The French National Research Agency Projects for science

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Projects and Results2013 and previous editionsSocial Sciences and Humanities

2013 and previous editions

Social Sciences and Humanities

The area of Social Sciences and the Humanities brings together many scientific disciplines which have a common trunk in the study of men and women and the societies in which they live (although the disciplines that study animal behaviour can also be considered to belong to this area). Their characteristic is that they use very different theories and methods, have distinct scientific histories and are practiced by researchers in institutions with diverging rules. For a long time practised applying the method of discrete commitment to a research theme, they have gradually evolved towards more collective approaches within laboratories.

ANR has helped change this research landscape. The culture of collective projects has become generalised. The number of projects submitted each year – about 700 – testifies the strong support from the researchers. The establishing of partnerships between research teams has developed; the share of projects led by a single team has dropped to the point where they constitute only a very small proportion of the applications, irrespective of the discipline. Multidisciplinarity has increased within the area: nearly two-thirds of the projects are submitted by researchers from at least two disciplinary horizons.

The programme planning choices are based on the needs expressed by the researchers and the various institutional partners concerned by research in the SSH. The calls for proposals, initially devoted to fundamental research in the domain extend to the partnership with the other scientific disciplines and the institutions of economic, social and cultural life.

ANR's contribution to the enhancing of the internationalisation of SSH stems from two priorities: a) widely opening all the processes (programme planning or evaluation through the expert assessments and evaluation panels) - to foreign scientists, and b) developing bilateral or multilateral cooperation programmes so that French researchers can cooperate with the best international partners for their projects.