Funding for Scientific Research 2020/2021

With the aim of encouraging research into the healthy human being, both from the physical and spiritual point of view and particularly in fields largely still unexplored but which warrant further scientific analysis, BIAL Foundation now opens a Grants programme for Scientific Research with the following characteristics:

  1. 1. Scope and purpose - Only the fields of Psychophysiology and Parapsychology shall be covered by this programme. The goals to be met by the applicants shall be set out by the Research Project under application.
  2. 2. Addressees - All scientific researchers will be admitted as applicants, either individually or in groups, except those working for BIAL Foundation or for any of the companies belonging to BIAL Group. The current Grant Holders of BIAL Foundation can also be admitted as applicants; however, they shall only benefit from new grants under this programme after the successful completion of the work comprised in the scope of previous awarded grants.
  3. 3. Duration and commencement - The total duration of the grants shall not exceed 3 years and shall commence between 1st of January and 31st of October 2021.
  4. 4. Total amount and payment’s periodicity - The approved applications shall benefit from grants in total amounts comprised between €5,000 and €50,000. The specific amount shall be fixed at BIAL Foundation’s sole discretion in accordance with the needs of the Research Project under application.
    The amount awarded to each Research Project shall be understood as a maximum amount, which shall be paid by BIAL Foundation upon verification of the documents of expenses submitted.
    The payments shall be made annually or bi-annually. This periodicity shall be defined in accordance with the schedule of the Research Project.
  1. 5. Applications - Applications should be submitted in English no later than 31st of August 2020, in accordance with the Regulation of Grants for Scientific Research of BIAL Foundation, via the Bial Foundation Grants Management System (BF-GMS). Applications of projects from Clinical or Experimental Models of Human Disease and Therapy shall not be accepted.
  2. 6. Assessment of applications and disclosure of results - Applications shall be assessed by the Scientific Board of BIAL Foundation. The decision shall be disclosed, by notice to the applicants, within 4 (four) months from the final deadline for submission of applications mentioned in the preceding section 5.
  3. 7. Applicable Regulation - The submission of an application implies the full acceptance by the applicant of the terms and conditions set out in this announcement and in the Regulation of Grants for Scientific Research of BIAL Foundation, which governs the present programme.

BIAL Foundation reserves the right to refuse the application of former Grant Holders who have repeatedly violated their legal and contractual obligations with BIAL Foundation.

The Regulation of Grants for Scientific Research of the BIAL Foundation is available below:

Grants Management System

The Bial Foundation Grants Management System (BF-GMS) denotes the restricted access components of the Bial Foundation Grants Management System and offers functionality to researchers and reviewers involved in the BF system of Grants for Scientific Research.

Here you can register to the website, complete your profile, create and submit a new application when a new Financial Support programme is available, as well as manage supported projects since 2014 – e.g. submit scientific and financial progress/final reports.

To use all the functionalities of the system you should first register through the link below. After registering to the website you will find PDF guide that will help you navigating through the System.

We remind you that you can only register once in the BF-GMS registration system. If you have lost and forgotten your login credentials please use the automated recovery tool.

If you still have any doubts, please contact or +351 229 866 150.


Bial Foundation Grants Management System (BF-GMS)

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can the project title required when registering at the platform be changed afterwards?

Yes. You can edit and change this field inside the application form.

Is it possible that a proposal has two principal investigators / co-PI?

Yes. However, the PI indicated in 1st place will be the person the BIAL Foundation will always be in touch with and the one that will sign the Research Funding Agreement together with the Host Entity, in case the application is approved. The second person may be a co-PI. Attachment 4 of the online application only applies to the PI.

Is there a limit on the number of proposals I may submit as Principal Investigator (PI) or take part in?

No. There is no restriction on the number of different proposals you may submit or take part in, but the likelihood of having multiple proposals approved as PI or co-PI is small.

The PI or co-PI of the proposal is PI or co-PI of an ongoing project supported by the BIAL Foundation. Is it possible to apply to a new grant?

Yes. Nevertheless, in case the submitted project is approved for funding it can only start after the ongoing project of the PI or co-PI responsibility is concluded with success. Furthermore, according to the Regulation of Grants, a new project may only be supported in case the ongoing project is concluded by October 2021.

Does the BIAL Foundation support master or PhD projects?

