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Estonian literature

The aim of the application round is the creation of favourable conditions for the development of the Estonian art of words, making available classic works that are important in national culture, popularising Estonian literature and internationalisation of the field of literature. 

The basis for the grant is the Minister’s order No. 297 of 30.12.2015. 

The grant may be applied for by:

  • Estonian state and local government authorities that are entered on the register;
  • legal persons governed by public law;
  • legal persons governed by private law and sole proprietors;
  • legal persons of a foreign state for publishing Estonian literature in a foreign language in a foreign state.

At the time of applying the applicant cannot have:


  • tax arrears (incl.  payment arrears) – national tax arrears or interest calculated on the overdue tax amount, except if the payment of the tax arrears is staggered.
  • Arrears of submitting the annual report.
  • An obligation not performed before the ministry (report or other arrears).

Bankruptcy or liquidation proceedings cannot be initiated in respect of the applicant for the grant and he cannot have a valid warning for deletion from the commercial register.
The minimum of the grant allocated from the application round per application is 1000 euros and the maximum is 40 000 euros. The maximum for publishing Estonian literature in a foreign language is 2000 euros per application.

Projects, the share of own and co-financing (the monetary contribution or contribution measurable in money of the recipient of the grant and co-financers) of which makes up at least 25% of the total cost of the project, are supported from the application round.


The application to be submitted to the Ministry of Culture digitally signed to the address (or by post to the address Suur-Karja 23, 15076 Tallinn).

Deadline for submitting the application is 5 February 2016.
Applications together with attachments to be submitted to the Ministry of Culture on the application form of the project grant of the ministry.


  • in case of publishing grants attachment to a non-periodical printed publication (DOC) and the manuscript or a part of it;
  • when applying for a grant for organising writers’ performances and festivals and events a detailed description of the project together with the schedule and programme.

Important notice!
Before filling in the application form, we kindly recommend you to first download the forms onto your computer (both PC and Mac owners) and fill in the forms by using the latest version of free Acrobat Reader programme available HERE.


Asta Trummel – chairman of the committee, literature adviser of the Ministry of Culture
Triin Soone – director of the Estonian Children’s Literature Centre
Kristiina Ross – senior research fellow of the Institute of the Estonian language, literary scientis
Ülle Salumäe – teacher of Estonian language and literature of Tallinn Gustav Adolf Grammar School
Piret Saluri - translator
Krista Aru – literary scientist

Terms and conditions


The following is supported as a project grant in the application round

  • publishing of works of national cultural importance, incl. Estonian language dictionaries, publishing linguistic considerations of broader interest, literature and culture studies, monographs, bibliographies and essayistics and publishing manuscripts that have won prizes in book competitions launched by the Ministry of Culture;
  • performances of Estonian writers in libraries and schools;
  • activities supporting the export and internationalisation of Estonian literature and publishing translations of works important for national culture;
  • carrying out literature festivals and events with international dimensions in Estonia;
  • publishing cultural serials and foreign language periodicals introducing the Estonian culture;
  • digitising of classics and other texts that are important to national culture and publishing as an e-book. The following principles and procedure for applying form the basis for supporting the specified activity:
    •  e-books that have received the grant are distributed for free. If they are works, the copyrights of which are in force (less than 70 years has passed from the death of the author), then the applicant must submit the permission of the owner of the copyright about the free propagation of the e-book in a format, which can be reproduced;
    • the applicant submits to the Ministry of Culture a list of the titles, which are wished to be published as an e-book. From the submitted lists the commission selects texts and/or collections of texts of national cultural importance. When allocating grants the committee favours collections prepared of e-books, the selection of which has been systematised and considers different readers, incl. has considered different age groups in children’s literature and recommended literature of schools;
    • the cost for each e-book separately must be shown in the application;
    • the recipient undertakes to make an e-book in the e-pub file format of the chosen titles (e-pub 2.0.1 or a later version, invalid e-pubs are not accepted, the freeware programme “Epubcheck” may be used for validating e-pub);
    • the front cover and title page of the e-book must be designed according to the design ordered by the Ministry of Culture. Advertising must not be added to the e-book in the process of creating the e-book;
    •  the e-book must be integral (except cover design) and contain illustrations contained in the print issue (if a book is submitted, which has been published on paper before). On assigning the e-pub the source material with original design that was the basis for creating the e-pub in (PDF or TIFF) format must also be delivered;
    • e-books must be submitted to the digital archive DIGAR of the National Library of Estonia. E-books that have received the grant are made available to the public through the digital archive DIGAR of the National Library of Estonia after the end of the application round within a calendar year according to the delivery time of the e-books.

The following is taken into account when assessing applications:

  • the corresponding of the project to the aims of the application round;
  • the national cultural importance of the project and impact on the field;
  • the professionalism, previous experience, administrative capacity, existence of cooperation partners and contribution on implementing the project of those carrying out the project;
  • the sustainability, innovation and timeliness of the project;
  • impact on shaping the reading habits of children and young people;
  • thoroughness of the programme of writers’ performances and literary festivals and events, level of performers involved, number of those benefitting from the project and regional coverage;
  • in case of literary festivals and events in addition the international reach, level of performers invited from abroad and integration into international literary life;
  • how realistic the budget is, how justified the items of expenditure are and the amount of co-financing and own share of the entire budget

Opportunity of a three-year grant contract

The committee may make a proposal to the Minister of Culture to conclude a grant contract with the recipient of the grant of up to three years on the following terms and conditions:

  • the activity presented in the application has a great influence on the field, the activity has an important part in developing the field of literature, developing children’s reading habits as well as diversifying the cultural landscape;
  • the calendar year’s budget of the activities presented in the application exceeds 50 000 euros;
  • the applicant presents a three-year activity plan and vision to the committee, which in addition to the detailed plan and budget of the year applied for contains development directions, raising of topics, planned activities and programme renewals of three years together with the budget by a period of three years;
  • on concluding a three-year contract the size of the grant of the specific year is confirmed with an annex to the contract concluded at the beginning of each year. The contract also prescribes terms for the early termination of the contract, including if budget funds are not allocated or are allocated in a smaller amount than planned;
  • each year the recipient of the grant must additionally present to the Ministry of Culture a detailed activity plan and budget of the respective year and a report in the appropriate form. On the end of the three-year period in addition to the report of the specific year a substantive summary for the entire period must also be submitted.


Costs eligible and not eligible for aid

The aid eligibility period of the grant is 01.01-31.12.2016. 

The following are deemed costs eligible for aid:

Honorariums, stipends, salary and paying social tax, income tax, unemployment insurance payments and pension insurance payments related to them;
costs, which are necessary directly for implementing the project and which have not bee compensated from funds allocated by the Estonian state or other co-financer before;
accrual-based costs, which are made in the period of using the grant confirmed in the project application, cash-based expenses must be made by the deadline for submitting the report.

The following costs are not deemed eligible for aid

Membership fees of organisations;
purchasing equipment, computers etc.;
VAT expense, if the applicant for the grant is a VAT payer, in case of calculating proportional VAT, VAT is eligible for aid in the part, in
respect of which the recipient of the grant has not reclaimed input VAT;
other expenses, which are unjustified and unimportant from the position of implementing the activity.



    Asta Trummel
    Adviser (Literature)

    Phone +372 628 2223


    Last updated: 18 November 2016