NRF established researchers

A number of funding instruments are available to researchers. These opportunities are primarily call-based and are released according to the NRF’s schedule. For more information and to check the call deadlines please visit the Current Funding Opportunities page or contact the Research Support Services.


Bioinformatics and functional genomics (BFG)

BFG is a Department of Science and Technology (DST) contract-funded programme that aims to support bioinformatics applications in biotechnology projects in line with national priorities. Read more.
(No planned call for 2016)

Blue skies research

Described as a multi-dimensional, self-initiated, curiosity-driven inquiry that necessitates high investment risks, blue skies research addresses new phenomena as well as pushing the frontiers of knowledge. Read more.

Community engagement grants

This instrument supports research and activities aimed at improving our understanding of the concept of community engagement and the suite of activities that supports this aim. Read more.

Incentive funding for rated researchers (IFRR)

The IFRR is awarded to NRF-rated researchers and aims to incentivise excellent research. Read more.

DST/NRF South African Research Chairs Initiative (SARChI)

The SARChI chairs were established in 2006 by the Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the National Research Foundation (NRF). The initiative is designed to attract and retain excellence in research and innovation at South African public universities through the establishment of research chairs at public universities with a long-term investment trajectory of up to 15 years. Read more.

 Competitive support programme for unrated researchers (CSUR)

The CSUR is a highly competitive discipline-based funding instrument that principally supports basic research by unrated researchers as the foundation of knowledge production, in the disciplines of the humanities, social and natural sciences. Read more.  

Competitive programme for rated researchers (CPRR)

The CPRR is a highly competitive discipline-based funding instrument that principally supports basic research by rated researchersas the foundation of knowledge production in all disciplines. Read more.