The BIAL Foundation assesses and supports scientific research projects. These projects may be developed for the purpose of a master or PhD. However, the Foundation does not pay for any tuition fees and will only take into consideration the research project timeline.

Does the BIAL Foundation accept applications without a Host Entity?

No. You must have a Host Entity that supports the development of the project within its facilities. In case the project is approved, the Host Entity will sign the Research Funding Agreement and receive the funding.

Is it possible to include figures, images or graphs in the application?

In the editable fields, you can only insert text. Nevertheless, if you find necessary to add figures, images or graphs, for the Scientific Board appraisal, you can upload them in the section “ATTACHMENTS REQUIRED TO SUBMIT APPLICATION – 7. Other attached documents (optional)”. Each file cannot exceed 5MB. You should draw the attention of the Scientific Board to the attached files in the section “Research Plan and Methods”.

In the section “Previous Funded Projects”, can I mention ongoing or concluded projects of other research team members?

Yes. In this section you should list all the projects funded by the BIAL Foundation that a research team member has taken part in, regardless of its project role.

What should I include in the expected output indicators field?

You must specify the number of publications and actions you expect to achieve with this research project during its duration. Be positive, but also realistic in terms of your expectations. If the proposal is approved, you have to ensure that the team is able of carrying out the project as described in the proposal and achieve in full the expected outputs.

Which are the eligible expenses?

The funding can be used to support:

  1. a) Human resources - Remuneration of the team members (including the PI), of office staff and of external staff hired for the project. The remuneration can cover taxes, social insurance contributions and other deductions.
  2. b) Missions (max. 10% of the total requested funding) - Expenses resulting from project-related participation in conferences, travel for fieldwork, meetings and visits. E.g.: travel expenses, registration fees, daily allowances and accommodation.
  3. c) Consultants - Consultancy expenses for project support. Persons that may collaborate on the project and receive financial support for travel, accommodation and meals and remuneration for consultancy work done on support of the project.
  4. d) Acquisition of goods and services - Expenses related to acquisition of goods or services for the project properly documented by Invoice/Receipt and compensation to research subjects for participation in studies. Also included in this category are other current expenses directly related to the execution of the project (e.g., consumables, reagents, acquisition of books, subscriptions to scientific journals, etc.).
  5. e) Other costs - Expenses not covered by the preceding categories, such as publication fees, etc.
  6. f) Equipment (max. 50% of the total requested funding) - Expenses related to the acquisition/renting of software, instruments and equipment, provided they are directly and unequivocally used by the project and remain confined to the project during its execution period. Hardware (such as desktop, laptop, tablet, monitor, printer, scanner, mobile phone, etc.) is not accepted.

Can I include in the budget expenses that expectedly will be made before the start date and/or after the end date of the project?

No. All the expected expenses must be incurred during the project duration.

Are overheads/indirect costs eligible?

No. Overheads/indirect costs and payments for the use of spaces or equipment of the Host Entity or the Research Centre where the project will be conducted are not eligible and will not be accepted, with the exception of payments for the use of neuroimaging devices – CT, MEG, MRI, PET, SPECT.

Is additional funding from the host entity or other entity required for an application?


I would like to upfront a large proportion of the payment early in the beginning of the project. Is this possible?

No. In principle, the total amount should be smoothly and equitably divided during the project duration. At least 3 instalments should be considered and the final payment (made after approval of the final report and other requirements are met) must be no less than 10% of the total amount.

If the proposal is approved, will the amount awarded be equal to the requested funding?

The BIAL Foundation reserves the right to adjust the total requested funding according to the reviewing process.

Is there a specific template for the CVs?

No. It is not specified the information needed, however the CV should be in English and have 4 pages maximum. A CV including all the information you find relevant for the Scientific Board appraisal must be uploaded for each team member.

Is there a specific template for attachment 3 – opinion/declaration of the Host Entity?

No. However, the declaration should clearly convey the commitment of the Host Entity to support the development of the project within their facilities by providing the technical and logistical support required to perform the research project in case it succeeds to be awarded. This declaration must mention the title of the project and be signed by the Dean/Head/Director of the University/Institution (Host Entity) or by the Director of the Department/Laboratory/Research centre of the Host Entity. When the PI or co-PI is simultaneously the Director of the Department/Laboratory/Research centre the declaration, whenever possible, should be signed by another representative of the Host Entity.

Should the Research Project be submitted to the ethics committee in advance?

