There are many different ways in which you can get support for your Nordic project. We at the Nordic Institute on Åland act as a local information point for the Nordic support programs and we are more than happy to guide you in navigating among networks, contacts and grant programmes.
Many people may find that it complicated with the application process itself. Therefore, we would like to inform you about five important things to keep in mind, so that your application is as qualitative as possible. It affects your chances of getting an approved application and receiving support!
Berit Anne Larsen, head of communication at "Statens Museum for Kunst" in Copenhagen and an expert in the Nordic Cultural Point's culture and art program and the culture and language program Volt for children and young people, has a long experience of reading different types of applications. NIPÅs sisterorganization Nordic Culture Point has published some of her very best tips and advice on how you can sharpen your application and make it as relevant and good as possible. Here are the tips in brief!
Be proud of the Nordic perspective
We’re always pleased to see applicants’ texts mentioning Nordic potential in the form of co-operation. We enjoy reading about people’s curiosity about and searches for something “Nordic”. The pan-Nordic perspective shouldn’t merely safeguard co-operation; it should also be central to the concept, content, and process of the project.
Give a clear description of the project
It’s essential that the text give a clear overview of the project. The text should be clear, concise, and well-formulated.
Ensure the application has roots in all parties to the project
Set aside enough time to discuss the project with your partners before writing the application. This ensures ownership of and sustainability in the project, and these discussions will be reflected in the final application. As readers, we can tell from the text when the application has its basis in collective discussion. Furthermore, this reassures the readers assessing the applications that all partners feel involved in the project and that everyone knows what they’ll be expected to do should the funding be approved. In other words, the application can be seen as a kind of psychological contract of co-operation.
Remember to ensure consistency between the project description and the budget
Make sure there is a connection between what you say, what you intend to do, and the activities you’ve budgeted for. A lot of otherwise good applications fall down because of an imbalance between what’s written down and the figures. It may be a good idea to start with the budget when working on your application. What activities would you like to get funding for, and what needs to be done for you to pull them off?
Treat the funding with respect
The programmes exist to support the applicants and to provide a foundation from which positive cultural contributions can grow and come to fruition. In other words, there is an ethical aspect to both the granting of and the application for project funding. This requires that both the experts making the decisions and the applicants themselves act responsibly. By way of example, the budget should not have huge administration expenses and just tiny amounts for the artist or cultural practitioner.
If you want to read more about how you can create a really good application, you can visit our sister organization Nordic Culture Point's website.
Good luck with your application. Do not hesitate to contact us at NIPÅ if you need advice - right now we are mainly planning digital meetings.