Infrastructure initiatives



Infrastructure initiatives are defined as resources that enable the research community to address specific research questions. The research questions in itself are not part of the infrastructure initiative.

KWF Kankerbestrijding encourages the collaboration between infrastructure initiatives. In the infrastructure initiatives call 2021 emphasis will be given at establishing a single, national platform for early detection and diagnosis of rare cancers. By a platform is meant the logistics to support the development of resources applicable to a group of rare cancers. The national character of the platform should be demonstrated by its nationwide coverage, support and access.

The infrastructure initiatives call 2021 is aimed at establishing a resource that exceeds single types of rare cancer. Nonetheless, it is not necessarily aimed at addressing the logistics applicable to all rare cancers.

In alignment with the definition used at the European level, rare cancers are classified as those with an incidence of less than 6 per 100,000 persons per year. (source: RareCancersEuropeIKNL)

Within Scope

The platform will function as technology-driven expertise hub, allowing to address the following aspects:

  • Understanding the biology/ mechanisms that underpin (groups of) rare cancers
  • Accelerating the discovery and validation of biomarkers for early detection of rare cancers
  • Developing technologies that enable detection of robust and informative signals
  • Encouraging an integrated and multidisciplinary approach, from innovative technology development to diagnostic validation in clinical settings
  • Supporting capacity building and training and thereby, strengthening the rare cancer research community

Additional conditions

  • The (potential) applicability of the resource developed in the platform for early detection and diagnosis of a group of rare cancers to rare subtypes of common cancers has to be clearly formulated
  • In case of an already existing European initiative, the link between the platform for early detection and diagnosis of rare cancers and the European/International initiative(s) has to be clearly demonstrated
  • The link to an existent (data) infrastructure has to be clearly elaborated, in accordance with the FAIR principles for data sharing
  • In line with Open Science Policy, the data generated within the platform is to be deposited in an (inter)national public repository

Out of scope

  • Validation of drugable targets for orphan medicines production is out of scope of the infrastructure initiatives call 2021

Indicative budget

The indicative total budget allocated to the infrastructure initiatives call 2021 is 5.000.000 EUR.

Based on the evaluation of pre-proposals, KWF Kankerbestrijding may advise applicants to merge proposals to a single application. 

Further Information

Please consult the KWF Guidelines 2021 for further information on the characteristics and eligibility terms for the Infrastructure Initiatives funding type.

Timeline (due to the coronacrisis the call has been extended!)

Opening pre-proposal submission​     8 May 2020
Closing pre-proposal submission​   12 August (12.00 noon)
Full proposal    
Opening full proposal submission​   21 September 2020
Closing full proposal submission   4 November 2020 (12.00 noon)
Funding decision          March 2021


Funded projects