Released date: 210316

VREF will respect existing rules and regulations regarding travel restrictions (particularly regarding international travel) due to the current COVID19 pandemic.

Based on these restrictions, VREF will reserve its right to approve travel applications during the pandemic. In 2021, and with reference to current international travel restrictions, VREF is willing to waive the requirement that mobility grants will only be awarded for visits to universities in countries outside the country in which the applicant is based.

VREF will thus consider applications for mobility grants to visit other universities *within the same country* in which the applicant is based.

The VREF invites PhD students and researchers at early stages of their careers (max 5 years after PhD exam) to apply for grants for short-term study visits. The invitation is continuously open until October 31st, 2021, and the study visit should be carried out before December 31st, 2021. The VREF wishes to have a broad distribution of grants between universities, thus in the first half of 2020 (up to 30 June 2021) a
maximum of one (1) grant will be awarded to the same home university.

The invitation is open for:

  1. Research teams which are supported by the VREF Future Urban Transport (FUT) Program,
  2. PhD students and early stage researchers from a Swedish University, University College or Research Institute to visit a research team supported by the VREF FUT Program,
  3. Recipients of the Lee Schipper Memorial Scholarship, if recommended by the Lee Schipper Scholarship Board, to visit a research team supported by the VREF FUT Program.

VREF invests in programs and projects with the following mission:

  • To support the development of new knowledge on ideas and solutions that can contribute to equitable access and sustainable urban transport;
  • To support the development of educational and outreach programs in the area of equitable access and sustainable urban transport;
  • To contribute to the dissemination and implementation of research findings among both university researchers, practitioners, decision makers and other relevant stakeholders;
  • To support demonstration projects/examples and change processes.

The overall objectives of the SVG are:

  • to strengthen interaction within the VREF FUT Program Network;
  • to strengthen interaction between the VREF network and Swedish universities; and
  • to provide an opportunity for PhD students and early stage researchers to get an added value of being part of the VREF FUT Program Network

The SVG should be used for a study visit to:

  1. a Centre of Excellence (CoE) which is supported by the VREF FUT Program, or
  2. a research project team which is supported by the VREF FUT Program, or
  3. a Swedish university (with the exception of PhD students and early stage researchers at Swedish university, university college or research institute).

The study visit should be related to the work program for the VREF supported CoE/project or Lee Schipper Scholarship. Both the home university and the host university for the visit should confirm the arrangement. Within four weeks after the study visit, a summarizing Study Visit Report should be submitted to VREF. VREF strongly recommends the parties involved in a study visit (i.e. the home institution, the host institution and the applicant) to produce a tangible output of the study visit, e.g. a jointly written conference paper.

Each individual grant is limited to maximum of 30 000 SEK.

The grant should be used to cover costs in direct relation to the study visit, i.e. travel costs, accommodation costs and other direct costs, e.g. material supply costs. Salary cost, meals and/or per diem will not be covered by the grant. Each applicant can only be awarded one SVG in the same year, and priority will be given to applicants who have not previously received a VREF SVG.

For more information about the application process, please, download the document in the "Completing infoPDF (pdf, 232.1 kB)" prior to sending your application to the VREF secretariat.

Completing info:

Downloads here:

SVG 2021, Invitation and GuidelinesPDF (pdf, 232.1 kB)

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VREF invites applications for research grants to support
projects to be implemented 2022 under the programme for “Mobility & Access in African Cities”.

Deadline: 15 September 2021

MOBILITY GRANT 2021- MAC-MG 2021PDF (pdf, 443.4 kB)

The VREF invites PhD students and advanced master students from Sub-Saharan African (SSA) universities to apply for a Mobility Grant (MG) to support a visit to another SSA university with up to SEK 25 000.


The VREF invites PhD students and researchers in early stages of their career to apply for a Study Visit Grant to be supported with up to SEK 30 000.

CALL FOR NOMINATION FOR the Håkan Frisinger Award for Excellence in Transportation Research

The VREF invites universities located in Sweden to nominate candidates for The Håkan Frisinger Award (Håkan Frisingers pris till framstående transportforskare) and apply for a VREF Visiting Researcher Grant for the nominated candidate.

Closed on 2021-03-15.

Read more...PDF (pdf, 233.8 kB)

Lee Schipper Memorial Scholarships for Sustainable Transport and Energy Efficiency targets supporting the momentum of Lee Schipper’s contribution to the international policy dialogue in these fields.

This yearly award is aimed at supporting young individual researchers and students in is pursuance.

Call deadline: March 1, 2021 .


Blog! Blog! Blog!

Global Mobility Research

This Meeting of the Minds' blog monthly releases interviews of global transportation researchers from the VREF's Future Urban Transport Program Network.


This CityFix series, produced by the WRI (World Ressources Institute) Ross Center for Sustainable Cities and supported by the VREF, discusses walking and cycling in cities with a special focus on low- and middle-income countries.

About VREF

The Volvo Research and Educational Foundations (VREF) inspires, initiates and supports research and educational activities through the Future Urban Transport Programme - How to deal with the complexity of urban transport (FUT). 

Our Vision: Sustainable transport for equitable access in urban areas


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