The aim of Spark is to fund the rapid testing or development of novel and unconventional scientific approaches, methods, theories, standards, ideas for applications, etc. It is designed for projects that show unconventional thinking and introduce a unique approach. The focus is on promising ideas of high originality for which preliminary data are not necessarily available (high-risk research). Hence, negative results will also be regarded as knowledge gained. The focus is on projects or ideas that are unlikely to be funded under other funding schemes.
It is open to any applicant with a doctorate or equivalent qualifications.
Applicants can request between CHF 50,000 and CHF 100,000 for a project duration of six to twelve months. The project must begin within six months of being approved, otherwise the grant expires.