and European time zones to be flexible where possible. Registration for the webinars will close on 21 June 2019.

The main source of information for this call is the homepage of the call secretariat ESRC. You will find all relevant information on the call, including the necessary templates and forms on the ESRC website.

DFG-specific information:

Download Area:


Germany, DFG:

France, ANR:

United Kingdom, ESRC:

If you have any queries relating to the Je-S System the Je-S Helpdesk can be contacted by

All other queries relating to this call should be directed to the call secretariat:

Canada, SSHRC: