Fulbright Scholar Program

Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program Catalog of Awards

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Fulbright Distinguished Scholar Award

Fulbright-Saastamoinen Foundation Distinguished Chair in Health Sciences

Europe and Eurasia


Award Details
Award Activity

The Fulbright-Saastamoinen Foundation Distinguished Chair position provides U.S. scholars with the opportunity to conduct research at the University of Eastern Finland (UEF) at the Faculty of Health Sciences. The Chair position is available for scholars and specialists in any field of Health Sciences, but priority will be given to research work in Cardiovascular Diseases and/or Metabolic Diseases.

The research area at UEF boasts an extensive international network of partners in Europe and the U.S. The specified research area focuses on the pathophysiology, genetics, molecular mechanisms, prevention and novel treatments of these diseases by using modern methods in molecular biology, genetics, nutrition, translational medicine and gene transfer. The research area comprises researchers from the fields of internal medicine, clinical nutrition, molecular medicine, vascular biology and cardiology. It brings together researchers from UEF and Kuopio University Hospital, and is closely linked to the activities of the Academy of Finland Centre of Excellence in Cardiovascular and Metabolic Disease, the Genome Center of Eastern Finland, and the National Virus Vector Laboratory.

The Scholar has an opportunity to serve as a resource for doctoral students as well.

The Chair and the UEF faculty will work together in designing the Chair’s activities.

Applicants are advised to include an invitation letter from the relevant unit at UEF in their application as well as a research plan in the project statement of the Distinguished Chair application. Proposals for medical research involving clinical training, patient care, or patient contact are not eligible.

The Fulbright-Saastamoinen Foundation Distinguished Chair is jointly funded by the Saastamoinen Foundation and the Fulbright Finland Foundation (the Finnish Fulbright commission).

Scholars selected for this award can choose to:
  • Advise and/or mentor students
  • Assist in faculty, curriculum, and/or program development
  • Conduct a professional and/or artistic project
  • Conduct a research project designated by the host institution
  • Conduct a research project of the applicant’s choosing
  • Teach graduate and/or undergraduate courses designated by the host institution
  • Teach graduate and/or undergraduate courses of the applicant’s choosing
Award Length and Period

Two months; please see Flex Option.

Grants should begin no earlier than September 2022. The grant periods will be agreed together with the Chair, host Professor, and UEF Unit according to the guidelines of the Fulbright Finland Foundation and taking into account the four-day Fulbright-hosted orientation for scholars at the end of August.


The University of Eastern Finland is one of the largest universities in Finland; we are home to approximately 15,500 students and 2,500 members of staff. The university has two campuses in the cities of Joensuu and Kuopio, located 400 kilometers northeast of Helsinki. The Faculty of Health Sciences is located on the Kuopio campus.

UEF’s campuses are significant research and innovation centers and in close vicinity there are several national-level research institutes as well as the Kuopio University Hospital, the European Forest Institute in Joensuu, and technology parks and knowledge-based enterprises.

Kuopio and its surroundings are known for their nature and quality of life, know-how, science and technology and, of course, the character of its people. The beautiful nature and pleasant living environment, with excellent services, makes Kuopio an attractive place to live. Water and forests dominate the landscape. Kuopio is also an important university city and one of the national centers of expertise.

Joensuu is a lively urban hub, where science, technology and industry, as well as public bodies, together form an open ecosystem, where new actors are welcome. In summer, Joensuu is fashioned by the Karelian lifestyle of the River Pielisjoki, flowing through the lively city center. Also in Joensuu, water and forests are close by giving a vast array of means to explore nature.

Flex Option
Flex Description

The grant is awarded as a Flex grant for two visits of one month each over two consecutive years.

The Flex Award is designed for scholars who require multiple visits to the host country. This option allows grants to be conducted over short segments, preferably during the fall and/or spring semesters.

Applicants should clearly indicate plans for Flex in their project statement, including a project timeline. Flex grantees may be asked to give public talks, mentor students, and otherwise engage with the host-country academic community.

Flex grant parameters:

  • Total grant length is two months;
  • Length of each grant segment is one month;
  • Two grant segments must be spread over two consecutive years; and
  • Flex awards are offered for teaching/research and research grants.
Discipline Type
Only projects in the following disciplines will be considered
Medical Sciences
Public Health
Areas of Interest

The Chair position is available for scholars and specialists in any field of the Health Sciences or interdisciplinary areas with a specific focus on Health Sciences; priority will be given to research work in Cardiovascular Diseases and/or Metabolic Diseases.

Special Features

The University of Eastern Finland provides the Chair and his/her family with free housing and working facilities at the University. The Chair will be provided with a monthly grant, round-trip travel, and an accident and sickness insurance for the grant period.

Additionally, the Fulbright-Saastamoinen Foundation grantee will receive the full support services provided by the Fulbright Finland Foundation for all Fulbright grantees in Finland.

Application Deadline
Activity Type

Research includes activities involving scientific research, qualitative research, quantitative research, and practice-based research, including artistic research. Research can take place in locations such as the laboratory, the field, the archives, or an artist residency. It can be experimental, clinical, or applied. It can include examining policies, systems, theories, methods, interactions, and works of art and music, with the objective to evaluate or develop new knowledge or works. Quantifiable (tangible) outcomes can include publications (books, journal articles, scripts, etc.), conference presentations, artistic and musical compositions, exhibitions, performances, films, and patents.

Degree Requirements
Ph.D. (or other terminal degree) required
Career Profile
Mid-Career Academics

Awards are open to those who have been working in the capacity of a teacher or scholar for more than seven, and less than 13, years.

Senior Academics

Awards are open to those who have been working in the capacity of a teacher or scholar for more than 13 years.

Number of Recipients
Up To 2
Program Staff
Jaclyn Assarian
Outreach and Recruitment Specialist

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