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Research in Sweden

Research in Sweden

The sky is the limit!

Research in Sweden

Sweden is among the nations worldwide that devote the most money to research relative to its population. Sweden's expenditures for R&D is total 3.26% of GDP.

The business sector accounts for around 70 percent and the higher education sector for 27% of this spending. Companies largely fund their own research, but receive some contributions from the government and abroad.

Public sector research funding

The public sector finances R&D through grants paid directly to higher education institutions (HEIs) and through support for research councils and sectoral research agencies. In addition, several research foundations have been started with public funds, providing research funding in excess of SEK 1.2 billion annually.

The Swedish Parliament grants R&D funds in all of the ministries' spheres of responsibility. The Minister for Higher Education and Research is responsible for overall coordination of research policy in the Government Offices. By far the greatest share of publicly funded research in Sweden is conducted in HEIs. Research institutes account for only a small share, which distinguishes Sweden by international comparison.

The information above and much more regarding research in Sweden is to be found at the website of the Swedish Research Council, a public agency under the authority of the Ministry of Education and Research,

Useful links:

The Swedish system of research funding

The Swedish Research Barometer, the Swedish research system in international comparison. 

The Swedish Higher Education Authority. Information about Higher Education Institutions in Sweden and a list of university colleges, universities and independent higher education providers.

Government agencies


The Swedish Research Council

The Swedish Research Council (Vetenskapsrådet) is Sweden’s largest governmental research funding body, and supports research within all scientific fields. All grants are regularly announced on the web page




Sweden´s Innovation Agency (Vinnova) is a government research council for innovation. Vinnova funds research and innovation projects. You find all calls at





Formas is a government research council for sustainable development. Formas funds research within fields of environment, agricultural sciences and spatial planning. You find all calls at



Forte is a government research council for funding research on health, working life and welfare. Forte funds research within three main fields: health, working life and welfare. You find all calls at


How to apply

Generally researchers submit their applications to the respective Swedish funding agencies on their own. Applications should normally be approved / signed by a Head of Department. Read more by following the links, what applies for the different funding agencies and about current open calls.

Grants are normally awarded for several types of activities, such as projects grants, junior researcher grants, postdoc grants, visiting professors, workshops, etc. Each funding agency specifies which grants will be available.

Forte, Formas and the Swedish Research Council use a common application system, Prisma, for the applications. For applications in Prisma you must be employed by an approved administrating organisation in Sweden during the grant period. Who is an approved organisation will be shown in Prisma and further information is available on the respective funding agency’s web page.


Other funding



RISE Research Institutes of Sweden

RISE is an independent, State-owned research institute, which offers unique expertise and over 100 testbeds and demonstration environments for future-proof technologies, products and services.