Brilliant Marine Research Idea grants

Brilliant Marine Research Idea grant 2024

Every year, The Sea as Good Cause awards Brilliant Marine Research Idea (BMRI) grants with the aim of inspiring and supporting PhD students and young postdocs to realise a brilliant idea in the context of their marine research. The grant focuses on out-of-the-box thinking, developing an additional research topic framed within the scientist's current personal research field. A BMRI grant is worth EUR 5.000.
Marine research is the field where innovation from science and industry reinforce each other, which is why we invite companies to sponsor a BMRI grant.

Our contribution: awarding BMRI grants worth EUR 5.000 to young marine scientists. We fund ideas that contribute to solving hypothesis-based marine research questions.

The themes on which The Sea as Good Cause works focus on -but are not limited to- climate change (the ocean-climate-biodiversity nexus), ocean health and the ocean's relationship with human health, complemented by cross-cutting themes such as exploration, marine observations and technological innovation.

The grant helps with lab and/or field work, data acquisition and analysis, visits to other institutes for the use of specialised facilities, purchase of necessary equipment or software, etc. The fund cannot be used to reimburse the use of existing infrastructure within one's own research group, for personnel costs, to pay for travel expenses that exceed 50% of the grant or to attend conferences.

Who is eligible for a BMRI grant? PhD students and junior postdocs affiliated to a Flemish university or university college. As well as PhD students from the Global South with a clearly demonstrable link to a Flemish Marine Research Group, with the additional requirement that the PhD student either obtained a degree from an international marine master's programme in Flanders or the PhD student is conducting research via a sandwich doctoral grant. The exact modalities for being eligible for a BMRI grant can be read in the call for proposals.

Brilliant Marine Research Idea grants 2024

sponsored by HAEDES

Call closed. The laureates were announced during the VLIZ Marine Science Day on March 6 2024.

The new call for the 2025 BMRI grants will open in autumn 2024. Keep an eye on the VLIZ's communication channels.


Donate to support young marine scientists with a BMRI grant
Your donation serves to enable orginial research by young marine scientists through the BMRI grants. Donations can be made via the webshop or by transferring money to the philanthropy account of Flanders Marine Institute: BE70 0017 1687 3425 with the reference 'Gift for BMRI grant'. Donations of EUR 40 or more per year are tax deductible.

Do you wish to sponsor a BMRI grant? Through sponsorship, a company encourages young marine researchers to fully engage in original research and endorses the importance of innovation. The sponsor indicates which field of research it wishes to support and also gets the possibility to participate in jurying. The Sea as a Good Cause takes care of the entire organisation and administration and, in mutual agreement, provides the necessary visibility for the sponsor. The sponsorship amount of a BMRI grant is EUR 6,000 excluding VAT. Every year, we conclude the sponsorship contracts by 15 October. Contact us at for further details.

BMRI laureaat

BMRI grants 2017-2023
Since the launch of the Brilliant Marine Research Idea concept in 2017, we awarded 28 grants, totalling EUR 140.000 for marine research! The laureates' expertise includes biology, geology, psychology, ecotoxicology, aquaculture, marine engineering, nautical sciences, biochemistry, etc. In most cases, the laureate contains the research in an A1 publication and it forms part of the PhD thesis.
Find out who the winning PhD students and young postdocs were who previously had the opportunity to develop a brilliant research idea through a BMRI grant. Read their reports and publications available at the VLIZ library catalogue.