Competitive Research Programme

Scheme Objectives

The National Research Foundation Competitive Research Programme funding scheme seeks to foster the formation of multi-disciplinary teams to conduct cutting-edge research projects that are of relevance to Singapore and the society.  

The Competitive Research Programme funds use-inspired basic research projects that are selected  through a merit review process based on scientific excellence. The theme of the proposed research project must be motivated by an important need or problem to be solved.

Past projects have made discoveries of potential significant impact to industry and society.  

Call Frequency and Grant Quantum

The CRP scheme offers funding support for research programmes of varying sizes, up to a period of 5 years. Calls-for-proposals are launched twice yearly to solicit research ideas in all areas of science and technology. Research ideas at the intersection of multiple disciplines, including biological sciences, are considered.

Eligibility Criteria

Principal Investigators (PIs) from institutions/organisations which fulfil the following criteria will be eligible to participate as Lead PI/Team PI:

  • Registered as an Public Institute of Higher Learning (IHL), Public Healthcare institution, A*STAR Research Institute, CREATE research entities, or research institutes affiliated with the Autonomous Universities (AUs)/A*STAR;

  • Has adequate research infrastructure to support research activities; and

  • Has the ability to take up the responsibilities of a Host Institution.

Private sector and other entities can participate as collaborators.

Lead PI and Team PI(s) must fulfil the following requirements at the point of application and throughout the project duration:

  • Hold a primary and/or joint appointment(s) at eligible institution(s)/organisations(s), with a minimum time commitment of 9 months (per calendar year) in Singapore; and

  • Be an accomplished PI with a track record of leadership ability in coordinating research program(s) and providing mentorship to research teams(s), as well as having productive research outcomes. 

Evaluation Criteria

NRF Expert Panels will shortlist promising ideas to be developed into Full Proposals, which will be evaluated by international peer reviewers and the CRP International Evaluation Panel (IEP). The evaluation criteria for the proposals are as follows:

  • Significance of research

  • Potential for scientific breakthroughs/ Disruptive Innovation

  • Programme management & Budget

  • Technical competencies of research team

  • Potential impact / Relevance to Singapore

Visit the Integrated Grant Management System (IGMS) website to find out more about the next CRP grant call.


#12-02, CREATE Tower

Singapore 138602

Tel: 6684 2900 Fax: 6684 0384

Email: communications@nrf.gov.sg