Literary creation grant

Applications can be submitted from: 1 July

Target group
Practitioner with connection to Switzerland
Submission deadline
1 March and 1 September


Development of a project intended for publication (including digital formats) in the genres of fiction, children’s and youth literature, poetry, drama and spoken word

For Whom

  • Individuals and collectives
  • Authors must have published at least one independent literary work with a publishing house that has professional structures or in a digital medium with editorial supervision.
  • Playwrights must have had at least one premiere in a recognised venue.
  • Spoken word authors must have proof that they have previously authored professional performances of national significance.

Selection Criteria

  • Artistically independent, methodological approach and content-related relevance
  • Impressive artistic form for the project and impact objective
  • Coherent implementation concept and feasibility

In addition to these specific criteria, the apply.

Financial Contribution

  • Maximum grant for a writing project: CHF 25,000
  • Maximum grant for a performative literary project: CHF 15,000

Content Of Application

  • CV and bibliography
  • Project description
  • Twenty pages of the planned text for fiction projects
  • Fifteen poems for poetry projects
  • Four to eight plates and a meaningful excerpt of the text for illustrated texts
  • Five pages plus audio and/or video material for spoken-word projects

Format-specific Exclusion Criteria

  • The project must be completed no earlier than nine months and no later than three years after the application closing date (manuscript submission)
  • Performance projects may be realised no earlier than six months before and no later than two years after the application closing date
  • Recipients of creation grants may only reapply for a creation grant after the project has been completed
  • Rejected projects may not be resubmitted

Application Deadlines and Decision Timelines

Applications can be submitted from1 January and 1 July
Submission deadline1 March and 1 September
Notification of decisionWithin four months after the application deadline

Decision-making processes

The applications will be assessed by a jury.

Applications can be submitted from: 1 July

Image by Dirk Koy

General Requirements


Pro Helvetia promotes the professional contemporary Swiss art and cultural production (without film) with a view to diversity as well as national and international reach. It supports the creation of new artistic works and productions, the exchange between Switzerland’s various linguistic regions, the dissemination of Swiss art and culture outside Switzerland and international cultural exchange. As a national foundation, Pro Helvetia supplements the promotional activities of Swiss cantons and municipalities and only supports projects that are cross-regionally or internationally recognised.

Pro Helvetia will only consider funding applications if they are complete and have been submitted on time.

To be eligible for support, projects must

  • have a clear connection to Switzerland
  • be of nationwide importance
  • be adequately co-funded by other public or private means
  • respects/guarantee fair working conditions

Connection to Switzerland

A connection to Switzerland is given, if one of the following conditions is met:

  • The production or project in question is developed or implemented by artists and cultural practitioners, who verifiably hold Swiss citizenship or are permanent residents of Switzerland and who are regularly artistically involved in relevant events in Switzerland.
  • The project is created, developed, or implemented by an independent group or cultural institution whose place of production is in Switzerland and who is regularly and publicly active in Switzerland.

Nationwide relevance

Nationwide relevance is given, if one of the following conditions is met:

  • The art and cultural practitioners participating in the project are regularly involved in programmes of nationally recognised art and cultural institutions in Swiss regions other than their own or abroad, and the project in question has a transregional appeal.
  • The artistic potential of an emerging art practitioner involved is exceptional in terms of a national or international career.
  • The project makes a significant contribution to the development of Swiss artistic and cultural production and its dissemination.
  • The project is of significant importance for the exchange between Switzerland’s various linguistic regions.

Assessment of content and quality

Within the framework of the available funds, Pro Helvetia prioritises projects that most comprehensively meet the funding criteria. The Foundation assesses whether

  • the project demonstrates high degree of independence and professional competence as well as social and thematic relevance
  • the project is implemented according to professional standards
  • the costs are commensurate with the expected impact
  • a lasting impact can be expected

Furthermore, the Foundation attaches great importance to the following aspects:

  • The project has an appropriate commitment to diversity.
  • Resources are used in an ecologically responsible manner and work and production are planned sustainably.


Pro Helvetia is unable to consider funding requests if

  • the same part of the submitted project is already received funding from other federal bodies (e.g. Federal Office of Culture, Presence Switzerland, Swiss National Science Foundation, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation)
  • the project is part of a school or university curriculum/basic training or continuing education programme (including dissertations, diploma projects, university scholarships, etc.)
  • funding is intended to cover infrastructure and equipment costs, as well as the costs of operating cultural facilities, archives and collections
  • the project does not depend on funding from Pro Helvetia

Status: January 2024