Orientation on the process in the event of a lack of review from a recognized researcher

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The Innovation Fund Denmark (IFD) has become aware that a case processing error has occurred in connection with the appointment of peer reviewers in the evaluation of applications for the programs "Industrial Researcher", "Grand Solutions" as well as the two international programs "EUREKA" and "bilateral collaborations".

Applicants who wish to clarify whether they are covered by the error, and possibly wish to raise a claim for compensation, can contact IFD, cf. below. The error occurred in the period from IFD's creation in 2015 until the following dates:

  • 1 April 2022 (Industrial Researcher),
  • 1 January 2022 (Grand Solutions),
  • 1 January 2021 (EUREKA) and
  • 1 January 2021 (bilateral collaborations).

In order to ensure that professional reviews are carried out competently and impartially, it follows from § 18, subsection 2, in the Act on Denmark's Innovation Fund, cf. Legislative Decree no. 1660 of 12 August 2021, that applications for research activities in whole or in part must be reviewed by recognized researchers, cf. § 2, no. 1, in the Act on Denmark's Research and the Innovation Policy Council and Denmark's Free Research Foundation, with the relevant involvement of external reviewers.

IFD has observed that historically, regrettably, in all reviews, the fund cannot document that among the persons who have reviewed applications that included research activities, there has been at least one recognized researcher. Thus, by mistake, IFD has not noted or journalized information about these persons, which could document that it was a recognized researcher.

Furthermore, it is the IFD's immediate judgement that applications for research activities may have been processed without having been reviewed by at least one recognized researcher. However, it is not possible for the foundation to determine the exact extent of this. The latter may have caused that some of the foundation's decisions on the mentioned programs were not correctly made, depending on the circumstances. However, the Industrial Researcher program, the Grand Solutions program and the international programs EUREKA and bilateral collaborations are pool programmes, i.e. are organized in such a way that the applicants within each program are in direct competition with each other, cf. § 18, subsection 1, in the Act on IFD. Since the grants have already been awarded and the application rounds have ended, the foundation does not have the option of resuming the covered application rounds.

If an applicant wishes to clarify whether his or her specific application has been reviewed by at least one recognized researcher, the applicant can contact IFD at the email addresses listed below. IFD will then make an assessment of whether at least one of the persons who reviewed the application was a recognized researcher at the time of the review. If it subsequently turns out that none of the reviewers involved who have reviewed the application has been a recognized researcher, and if the applicant believes that the foundation is responsible for the applicant having suffered a loss according to the general rules of Danish law regarding compensation, the applicant can apply to IFD for compensation. However, it requires, among other things, that the applicant can document that there has been a financial loss and that the error has resulted in the grant not being granted. If, after the inquiry, IFD agrees with the compensation claim, the foundation will be able to pay compensation. If, on the other hand, IFD does not agree with the compensation claim, the applicant will be referred to raise the compensation claim in the courts.

It should be noted that only applicants for the Industrial Researcher program, the Grand Solutions program and the international programs EUREKA and bilateral collaborations are covered by the above process.

Inquiries about the above can be made to:

Industrial Researcher: erhvervsforsker@innofond.dk
Grand Solutions: store.projekter@innofond.dk
International programs: internationale@innofond.dk