Yes. Whenever the Research Project involves the use of animal and/or human subjects it is required proof of its submission to the competent ethics committee(s) when applying to the BIAL Foundation. You can upload: a letter from the ethics committee acknowledging receipt of submission for review; an automatic email received; a print screen of the platform; or other document, depending on the system used by the Committee. Afterwards, in case the Research Project is approved for funding, proof of the ethics approval must be uploaded before the BIAL Foundation issues the Research Funding Agreement.

The data collection will be carried out in more than one country. Is it necessary to submit the Research Project to the competent ethics committee of each country?


Can I submit an application by email because I faced some problems submitting the application online?

No. The BIAL Foundation cannot accept applications unless they are submitted via the Bial Foundation Grants Management System (BF-GMS) by the requested deadline - 31st of August 2020, 23:59 (GMT+1). Applications are not accepted in any other format or sent by another mechanism. Due to the large number of applications expected, there may be technical issues during the hours close to the deadline. We therefore recommend that you submit your project proposal well in advance of the deadline.

When will the outcome of my application be known?

All applicants will receive an e-mail letting them know the decision within four months after the deadline for submission of applications.

Can I appeal against the decision to not fund my proposal?

No. The BIAL Foundation works hard to ensure that all proposals are thoroughly considered and that everyone is treated equally and fairly. However, we will not consider appeals against the decision to not fund a proposal.


In 1994 the BIAL Foundation launched a Grants programme for scientific research with the aim of encouraging the research into healthy human being’s physical and mental processes, namely in fields still largely unexplored but which warrant further scientific analysis, as Psychophysiology and Parapsychology.

Since its launch, applications to the BIAL Foundation Grants have been increasing. Up to now 691 projects have been supported, involving about 1500 researchers from 25 countries.

The approved applications have benefited from grants in amounts ranging from €5,000 to €50,000. The amount to be granted is fixed by the Scientific Board according to the needs of each project.

The research funded by the BIAL Foundation from 1994 to April 2020 has resulted in the publication of 1555 papers, 1186 of which in indexed journals (in Scopus or Web of Science) and 991 in impact factor journals. Almost half of the papers were published in journals that ranked in the first quartile (Q1) in their subject area. By April 2020, 1025 papers were cited on average 20 times.

Among the researchers supported by the BIAL Foundation, is worth highlighting the presence of scientists from prestigious universities from the United Kingdom, United States, Germany, France, Australia, Russia, Spain and Japan, among many others.

Some of the Research Centres supported by BIAL Foundation

Supported Researchers

Numbers & Statistics

Throughout several editions, the Grants for Scientific Research of the BIAL Foundation have been increasingly recognized. In the first edition of Grants, in 1994, the BIAL Foundation received a total of 48 applications and supported 10 projects. Since then, the number of applications has increased significantly and in the last edition of 2018, 366 research projects involving 975 researchers were received, out of which 77 projects were funded. The graph shows the percentage of the funded projects according to the total number of applications received in each edition.

In total, in the 13 editions, 691 research projects were supported, involving 1494 researchers from 25 countries. The supported projects are equivalent to 27% of total applications, and are divided in the fields of Psychophysiology (50%), Parapsychology (32%) and both (18%).

Reflecting the increasing awareness of the BIAL Foundation, supporting research in psychophysiology and parapsychology within the international scientific community, the most significant numbers of applications, apart from Portugal, come from the UK, USA, and Italy.

The research funded by the BIAL Foundation in the areas of Psychophysiology and Parapsychology from 1994 to April 2020 has resulted in the publication of 1186 articles in indexed journals (in Scopus or Web of Science), 991 of which in journals with an average impact factor of 3.7 and 183 in journals with an impact factor greater than 5. By April 2020, there was a substantial number of citations (20.030), with 278 publications cited more than 20 times.

Globally, the researchers supported by the BIAL Foundation published 2668 scientific papers, chapters, book chapters, conference abstracts and master and doctoral theses.

A study conducted by Marinho, Guedes and Sousa, presented at the 12th Symposium of the BIAL Foundation, held in Porto from April 4 to 7, 2018, gives an overview of the changes in the number of publications from 1994 to March 2018 and can be accessed at the following link. In addition, the Foundation provides an open online database that can be accessed by the scientific community and by the general public here.


List of Principal Investigators

Poster – 12th Symposium 2018

Numbers & Statistics

Supported Projects