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Governance of the F.R.S.-FNRS

Managing bodies

For 90 years, the Fund for Scientific Research -FNRS has played a central role in fundamental research in Belgium. It encourages the growth of knowledge by funding research across all scientific disciplines. It funds researchers (at various stages of their scientific development), research credits and projects, equipment and research infrastructure, and also mobility and national or international collaborative projects.

Fundamental research, the precursor to the innovation process and economic development, plays an essential role as a driver for new knowledge, and paves the way for innovation in many socio-economic sectors. It also enables the training of high-level scientists from all disciplines and ensures a high standard of teaching in Belgian universities.

Over the years, specialised Associated Funds were created to fund scientific research, specifically fundamental research done in predefined scientific sectors, which have been identified as strategic due either to societal needs or their potential applications. These 8 Funds receive additional public subsidies and round out the core role of the F.R.S.-FNRS. Under the guidance of the F.R.S.-FNRS, these specialised Associated Funds are in direct contact with research as it evolves. Their structure and the way they work were designed in such a way that they form one coherent whole.


The F.R.S.-FNRS and its 8 specialised Funds are each administered by a Board of Trustees or a Management committee made up of representatives from Wallonia-Brussels Federation university institutions as well as figures from the social, economic and political fields.

The F.R.S.-FNRS Board of Trustees

=> Composition (only in FR)

The BoT of the F.R.S.-FNRS shall:
  • manage and allocate the financial means provided by the various Authorities (Wallonia-Brussels Federation and federal state)
  • represent the F.R.S.-FNRS at international scientific institutions and manage the relevant contributions,
  • award the Prizes, distinctions and specific endowments entrusted to the F.R.S.-FNRS through donations or specific bequests,
  • accomplish any administrative tasks necessary to carry out its duties.

Bureau of the Board of Trustees

=>Composition (only in FR)

The Bureau shall examine any issue which must be put before the Board of Trustees, and may add proposals. It shall do the same for any other issue which the Board has asked it to examine.

The 8 specialized funds of F.R.S.-FNRS


FRIA, the Fund for Research Training in Industry and Agriculture was entrusted to the F.R.S.-FNRS in 1994 by the government of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation.

=> Composition (only in FR)


In 2012, the government of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation created the Human Sciences Research Fund (FRESH). The goal of this Fund is to answer the various and complementary needs for fundamental research in human and social sciences.
The 21 June 2018 meeting of the F.R.S.-FNRS Board of Trustees decided to limit the call for doctoral scholarships for human and social science graduates.

A specific feature of the FRESH Fund is the societal impact of the research programmes selected for financial support, as underlined and redefined in the 21 June 2018 meeting of the F.R.S.-FNRS Board of Trustees: “The FRESH Fund supports fundamental research projects whose conclusions are likely to improve, in the short to medium term, the understanding or operation of a sector of society at the local, regional, national or international level, especially through cultural, economic, political, social or socio-psychological aspects.”

=> Composition (only in FR)


The Interuniversity Institute for Nuclear Sciences (IISN) was created in 1947 (before CERN) to answer one the biggest concerns of the latter half of the 20th century: the study of matter. The IISN funds peaceful nuclear research, and now mostly funds Belgian projects at CERN. Belgium’s CERN membership fee is covered by the Federal Energy Ministry.  

=> Composition (only in FR)


The Fund for Medical Scientific Research (FRSM) was created in 1957 to meet the specific needs of scientific research into human health.

=> Composition (only in FR)


The Fund for Collective Fundamental Research (FRFC) was created in 1965 at the initiative of researchers, and encourages team-based research in all the scientific disciplines not already covered by the other two Associated Funds (IISN and FRSM).

=> Composition (only in FR)


The Strategic Fundamental Research Fund (FRFS) was created in 2013 by the Wallonia-Brussels Federation and entrusted to the F.R.S.-FNRS as part of the interlinked policies with the Walloon Region.

The Strategic Fundamental Research Fund (FRFS) is a F.R.S.-FNRS specialised Fund which finances high quality fundamental research in key areas according to the objectives set by the Walloon Region.

=> Composition (only in FR)


The Excellence of Science (EOS) is a four-year programme funded by the F.R.S.-FNRS on behalf of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation and by the FWO on behalf of the Flemish Community. This programme helps research groups from the country’s two linguistic communities collaborate on common fundamental research projects across all scientific disciplines.  In 2017, 38 projects were selected and funded on a 120 million euro budget for 4 years. http://www.eosprogramme.be

=> Composition (only in FR)


The Art Research Fund (FRArt) is an F.R.S.-FNRS Associated Fund created in 2018 by the government of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation to fund non-doctoral art research projects headed by artist-researchers, both individually and in groups, validated by one or several Écoles Supérieures des Arts (ESA).

=> Composition (only in FR)

Contact us

Fund for Scientific Research - FNRS

Rue d’Egmont 5

B - 1000 Bruxelles

Tél : +32 2 504 92 11

BE55 0016 0000 0044

Contact the FNRS