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Certain calls for funding use a so-called "thematic approach": inviting for proposals to explore a pre-determined topic.

This normally stems from a higher level priority at European or national level, where multiple types of solutions (i.e. projects) are seeked for. Projects granted in response to a thematic call are most often interdisciplinary and cover a large part of a knowledge or value chain (i.e. involve a range of stakeholders). Thematic calls are usually open to teams (consortia); they are in many cases one-time calls. Examples of thematic calls include NWO Mission-driven calls  in the KIC (Knowledge and Innovation Covenant), Thematic Programming in the Dutch Research Agenda (NWA) and the EU Missions.

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