Katrin Kello – COST National Coordinator (CNC) for Estonia
Tel: +372 731 7361

Katrin Piller – COST Assistant
Tel: +372 731 7382

Founded in 1971, COST, or European Cooperation in Science and Technology, is Europe’s oldest intergovernmental cooperation in the field. With the support of the Horizon Programme and the member countries, COST helps to bring together researchers and practitioners from many countries and from all fields of research and technology. COST does this through research and innovation networks, or COST Actions (projects) that help to connect existing research initiatives, and to open new R&I avenues. Estonia joined COST in 1997.

COST Actions are bottom-up networks (projects) with a duration of four years. Their aim is to boost research, innovation and careers. Through them, COST Association does not fund research and innovation itself, but rather the expenses of networking: for example organising meetings, training schools, short term scientific missions (STSMs), and similar. COST also covers certain dissemination costs.

New action proposals are collected through Open Calls usually once a year.

COST rules for applicants as well as for ongoing actions are explained on the COST Documents and Guidelines page: the most comprehensive overview of the COST rules can be found in the Annotated rules for COST Actions.

Note that COST Action participation is individual (rather than institutional) and a person does not need to be a proposer to participate in a COST Action. Guidance on how to join an approved or already ongoing Action is available on each action’s page on COST website (How to participate?) or on an action’s own website as soon as the website is established.

Please read about various aspects of COST on COST website, or contact the National Coordinator (contact details above).


How to join a COST Action (for those who did not act as co-applicants/secondary proposers in the Action’s proposal)

Joining COST Actions has changed to some extent since 2021. The first step for joining a COST Action is to apply to join one or several of the Working Groups on the Action’s page on the COST website (the Working Groups and Membership tab). The Working Groups are outlined in the MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) document on the same page. To join also the Management Committee of the Action, write to the Main Proposer of the Action as well as to the Estonia’s COST coordinator (see the steps below). There is a maximum of two positions for each country in the MC. MC participation is voluntary, but recommended if possible (in case of vacant positions), as it gives an overview of the Action as a whole and allows to have a say in the overall decisions. MC member status also enables to take part at the Action’s kick-off meeting. On the other hand, Working Group membership has gained importance and visibility since 2021.

The three levels of COST Action participation (ad hoc participation, WG membership, and MC membership) are thoroughly explained in the Annotated Rules for COST Actions n the COST Documents and Guidelines page.

Steps for joining the Management Committee (MC):

  1. Complete the application to join the Working Group(s) on the Working Groups and Membership tab (see above).
  2. Check on the Management Committee tab if an Estonia’s seat could be vacant in the MC (up to two positions per country). Note that the public view does not reflect pending nominations.
  3. Contact the Main Proposer (the Main Contacts and Leadership tab) as well as Estonia’s COST Coordinator ( to confirm if there is a vacant MC position available for Estonia.
  4. Should a position prove to be vacant, fill in the MC Expression of Interest Form in English or in Estonian.

Estonia’s criteria for nominating MC members are explained here at the Estonian version of this website.

Interesting bits and pieces:

Collage of ideas and experiences related to COST:

A call to share ideas about COST and the experience of participating in COST