The selection process for an APART-GSK Fellowship of the Austrian Academy of Sciences takes around six months.

The candidates’ applications that make the shortlist are reviewed by international experts.  At least two reviewers are consulted per application. The candidates ranking highest on the basis of the reviews within a given research field are invited to interviews with at least two members of the committee with relevant expertise. The committee’s decision to award fellowships is based on the reviews and the interviews.

Upon completion of the review procedure, the reviews are anonymised before being sent to each applicant.

Please note that due to budgetary circumstances applications have to be rejected despite receiving positive reviews.

The committee’s decision is final.

Awarding committee

The awarding committee consists of scholars at a university or non-university research institution in Austria who are proven experts in their field in Austria. The committee members are nominated by the Austrian Academy of Sciences.

Care is taken when assembling the committee to avoid bias.


In the initial phase of selection, the awarding committee decides which applications will be externally reviewed, evaluating the applicant’s personal qualifications and the scholarly quality of the research project. If the panel is of the opinion that an application does not fulfil the criteria of the funding programme, it is rejected.

After pre-selection, the applicants receive a written explanation for the rejection of their application or are informed that the application will be subjected to international review. The committee members suggest suitable reviewers based abroad to conduct the external review. Their selection strictly avoids bias or potential conflicts of interest.

There is not a fixed pool of reviewers; for each application, experts are sought who can assess the proposal on the basis of their own academic experience or research activities in line with the international standards in the given field of research. These reviewers are engaged on a voluntary basis, i.e. they do not receive financial remuneration for this activity.

Applicants are entitled to exclude up to three scholars from the review procedure (e.g. due to professional competition or rival schools).

Assessment criteria

Applicant’s academic qualifications and development prospects

  • publications
  • special successes, distinctions, awards
  • (international) mobility
  • (international) cooperation with other scholars or working groups (including in other disciplines)

Scholarly quality of the proposed project

  • originality and relevance to the field
  • clarity of research questions
  • appropriateness of methodology
  • feasibility of the project – incl. work plan and timetable

Review process

At least two reviews are obtained for each application to the APART-GSK programme. For interdisciplinary proposals spanning several fields of research, this number can be increased.

If the written statement is not conclusive, a further review is obtained. The reviewers are requested to declare any potential bias.  If bias is established retrospectively, the review is considered null and void.

The committee members create a ranking of the applications assigned to them on the basis of the reviews.  The highest ranking candidates within a given field are invited to interviews conducted by at least suitable two members of the committee with relevant expertise in that field.

The decision on the selection of fellows is made in the awards meeting on the basis of the reviews and the interviews.

Notifying applicants

After the awards meeting, the reviewers’ written statements are anonymised and sent to the applicants.