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Utlysning av forskningsmedel 2016

Försäkringskassan calls for proposals for project funding for research in three areas of social security. The research funding amounts to SEK 8.9 million for 2016. The application deadline was 31 August 2016.

The purpose of this call is to strengthen both the research on social security and research with a clear link to Försäkringskassan's need for knowledge and practical work. The aim is also to increase the utilisation of research within the operations and create value for the individual and society. The application must therefore include a clear plan for the dissemination and circulation of research results. Försäkringskassan encourages applications with interdisciplinary approaches. Funding may be sought for projects with a 1-3 year project duration.

Försäkringskassan welcomes applications within the following three areas:

In recent years, sickness absence has increased and sickness benefit cases have become longer. The increased influx of new sickness benefit cases consists mainly of cases with a psychiatric diagnosis, followed by cases with diagnoses related to the musculoskeletal system. In addition to Försäkringskassan, there are several key stakeholders who are involved in different ways in the sick leave process, such as the healthcare system, employers, and the Public Employment Service. Knowledge and evaluation of what efforts are effective in preventing an inability to work and to facilitating return to work are important from both a socioeconomic perspective and an individual perspective.

Försäkringskassan therefore calls for proposals for project funding that – with a clear link to social security – analyses measures to prevent sickness absence or to facilitate return to work in connection with sickness absence.

 

Försäkringskassan administrates a number of benefits aimed at individuals who have a disability or have a child with a disability. Attendance allowance, activity compensation and childcare allowance are some examples of this. Such benefits are intended to contribute in varying degrees to the Government's overall objectives for the group, social inclusion in society, through greater financial security and a greater opportunity to be involved in community life. Increased knowledge of how social security affects the living conditions of persons with disability or long-term illness is important from both a societal perspective and an individual perspective.

Försäkringskassan therefore calls for proposals for project funding that – with a clear link to social security – studies the living conditions of persons with disability or long-term illness and/or analyses the function of social security for persons with disability.

 

Financial disadvantage among households with children is a problem at both the individual and the societal level, and there are both short-term and long-term negative consequences. While such disadvantage exists in all types of households, it is most common among single parents and in households where the parents were born outside of Sweden. Increased knowledge about the importance of social security and the form it takes for different groups is needed to better support financially disadvantaged households with children.

In additional to the general need of increased knowledge, there is a particular need to monitor changes in maintenance support. On 1 April 2016, Försäkringskassan was given an expanded mandate under which the authority shall help parents reach an agreement on reasonable child support for their shared children in the event of separation. At the same time, other legislative changes related to maintenance support went into effect. It is important to monitor the ways in which these changes affect financially disadvantaged households with children.

Försäkringskassan therefore calls for proposals for project funding that – with a clear link to social security – contribute to knowledge on what role social security and Försäkringskassan play for the situation of financially disadvantaged households with children in Sweden today.

 

The application must be written in Sweden and organised as follows: 

1) A cover page with project title, names of the principal and co-applicant, and the principal applicant's contact details. The cover page must also indicate which of the three research areas indicated above the application regards. 

2) A popular scientific abstract of max. 250 words written in Swedish. 

3) A description of the project in Swedish, which must not exceed ten A4 pages (12p) and must be arranged with the following headings: 

  • Background, including statement of the problem 
  • Purpose 
  • Preliminary results (where applicable) 
  • Work plan, including method and schedule 
  • Social relevance 
  • Operational benefit for the authority 
  • Plan for dissemination of research results 
  • Plan for implementation of research results 
  • Participation of relevant societal stakeholders 
  • Ethical considerations, including information on any application for ethical review that has been submitted and approved. The application for ethical review does not have to be approved at the time of application, but must be approved before any awarded funding will be disbursed. If the application for ethical review is not applicable, this must be described under this point. Ethical review requirements are described in more detail below.
  • Project budget. This must include costs for operation, any equipment and/or staff as well as register data and other extracts from Försäkringskassan. Försäkringskassan will cover travel expenses for seminars arranged by the authority as well as conference participation to disseminate the research results nationally and internationally and any expenses associated with publishing the results. Such travel and publication expenses must be specified under this heading. Also include OH costs and include information on pending and awarded grants from other research funders for this or related projects. 
  • References 

4) CV spanning max. two A4 pages per applicant. 

5) A publication list of relevant publications, which may include max. five publications per applicant.

 

 

The applications are assessed by researchers of Försäkringskassan's Scientific Council and external experts. When assessing applications, consideration is given to the project's anticipated scientific quality, social relevance, operational benefits to the authority, feasibility, costs, plan for dissemination and potential circulation of results and the applicant's competence. A decision on awarding of grants is made by Försäkringskassan's Director-General with the support of the researchers' assessment and an internal assessment of the project's relevance to Försäkringskassan's areas.

A central part of achieving operational benefits is having a clear plan for implementing the research results and, if relevant, the participation of relevant societal stakeholders. We will therefore attach particular importance to this when assessing applications. The aim of this is to create favourable conditions for implementing the research results and, if possible, include the perspectives of those who the research concerns and impacts. The implementation of the research results and the participation of relevant societal stakeholders are reported under separate headings in the project application as described below. Studies with a clear equality and gender equality perspective are particularly welcome.

Applications must be received by Försäkringskassan, saved as a PDF, no later than 31 August 2016 at 16:00, submitted by e-mail to:
huvudkontoret@forsakringskassan.se

In the subject line of the e-mail, enter “Application research funding” and the reference number to which the application relates (see the Reg. no. indicated above).

The principal applicant, who must have a PhD by the time the application is submitted, may submit no more than one application during a single application period. A principal applicant may be listed as a co-applicant on another application during a single application period. Applications that are incomplete or arrive after the deadline will not be considered.

Other

As part of the efforts to contribute to operational benefits and to disseminate research results, the principal researcher shall deliver a final report in Swedish at the completion of the project, including a detailed summary, intended for the authority's “Social insurance report” series. The researcher will also participate in seminars organised by the authority in order to provide information about the study. In addition, scientific publications are encouraged. There is ongoing contact with analysts at the authority while the project is in progress. Granted research funding will be disbursed before the end of the year.

For further information and general questions about the call for proposals, please contact:

Johan Sandberg, 010-116 32 28. 
You can also send an e-mail to: 
johan.s.sandberg@forsakringskassan.se

Ethical review

As of 1 January 2004 there is a law concerning the ethical review of research relating to people (the Ethical Review Act). Some amendments to the Ethical Review Act entered into force on 1 June 2008. The amendments entail, inter alia, that projects where informed consent has been obtained and sensitive personal data is involved are also to be ethically reviewed. Försäkringskassan does not have its own ethics committee. The responsibility for an ethical review being performed by an ethical review board, or an advisory statement being obtained, falls to the principal of the organisation where the research is carried out. The rules are summarised on the website:

Ethical Review Boards (epn.se) 
Here you can also find a presentation of the organisation that applies the rules. 

Försäkringskassan also refers to Codex, a website which aims to gather the ethical guidelines and laws that regulate and place ethical demands on the research process.
Codex (codex.vr.se)