Scientific Exchange Programme (Sciex) Bulgaria

Project completed
A woman working in a laboratory at a microscope.
Dr Ivanka Dimova carried out research at the University of Bern for one year as part of the scholarship programme. Here in the laboratory the Bulgarian doctor studies embryonic cells under the microscope. © SDC DEZA/SECO

The Scientific Exchange Programme between the New Member States and Switzerland, for short, has given over 500 young researchers from new EU member states the opportunity to complete a short-term residency in Switzerland to further their research.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Promoting economic growth and improving working conditions
Research and Development
01.06.2011 - 31.12.2017
CHF  2’000’000

Note: the texts under all the headings, with the exception of 'Results achieved', describe the situation before the start of the project.


On 7 December 2009, the Swiss Parliament voted on a bill concerning the Swiss Enlargement Contribution in support of the new European Union Member States, aimed at increasing the pertinent framework credit by CHF 257 million so as to extend the Contribution to the benefit of Bulgaria and Romania (CHF 76 million for Bulgaria and CHF 181 million for Romania). Within this context, the framework agreement foresees the establishment of a fund in the amount of CHF 2 million to finance scholarships for young Bulgarian research scientists who have been admitted to Swiss research institutes



To contribute to the reduction of the economic and social disparities in the enlarged European Union by supporting the professional and scientific competencies of the young researchers from the beneficiary countries and to foster sustainable cooperation between Switzerland and the beneficiary countries.


(i): to develop the individual capacities of the young researchers (human capital); (ii): to encourage scientific progress and innovation (forward-looking scientific prospects); (iii): to establish and strengthen the networks between Swiss and Bulgarian researchers


Achieved results:  

  • 22 scholarships for research in Switzerland supported and closed under this initiative.
  • Sciex Fellowship boosted the scientific career of promising young researchers. All Sciex fellows highly appreciated the opportunity of carrying out part of their research with a Swiss institution.
  • From the perspective of the scientific networks, both Bulgarian and Swiss research community had through the Sciex Programme the opportunity to experience cooperation and to establish sustainable collaborations.



Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Swiss Contribution to the enlarged EU
Project partners Contract partner
Swiss Academic and Research Institution
  • Other Swiss academic and research institutions

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    2’000’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    1’878’597
Project phases

Phase 1 01.06.2011 - 31.12.2017   (Completed)