Short-Term Scientific Missions (STSMs)

Call for STSM Proposals

The Multi3Generation COST Action is implementing a rolling deadline for STSM submissions. We have a monthly call for proposals ending on the last day of each month, and we invite the research community to submit STSM proposals on relevant topics at any time. More information about STSMs and the Multi3Generation COST Action are found on our website. Multi3Generation is a network of researchers working on different aspects of natural language generation, and STSMs funded by Multi3Generation must contribute to its scientific mission. In a time of restrictions to large face-to-face meetings, STSM visits are a great opportunity for researchers to work together in-person while keeping risks to a minimum (given careful and responsible planning; see below).

Short summary: STSMs are short research visits where one person travels and visits a host in an European institution to work on a short-term research project (for up to 3 months). The visit is funded by the Multi3Generation COST Action, which can grant up to 3,500 EUR per applicant. The Multi3Generation COST Action can grant a maximum of 160 EUR per day of the STSM research visit to account for accommodation and meal expenses.

Very important: applicants and hosts must make sure they follow national and European regulations and recommendations regarding the COVID pandemic, travelling, social distancing, and other requirements. For more information, see the COST EU website.


We invite STSM applications to conduct work on any research topic related to the Multi3Generation COST Action. We have five working groups, four of which are research-oriented (WG1-WG4). A non-exhaustive list of topics we are interested in includes:

  1. grounded multimodal reasoning and generation;
  2. efficient machine learning algorithms, methods, and applications to language generation;
  3. dialogue, interaction, and conversational language generation;
  4. exploiting large knowledge bases and graphs.


The core STSM proposal document should include: aim & motivation, expected outcomes, contribution to the Action’s scientific objectives, techniques (if applicable), planning/timetable including begin and end dates, estimated budget requested in Euros (according to the STSM grant rules in the COST Vademecum), and information about the host institution (name, address, and person).

The STSM proposal must be written and its submission must be done by the applicant, i.e. the potential visitor, and in agreement with the potential host. Importantly, the host must provide written agreement that she/he will host the STSM applicant to perform the activities detailed in the submitted proposal within the agreed dates. A suggested pipeline for the submission is: the applicant writes the proposal and sends it to the host; the host sends the applicant an email formally agreeing to the proposal, which can then be included by the applicant as part of the submitted STSM application document.


In Section 8.1 of the COST Vademecum there is information on who can be applicants and who can be host institutions for STSMs. Please refer to it for eligibility criteria, and also please make sure you refer to the most recent version of the Vademecum available (as of the time of writing this document, it is the Vademecum published in April 2021).

Evaluation criteria

Submitted STSM proposals will be evaluated by the 15th day of the next month. The MC will review the proposal and evaluate its scientific merit and how aligned it is to the Action’s objectives. We also propose a fairness policy regarding the distribution of STSM grants. Participants may ordinarily receive one STSM grant per GP only, and we will try to make sure that Early Career Investigators (ECI) and Inclusiveness Target Countries (ITC) are well represented in STSM grants. In case there are funds left at the end of a GP, the MC might consider granting additional STSMs, and exceptionally to participants who have already been granted an STSM in that GP.


After an STSM is finished, a scientific report summarising the main results of the STSM must be written by the applicant and approved by the host. This is mandatory and must be done as soon as the STSM is finished.

Other Information

Other information can be found in the COST Vademecum, Section 8. Please find more information on how to submit an application in the STSM user guide and the COST Vademecum or check this list of documents made public by COST for a broad overview. 

Previous STSMs

During GP1 four Short Term Scientific Missions (STSMs) took place, all of them completed.
  1. Analysis and Introspection of Multilingual Representations. Wei Zhao (TU Darmstadt) visited Isabelle Augenstein (University of Copenhagen).
  2. Image Captioning Using Relational Context from Generated Scene Graphs. Victor Milewski (KU Leuven) visited Iacer Calixto (University of Amsterdam).
  3. Structured Multilingual Language Generation. Johannes Bjerva (University of Copenhagen) visited Robert Östling (Stockholm University).
  4. Fusion Mechanisms in Claim Verification Models. Liesbeth Allien (KU Leuven) visited Isabelle Augenstein (University of Copenhagen).
During GP2 five Short Term Scientific Missions (STSMs) took place, all of them completed.
  1. Natural Language Grounding. François Portet (University of Grenoble) visited Albert Gatt (University of Malta).
  2. Morphological typology awareness in multilingual NLP evaluation. Arturo Oncevay (University of Edinburgh) visited Johannes Bjerva (Aalborg University).
  3. Generating fact-checking explanations in low-resource settings. Shailza Jolly (Technical University of Kaiserslautern) visited Isabelle Augenstein (University of Copenhagen).
    Report of short STSM visit by Shailza Jolly
  4. Enhancing Natural Language Generation with Knowledge Acquisition/Integration. Alkiviadis Katsalis (International Hellenic University) visited Elena Lloret Pastor (University of Alicante).
  5. Exploring the Interplay between Grammatical and Cultural Gender for Debiased Natural Language Generation. Marie Fournier (Stockholm University) visited Johannes Bjerva (Aalborg University).

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