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eLTER PLUS TA/RA Scheme now open: Get free access to a selection of eEurope sites

Our H2020 project eLTER PLUS now offers free-of-charge opportunities to perform your desired research making use of a selection of LTER-Europe sites handpicked for the purpose of small to medium scale ecological and socio-ecological projects.

Types of access offered:

Transnational Access (TA) - this option secures in-person, physical, hands-on work by users at one or more of the LTER sites involved in the scheme.

Remote Access (RA) – gives an option for protocols regarding measurements, data collection, and possibly experiments to be defined by users and performed on their behalf by site staff.

For their proposals, eLTER PLUS encourages users to combine TA- and RA-related project work where they can test hands-on and refine a protocol they’ve developed at one site and then have the same protocol performed at other sites remotely.

Sites involved



Czech Republic:


















United Kingdom:



Important dates

  • Call opening: 15 October 2020
  • Deadline for Submissions: 23 December 2020
  • Evaluation and notification of outcome: 31 March 2021

Successful projects typically are conducted during the summer season, but users may choose any timing starting as early as April.

What is provided?

All sites included in the eLTER PLUS (Transnational Access) TA and (Remote Access) RA Scheme are equipped with state-of-the-art instrumentation to enable comprehensive ecological measurement and experimental campaigns. The long-term data on those sites is available to compare with or to be used as a reference. Likewise, state-of-the-art socio-economic research is conducted at several of them. IT facilities are provided for data upload, storage and processing. The sites, which were selected to represent all European biogeographic zones, are described at the eLTER PLUS website and in the eLTER Site Catalogue.

While the scheme will support both single-site and multiple-site projects (i.e. requiring co-ordinated work and data synthesis across two or more sites), preference will be given to research targeting multi-site use and taking advantage of the eLTER site network.

For more information, consult the blog articles written by users of previous TA schemes offered by eLTER.

Financial support

The eLTER PLUS TA/ RA scheme offers free of charge access to the site(s) and all the services provided by them.

For site visits within the scheme (TA), users will also receive reimbursement of travel expenses to, from and within the site. Private or rental car travel will be supported if travel by public transport is not possible.

If possible, on-site accommodation and/or on-site meals will be offered at no cost to the user. If not, the costs of reasonable accommodation in the vicinity of the site will be reimbursed and costs for food as well (see subsistence rates).

Users’ personnel costs will not be covered.

Selection criteria

The selection criteria will mainly consider:

  • Scientific excellence of the work proposed
  • The involvement of promising young scientists at the start of their career
  • Feasibility of the proposed application in accordance with the site manager
  • Formal eligibility in line with European Commission H2020 access regulations.

A selection and review panel will carefully evaluate the proposals received in order to enable transparent, fair and impartial reviews of applications.

Question-driven research

For its TA/RA scheme, eLTER PLUS has predefined a set of research-questions within the following thematic categories:

  • Drivers, trends and states of biodiversity
  • Carbon and nitrogen cycling in ecosystems
  • Water stress in ecosystems
  • Socio-ecology

Proposers may address one or more of our recommended research questions within this framework.

Likewise, users are encouraged to define their own research questions to demonstrate further options to utilise the eLTER Research Infrastructure.


How do I apply?

  1. Read the scheme details carefully - The TA scheme's administrative, operational and financial procedures are described in this document (PDF file).
  2. Fill in the Proposal template - Users wishing to request access must fill in this form (MS Word file).
  3. Submit the form as Word format (do not save as PDF) to our TA e-mail address elter-ta@helsinki.fi
  4. If you want to contact us regarding access or should you have any other questions regarding the scheme, please use the same address.

Reporting requirements

After completing their site visit, researchers must provide a report, using the Reporting template (MS Word file).