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Closed call 2020-10-13: Demonstrator projects

This is a first call for Demonstrator projects within Digital Futures – projects that can demonstrate and disseminate technologies for digital transformation and its impact in society. We will support projects that can show novelty, high impact and wide outreach. KTH schools, Stockholm University (SU) and RISE Digital Systems are encouraged to apply.

Important dates:

Call opens: 11 June, 2020

Call closes: 13 October, 2020,14:00

The decision on the Digital Futures Demonstrator projects is planned for late November 2020. The earliest start of projects is December 2020.


KTH has been tasked by the government to establish a strategic research environment for interdisciplinary research on the future technology for digitization in the research policy (2016) and budget (2017) bills. According to those, a faculty funding initiative in digitization corresponding to 78 MSEK per year has been established in January 2020 under the name Digital Futures. During the preparatory phase in 2019, several cross-disciplinary pilot research projects have been launched already on research related to e.g. digital assistants in care for the elderly, managing sensitive personal data, smart solutions for water distribution and programmable microscale robotic matter. Digital Futures consists of researchers from all schools of KTH as well as from Stockholm University, RISE and external partners. The centre is located in the award-winning building of the Architecture school at KTH Campus and is led by Professor Karl H Johansson.

Purpose and eligibility

Digital Futures targets several KPIs, societal outreach being one of the core KPIs. Societal outreach entails contributions to the public (political) discourse, public lectures, consulting to public agencies and institutions, presence in print and in social media. Demonstrator projects are the main instrument of Digital Futures to foster this KPI. The purpose of these projects is to demonstrate and disseminate technologies for digital transformation and show their impact and potential in society. The results are expected to be disseminated in high impact venues with wide reach, such as national television, press or more specialist venues with international reach.

Demonstrator projects are also expected to contribute to industrial transfer as a secondary KPI. Industrial transfer as KPI materializes for instance in terms of follow-up transfer grants (on national and European level, impact on industrial research and development, patents, standardization and/or open source contributions, as well as industrial-academic mobility.

The output of these projects could include

  1. Prototype software systems (preferably open source), demonstrators, and digital services
  2. Development of an artifact for experimental evaluation and demonstration of research, including physical prototypes and demonstrators for public use
  3. Integration of novel algorithms and methods from research into a testbed or real system within industry or public sector
  4. An evaluation or study of the impact of novel digital technologies

The projects should

  1. Demonstrate technologies with significant potential societal impact
  2. Demonstrate the results in at least one high-impact event at the end of the project and provide a preliminary demonstration after one year
  3. Involve researchers, competences, data and resources that enable interdisciplinary research and demonstrations.

We strongly encourage projects to collaborate with external partners and testbeds and expect all projects to be able to display results at Digital Future events and at the centre.

To encourage inter-disciplinarity and collaboration, each project should list two PIs of complementary backgrounds. The researchers should belong to either i) two different KTH schools, ii) KTH school and RISE/SU, or iii) RISE and SU. The proposals shall address subject areas at the intersection of the Digital Futures Research matrix illustrated in Figure 1. The targeted societal context and the most relevant scientific context(s) shall be stated in the project proposal.

Digital Futures Strategic matrix

Figure 1. The three research themes Trust, Cooperate and Learn cut across the three societal contexts Smart society, Digitized industry and Rich and healthy life.

How to apply

  1. Fill in the application according to the project description template: DOWNLOAD PROJECT DESCRIPTION TEMPLATE HERE
  2. Send the application to before 13 October, 2020,14:00.

Application Process

In this call up to six projects are indented to be selected. The duration of the projects is two years. The projects will be funded with a maximum of 2MSEK (1MSEK/year). Please note the Digital Futures funding policy: Within Digital Futures the funding per PI is limited to 1 MSEK/year. Researchers can be involved in several projects under different instruments.

Questions can be directed to the same email or to


  1. Potential for societal outreach as well as industrial transfer: Degree of novelty with respect to KPI, KPI impact and outreach, scientific interest, and degree of interdisciplinary of the demonstrator proposed.
  2. Feasibility and project plan, including access to data, testbeds and other infrastructure necessary to complete the project as well as composition of the proposed research group and external collaboration partners.
  3. Dissemination and outreach plan. Scope, audience and visibility of the demonstration event(s) or method.
  4. Conformity to the scope of Digital Futures and eligibility as outlined above.

The project proposals will be evaluated by an external expert panel. A mid-term evaluation will be performed after one year at which time a decision on continued funding of the project will be taken.

Demonstrator Project Information Meeting

An information meeting was held online on 18 June, 2020 at 15:00-16:00.

Demonstrator Project Matchmaking Event

Digital Futures is hosting a “Demonstrator Matchmaking” on-line event, open to all potential project applicants, demonstrators, and testbeds, to help with the creation of proposals.

14 September, 2020, 15.00 – 17.00, (zoom link will be provided)

22 September, 2020, 15.00 – 17.00, (zoom link will be provided)

Please register before 10 September and indicate which date you will particpate: ​​​​​​​