Questions and answers

Questions and answers for the 2016 - 2020 grant period.

The questions and answers will be updated frequently.

We are receiving many questions concerning whether different types of organisations and projects are eligible for support. A general advice is to read all documents on the website carefully before you consider applying. Then it is the task of each applicant to argue why they believe their organization and project are suitable and will contribute to the objectives of this grant scheme.

How many countries can be part of the application?

The online application form only allows you to fill in five countries. However, if your project targets more than five countries, you chose the five countries with the largest components for the online application form. All countries may be listed in the concept note.

Which countries are eligible for support?

For The Norwegian Climate and Forest Initiative (NICFI), the following countries are of particular relevance; Brazil, Indonesia, Guyana, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Tanzania, DRCongo, Peru, Colombia and Liberia. Projects targeting these countries will be prioritized. 

NICFI follows the same principle for concentration as other Norwegian aid initiatives, which means that projects in countries not listed under the Norwegian policy of concentration of aid recipients, are not eligible for support.

Exceptions from this may be made if the project as a whole is assessed as being of particular importance to the objectives of this scheme.

Are there limits to the size of the budget in each application?

No there are no limits. However, the annual disbursements per project in the current portfolio are between NOK 4 million to NOK 20 million.

Are projects targeting other biomes than rainforest eligible?

Yes, projects may target other forest biomes.

Is there a limit to the number of applications from the same organization?

Yes. Each organization may submit maximum three applications/concept notes, and only one application within the same thematic category. The applications from each organization should be coordinated. International organizations with country offices will be considered as one organization and must coordinate the applications  from the country level with a total maximum of three applications.

Applicants are strongly advised to choose a clear strategic approach in their total submission of concept notes. Rather than country-chapters/sister-organizations of an international organization/network submitting 1-3 separate concept notes, applicants are strongly advised to coordinate and present joint concept notes of larger programmes consisting of subprojects from the different sister organizations


Is it possible for two or more organizations to cooperate on one application?

Yes, this is possible. However, when entering into an agreement with Norad, only one organization can be the agreement partner. It is also important that the application demonstrate a clear role division and value-added for each of the cooperating organizations.

What is the funding period for this call for proposals?

The funding period is year 2016-2020. Norad will prioritize projects with a 5-year duration.

Why is there a two-stage application process?

The application process consists of two stages: first, a 5-page concept note, then, a full project document for invited applicants that have been selected on the basis of the concept note.

This is an open call for proposals, which means that the number of applications will be significant. In the previous application round, Norad received nearly 700 concept notes. In order to handle all the applications, we kindly ask all the applicants to describe the essence of the project in the concept note. As the concept note will serve as the decision fundament, we advise the applicants to carefully craft the content of the concept note.

What are the formatting requirements for the concept note?

Applicants must use the concept note template that can be found on Norad’s website. Applications that do not use this form will not be considered. The concept note is to be maximum 5 pages long, using style Calibri, 11 point.

Are Norwegian and English the only languages used for the communication with Norad?

Yes, all formal communication and documentation sent to Norad must be in English or Norwegian. This is a strict requirement. The reason is that those are the two languages Norad officers and officers in other external control institutions are required to master. For proponents speaking other languages, it is possible to include costs for translation.

Currency exchange rate?

In the concept note, we kindly ask the applicant to state the amount applied for in Norwegian Kroner. The purpose is to be able to understand the scope of the project and compare it with other applications quickly.

In the project document (stage two), however, we would like to have the budget presented in the currency, which theorganisation will use during the project period. The budget should state total amount for each budgetary year in Norwegian Kroner and the currency exchange rate applied.

Do I need to attach letters of commitments from partners?

During the stage of the concept note, stage one, you do not need to attach letters of commitments from partners. The applicants who are invited to submitting a full Project Document will be asked to attach letters of commitments.

Can we apply for funding of research activities?

This funding scheme is not primarily targeted at research. However, a portion of the funding may be used for research that directly contributes to reaching the goals.

Can private actors apply for funds?

No, private actors cannot apply for funds over this grant scheme. As a main rule, the allocation shall be used for cooperation with nonprofit civil society actors in targeted developing countries. Local or central authorities and commercial actors may upon exception be local partners to the applicant when this is considered the best option and it is consistent with the purpose of the scheme.

What should a budget contain?

In the concept note stage, a detailed budget is not required. Concept notes should include total funds applied for (in NOK) and if relevant main areas of costs.

Norad requests a detailed budget for stage two of the application process, the project document. The budget should contain the following information:

  • Budget divided into outcomes, outputs and activities
  • The distribution of grant to specific countries and partners
  • The administration cost should be clearly stated, and not exceed 7 %


May we apply for a holistic project with elements from all thematic areas?

Yes, we welcome a holistic approach with broad themes. But remember that you must choose one thematic area that best fits your project, even if you take a more holistic approach.

Published 13.11.2014
Last updated 16.02.2015