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ICP Connect 2025

ICP Connect 2025 - Phase 1 - Stage 2




5 activity years



ICP Connect projects are:

✔️ accredited international study programmes;

✔️ taught in English and;

✔️ organised at one or more Flemish HEIs;

✔️ focusing on subjects that align with the Agenda 2030 and SDG principles.


An online information session took place on 4 May 2023. During this session, we presented the call and the application modalities.

1. ICP Connect 2025 Information Session - Basic info and formats

2. ICP Connect 2025 Information Session - Full Video

Why are ICP Connect projects important?

ICP Connect projects aim to more systematically integrate global perspectives and strengthen partnership and network dimensions into existing educational programmes. This implies a strategy that aims to spur the internationalization and networking of the programme by:

  • adapting content, didactics and approaches;

  • foreseeing modalities to enhance the quality of the learning process and engage participation of international students;

  • linking it with the local context of one or more partner countries by means of student and/or professor mobility and/or partial delocalization of the programme to (one or more) partner institutions;

  • staying connected with graduates of the study programme, and by connecting alumni with each other and with students and (network) partners, at providing learning opportunities and support mechanisms to alumni.

Through educational networks (ICP Connect), and scholarships HEIs aim to systematically integrate global perspectives. In doing so, they create a supportive, inclusive and networked learning environment in which individual scholars, professionals and academics acquire transversal skills and state-of-the-art knowledge on sustainable development. This enables them to become experts and critical global citizens, motivated to act as change agents in their network.

Key features

  • Medium- and long-term results to be achieved within the project duration of a maximum of 10 years, divided by 2 phases of 5 years.

  • Existing programmes taught in English accredited by the Flemish ministry of Education and organized by and (at least partially) at a Flemish university or a Flemish university of applied sciences and arts resulting in a diploma:

    o    Master or Advanced Master programmes with a minimum of 60 and a maximum of 120 ECTS;

    o    Professional or Advanced Bachelor programmes with a minimum of 60 and a maximum of 180 ECTS;

    o    Bachelor of Arts programmes organised by a Flemish university of applied sciences and arts with a minimum of 60 and a maximum of 180 ECTS.

    o    Programmes that are already accredited at the time of submission that will be organised for the first time during academic year 2023-2024 and meet the criteria outlined above.

  • Other Academic Bachelor’s and postgraduate programmes are not eligible.

  • No thematic restriction as to a specific scientific field but on a subject relevant to sustainable development (relevance in relation to Agenda 2030 in a rapidly changing world with emerging challenges and opportunities)

  • Building and strengthening partnerships that can lead to the establishment and operationalisation of international networks

Who can apply?

Affiliation of the promoter

When submitting a project proposal, a promoter must meet both the internal criteria and regulations as to project promotership of their institution and the minimum conditions set by VLIR-UOS.

For the Flemish universities (1):

  • one must be able to be an account holder within one's own institution;

  • one must have a ZAP[1] status (Independent Academic Personnel) at the time of submission, with a minimum appointment level of 10%;

  • postdocs can also submit, depending on the Flemish institution’s internal criteria and on condition that a ZAP member with at least 50% appointment of the institution with whom the contract will be signed is included in the project team as co-promoter;

  • ATP[2] members (Administrative and Technical Personnel) can also submit, depending on the nature of the project and provided they can be account holder within their own institution, without a ZAP member with minimum 50% appointment as co-promoter being part of the project team.

For the Flemish universities of applied sciences and arts (2):

  • The applicant must be a professor/lecturer.

Additional criteria:

  • Only 1 project proposal per Flemish lead promoter can be submitted.

  • Promotors of a current ICP (2022-2027) cannot submit an ICP 2025 project. They can, however, be a co-promoter or be part of a project team.

  • Current ICP Connect projects (2022-2027) cannot submit a new proposal for the educational programme on which the project is based.

  • ICPs that received funding before 2017 but were not selected for ICP Incremental Funding from FYP1 (2017-2022) onwards may apply.

