What is it about?
The Fund supports applied geological research designed to improve our knowledge of the prevention or remediation of the impact on the geological environment of the exploitation and use of natural resources. Such impacts include the extraction, mining and processing of building materials, minerals, ground water and ores, together with their primary and secondary processing. They also include the valorisation of secondary materials such as tailings, flotation residues and waste dumps of mines and ore processing plants. The research proposals are expected to be practical, i.e. with a link to a real present or historical situation. Alternatively, they may evaluate as yet undocumented environmental issues. However, the proposed research study may not form part of any studies made mandatory or commissioned by public authorities. A practical research project is considered to include fieldwork constituting the backbone of the research, and must be carried out within a Belgian university or one agreed by the board. While the geographical focus does not have to be limited to Belgium, priority will be given to resolving problems relevant to Belgium. Priority will be given to researchers from Flanders. The Fund aims to help young earth scientists to prepare for their MSc, PhD thesis or post-doctoral research for a degree in geology and mineralogy, civil (geophysical) engineering, bio-engineering, chemistry or physics. The financial support for the project can vary according to the estimated budget with a ceiling of €40,000. If a research project is approved, a first sum of (maximum) €20,000 will be released; after a positive intermediate evaluation of the project (in month 24) the remaining sum of (maximum) €20,000 will be disbursed. The budget may be used to defray the different costs related to the fieldwork (analysis, material, travel and hotel expenses, etc). The budget may be used to cover costs for MSc studies/students. The application can be submitted by the researcher but must be endorsed by the head of the laboratory or department where the research will be carried out. The research must be presented/reported on in English.