Research Projects "Education for Tomorrow

The initiative's main objectives are to strengthen educational research, contribute to a knowledge-based policy for the educational sector and achieve widespread dissemination of project results.

The Nordic countries and their educational systems share important aims, roots and cultural characteristics. The countries all have a strong tradition of public educational systems from kindergarten to universities, and beyond, into life-long learning.

The initiative aims both to enhance the understanding of education and educational systems and to explore their role as factors in tomorrow's society.

The initiative seeks a forward-looking view and encourages reconceptualisation of the notion of education.

Funding is available under this call for large-scale Nordic research projects.

Who can apply?
Researchers and research groups at universities and other research institutions in the Nordic (*) countries are eligible to apply for funding. The formal applicant must be an institution, organisation or other legal entity based in one of the Nordic countries.

(*) Nordic is defined here as Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and the autonomous areas, Faroe Islands, Greenland, and Åland Islands.

Thematic framework
To be eligible for funding, research projects and activities must support genuine Nordic cooperation, and should employ a range of innovative research methods and multi-level analyses that can potentially accommodate the entire educational system. Projects should incorporate an interdisciplinary approach to ensure the development of new knowledge from different perspectives. Novel methodologies, comparative studies, classroom studies and new ways of utilising existing data sources, e.g. combinations of existing Nordic databases and new observations, are encouraged. Gender issues, ethnicity, regional differences and socio-economic and cultural components also comprise important aspects of the initiative. Apart from Finland, the Nordic educational systems perform similarly in international evaluations such as the PISA surveys. However, there is marked variation in performance between the Nordic schools.

Research questions to be addressed include how to identify the strengths and weaknesses in the Nordic educational systems using various types of measurement. Can the characteristics and variations be accounted for through investigation of systemic issues or, perhaps, by observing what takes place within the schools or the classrooms? How are educational outcomes influenced by leadership and management issues? What is the impact of teacher education and professional development on educational outcomes? What kind of effects do new teaching and learning methods, such as the use of ICT, have on the educational outcomes? To what extent do current education and educational systems contribute to marginalisation? Furthermore, what are the links between changes in the labour market and drop-outs in upper secondary school and vocational training?

New insights are being sought in various areas such as:

  • Teaching and learning: new contexts, contents and methods
  • Leadership and management: new instruments and incentives
  • Governance: internationalisation and multi-level governance
  • Education and the welfare state
  • Equity and equal access

The initiative seeks to develop new knowledge from different perspectives. Thus, interdisciplinary projects and proposals that extend across more than one thematic area will be viewed in a particularly favourable light.

Read the full call text here


Siri Bjarnar. Photo: NordForsk

Siri Jørgensen Bjarnar

Leder for operativ virksomhet