[1] ZAP: Zelfstandig Academisch Personeel (Independent Academic Personnel)
[2] ATP: Administratief en technisch personeel (Administrative and Technical Personnel)

Partner & scholarship countries

Partnerships with institutions from the partner country list:

A partner institution should be a higher education or science institution located in one of our 17 project partner countries: Benin, Bolivia, Burundi, Cuba, DR Congo, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Kenya, Morocco, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Vietnam

This list of possible network partners' countries should be considered when creating the ICP Connect project strategy.

Scholarships for students from the scholarship country list:

The scholarships aim to facilitate the participation of attendants coming from the VLIR-UOS scholarship country list. A reasonable cross-section of scholars from different countries and regions is targeted, provided there are sufficient qualified candidates. In the case of equally qualified candidates, preference will be given to candidates from vulnerable groups (Leave No One Behind). A balance 40%- 60% gender ratio as an overall guideline between male and female candidates awarded ICP Connect scholarships is targeted.

This list of potential scholars' countries should be considered when creating the ICP Connect project strategy.

Budgetary framework

Selection is valid for a five-year period, with conditional renewal for another five-year term.

The project budget amounts to a maximum yearly budget of:

  • € 150,000 (for programmes of 120/180 ECTS);

  • € 125,000 (for programmes of 90 ECTS);

  • € 100,000 (for programmes of 60 ECTS),

with flexibility in budgeting over the 5 years, starting from the respective maximum of €750,000, € 625,000, € 500,000.

One-time bonus for inter-institutional programmes: a complementary budget of 20,000 EUR

The scholarship budget amounts to a maximum yearly intake of:

  • Annual intake of 12 / 10 new 1st year scholarships per study programme per academic year (Phase 1/2) (for programmes of 60-90-120 ECTS);

  • Annual intake of 8 / 7 new 1st year scholarships per programme per academic year (Phase 1/2) (for programmes of 180 ECTS)

Project duration

2 x 5 years - maximum of 10 years in total.

Phase 1 focuses on the exploration and development and implementation of the ICP Connect strategy. Phase 2 focuses on consolidation, valorisation and sustaining the network.

Projects can move to Phase 2 on the condition of good performance, as will be assessed during a mid-term evaluation and on the basis of the assessment of a Phase 2 project proposal.

Two-stage procedure

Project submission in two stages:

  1. Stage 1 - Concept note: focus on a narrative description of the sustainable development challenges the project wishes to address, overall strategy for the integration of global perspectives, partnership and network dimensions into the educational programme, project objectives and scientific approach (research and pedagogical methods, type of multidisciplinary and community-based approach,…). No operational and budget details.

    Max. 10 selected projects go to Stage 2.

  2. Stage 2 - Final proposal: fully developed Theory of Change, intermediate changes and activities, risk and stakeholder analysis, roles and responsibilities, and budgeting.

    Max. 6 selected ICP Connect projects.

Important dates


How to submit a proposal?

Who? An application involves a Flemish promoter. The Flemish promoter, both from a Flemish university or Flemish university of applied sciences & arts, submits the application to the Institutional Coordinators for Development Cooperation (ICOS) of the Flemish university (association) for quality control. The ICOS will grant access to the submission tool to the promoter, and validate and submit the proposal to VLIR-UOS.

How? Project applications are submitted via the VLIR-UOS online submission tool.

Deadline for submission 13 October 2023 at 17:00hrs.

We organised an online training on the tool for submitting your proposal. 

You can find the recording in the video manual library.

Assessment procedure

All project proposals will be assessed by the VLIR-UOS Selection Commission for ICP Connect/ITP based on four standard selection criteria: Relevance and coherence of the project; Quality of the project design; Implementation set-up of the project; Potential impact and sustainability.

Since ICP Connect projects emerge from accredited study programmes, the emphasis is on the strategy to delocalize study material to local partners and to establish an international network.

Start of the project

Selected projects will be able to start as of 1 September 2025. The communication campaign for scholarships for the academic year 2024-2025 can be launched from June 2024 onwards.

Did you miss the information session or do you need details on the call? Check it here.





ICP Connect 2025 Theory of Change

ICP Connect 2025 Information Session - Full Video