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About FCT

What we do, in numbers

Funding for Science

A breakdown of FCT funding per area of activity from 2010 to 2015 is represented below.

FCT Budget and Funding 2010-2015 (million euro)

FCT’s investment in science (as measured by budget execution) dropped between 2010 (€469million) and 2011 (€410million). Two key areas were particularly affected by this drop: R&D project grants and R&D Centres. In 2012 the priority to recover this reduction and contribute to relieve the serious treasury problems felt by the institutions that manage FCT funded projects was set out. This has been partially achieved: investment in R&D projects and R&D Units has been rising since 2011, leading to more well-adjusted funding across FCT’s areas of activity.

Research Projects Grants

FCT holds regular calls for R&D project grants in all scientific domains, in addition to calls in specific scientific areas.
There are around 4 000 active projects, representing €500million of awarded funding and an investment of about €90million/year (average for 2010-2015).

Graduate Education and Training

FCT supports around 9 000 PhD students, Post-Doctoral researchers and researchers at other stages in their career through studentships and fellowships, representing an investment of €150million/year (average for 2010-2015).

Career Development

The FCT Investigator Programme aims to recruit 1 000 outstanding researchers by 2016. To date, in three calls, 597 FCT Investigators have been selected.
Investment in career development (FCT Investigator, Programa Ciência and Welcome II Programme) is estimated at €45million/year (average for 2010-2015).

Research Centres

FCT funding for R&D Units and Associate Laboratories amounts to an average of €60 million/year (for 2010-2015).
Current funding encompasses 257 R&D Units, hosting close to 14 000 PhD holders, and representing an annual funding of €77 million, for 2015 to 2020. Amongst these R&D Units, 11 were graded as Exceptional and 60 as Excellent, in the last international peer-review assessment.

International Cooperation

FCT coordinates international partnerships with American universities, secures the participation of Portuguese scientists in international research programmes, via bilateral and multilateral agreements, as well as the national contributions to international organisations (such as CERN, ESA, ESO and EMBO) - an investment of around €50 million/year (2010-2015 average).

Information Society

FCT fosters inclusion in Information and Communications Technology (ICT), the creation and transfer of knowledge and emerging technologies, strengthening e-infrastructures and the internationalisation of the sector, at an investment of around €600 thousand/year (2012-2015 average, since FCT took on UMIC’s responsibilities).

B-on and the Science, Technology and Society Network

At a €15 million/year average investment (2012 to 2015), FCT provides funding for the online scientific library B-on, and the management and operation of the Science Technology and Society Network, an infrastructures for high performance communications that provides services to research centres across the country.

Other types of support - Scientific Community and Scientific Culture

FCT supports scientific meetings, publications and provides travel grants, as well as the public understanding of science, at around €1.8 million/year (2010-2015 average).

(Last updated: February 2016)