Kone Foundation’s focuses in awarding grants

The funding decisions are guided by the central values defined in the Foundation’s strategy.

The funding decisions are guided by the central values defined in the Foundation’s strategy.

General principles

1. Academic and artistic freedom and the intrinsic value of research and art

We see research and art as valuable in and of themselves and not, for example, as means to generate profit. We rarely fund product development. Academic endeavours and artistic work must be developed freely on one’s own premises.

Read an essay by legal philosopher Ari Hirvonen on academic freedom. 
Read an essay by artist Jenni Laiti on artistic freedom. 

2. A plurality of voices

We want different voices to be heard, and we encourage collaboration. In our funding decisions, we emphasise disciplines and topics that are multidisciplinary and novel and seek to challenge prevailing views.

A project’s topic can be chosen freely, as long as the discipline is funded by the Foundation.

3. Boldness

One of our central values is boldness, which includes experimentation, incompleteness, indeterminacy and a combination of unexpected approaches.

4. Long term

The Foundation supports work done in peace, and it emphasises multi-year personal grants for academic and artistic work.

5. Crossing borders, both national and disciplinary

We support transnationalism, which can apply to Finnish grantees working abroad or foreign grantees working in Finland. We encourage our applicants to combine research and art in multidisciplinary projects.

6. Environmental sustainability

Additional funds can be awarded for travel that is more ecologically sustainable than, e.g., flying. Keep in mind that the Foundation offers no travel grants, so please include travel expenses in the “Other” section of your budget.

Research funding

We can fund high-quality research in the humanities, social sciences and environmental sciences, artistic research and multidisciplinary work that involves the academic fields mentioned above.

In artistic research or arts-based research, the artistic and academic aspects interact, and the work usually takes place at a university with degree programmes in art. Artistic research often has a connection with the researcher’s own artistic or arts pedagogy work.

The Foundation does not fund research in psychology, theology, law studies or business studies without an interdisciplinary dimension. Medical research is not supported.

In research funding decisions, our emphasis is on post-doctoral studies and more advanced stages of careers.

Art funding

The Foundation supports professional artistic work in all fields of art.

The emphasis is on artistic work, but the Foundation can, in exceptional cases, support cultural initiatives, such as work in museums that does not involve artistic work. However, the proportion of other kinds of cultural work in the Foundation’s funding decisions is marginal.

Programmes and thematic calls

Thematic funding calls will be evaluated separately from the general call. The general call is open and non-thematic, which means that the applications need not have a connection with the programme or the themes of the special calls. In 2021 Kone Foundation will launch the programme “Is Democracy Eroding?”

Grant statistics

Most of Kone Foundation funding is awarded as personal grants for academic research, artistic work or work that combines research and art. The statistics for grants awarded in 2020 can be found here.

In addition, in both research and artistic projects, we can award funding for additional expenses (other than personal grants) necessary for the work.