FWO Postdoc Grant Writing Course


Career management

Target group

Members of the Doctoral Schools and postdoctoral researchers, who are applying for a FWO Postdoc Fellowship (junior or senior) in December 2021.

We strongly encourage that you only apply for this course if you intend to submit an FWO application. Given the limited number of spaces, we may need to reject enrolment applications from PhD candidates who are not preparing FWO applications should that be necessary to guarantee places for those who are.


To support FWO Postdoc applicants in writing their grant proposal.    


Grant reviewers often say that many wonderful projects do not get funded because the idea was not communicated clearly enough. Excellent science is not enough for writing a successful research application: to get funded, you also need excellent grantsmanship. So how do you make sure the advantages of your work are understood and appreciated?

In this workshop, you will learn how to:

  • Interpret the FWO application form and scoring grid correctly, in order to respond accurately to the expectations for a competitive research grant.
  • Use strong structure in State of the Art, Objectives, and Methodological Programme – the key scientific sections.
  • Provide clear, convincing answers to the key requirements of originality, high-risk, methodological ambition, and project impact (added value).
  • Make the most of your academic record, and find ways to fit it into the FWO application, which does not include a separate CV.
  • Comparisons will be drawn with other contexts, such as applying for EU funding or for a full-time position at a research institution.


  • Meeting 1: Opening lecture (2 hours) - Discussing the three tiers of a grant proposal: science, management plan and rhetorical structure.
  • Self-study/ preparation workshop: reading assignments ( 1-1.5 hours) and listening to the podcast series (3 hours junior, 4 hours senior postdocs).
  • Meeting 2: Workshop (2 hours) - Analysis of grant examples, brainstorming on your own proposal and tips on how to strengthen it.
  • Meeting 3: Final discussion with Q&A and summary of lessons learnt (2 hours). 

Time schedule per Doctoral Schools

Members of the Doctoral Schools Arts, Humanities and Law

  • Monday 11 October 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Wednesday 13 October 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Thursday 14 October 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Friday 15 October 2021, 14:00-16:00

Members of the Doctoral Schools Natural Sciences

  • Monday 18 October 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Wednesday 20 October 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Thursday 21 October 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Friday 22 October 2021, 14:00-16:00

Members of the Doctoral Schools Life Sciences and Medicine

  • Monday 25 October 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Wednesday 27 October 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Thursday 28 October 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Friday 29 October 2021, 14:00-16:00

Members of the Doctoral Schools Social and Behavioural Sciences

  • Friday 29 October 2021, 9:00-11:00
  • Wednesday 3 November 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Thursday 4 November 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Friday 5 November 2021, 14:00-16:00

Members of the Doctoral Schools (Bioscience) Engineering

  • Monday 8 November 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Tuesday 9 November 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Wednesday 10 November 2021, 14:00-16:00
  • Friday 12 November 2021, 14:00-16:00



Registration procedure per Doctoral Schools

This course is organized five times, one per Doctoral Schools. If you registered to the wrong course, you are not automatically registered for the correct one. In that case, email to the Doctoral Schools Office to be deleted from the registration list and register to the correct course.

Postdoctoral researchers should register to the course organized at the Doctoral Schools of their faculty.

Members of the Doctoral Schools Arts, Humanities and Lawhttps://eventmanager.ugent.be/fwopostdocgrantwritingcourseahl 

Members of the Doctoral Schools Natural Scienceshttps://eventmanager.ugent.be/fwopostdocgrantwritingcoursens 

Members of the Doctoral Schools Life Sciences and Medicinehttps://eventmanager.ugent.be/fwopostdocgrantwritingcourselm 

Members of the Doctoral Schools Social and Behavioural Scienceshttps://eventmanager.ugent.be/fwopostdocgrantwritingcoursesbs 

Members of the Doctoral Schools (Bioscience) Engineeringhttps://eventmanager.ugent.be/fwopostdocgrantwritingcoursebse 

If the course is fully booked, you can register to the waiting list by sending an email to the Doctoral Schools Office.

Registration fee

Free of charge for the members of all Doctoral Schools and UGent postdoctoral researchers

The no-show policy applies.


Julia Staykova-McKinnon, PhD (Founder of Scriptorium). 



Number of participants

Maximum 25 participants per course

Evaluation criteria

Doctoral candidates can add this course to their curriculum after participation in all sessions (including self-study through podcasts).