ERC Guiding principles of ERC schemes * Scientific excellence is the sole selection criterion * All fields of research are eligible * Individual teams led by independent PI are supported *Significant funding is provided to attract the best researchers
ERC Starting Grants last up to five years and provide €100,000 to €400,000 of funding per year, amounting to a total of €0.5 to 2.0 million Euro per grant.
Some examples of successful topics In vivo imaging of functional plasticity in the mammalian brain Protein-activating shiftides: anti- cancer lead compounds A combined experimental and computational approach for quantitative and mechanistic understanding of transcriptional regulation
Deciphering the wiring structure of the regulatory networks that control mRNA decay and translation
Planets - The Solar System and Beyond Multi-photon Quantum Optics Notes and suggestions on Novel methods in Condensed Matter Physics
The Promise and Limits of International Courts and Tribunals – Exploring the Conditions for Effective International Adjudication The Promise and Limits of International Courts and Tribunals – Exploring the Conditions for Effective International Adjudication The Design of International Institutions: Legitimacy, Effectiveness, and Distribution in Global Governance Damaged people- the psychological impacts of abuse
The application structure a) The Principal Investigator (PI) (Max. 4 pages) i. CV ii. Self Evaluation iii. Funding ID
b) The Research Project (Max. 10 pages) i. State-of-the-art and objectives ii. Methodology
The proposal structure iii. Resources and Budget c) Research Environment (Max 2 pages) i. Transition to independence ii. Host institution iii. Additional participants + Host institution support letter
STARTING GRANTS Independence implies that the PI has the authority to:- ○ Apply for funding independently of senior colleagues; ○ Direct the project, manage the research funding and make appropriate resource allocation decisions;
ERC Criteria ○ Publishing record as senior author and invite as co-author - only those who have contributed substantially to the reported work; ○ Supervise team members, including research students or others; ○ Have access to reasonable space and facilities for conducting the research.
ERC The Principal Investigator does not necessarily need to be employed by the hosting institution at the time when the proposal is submitted. Can be of any nationality.
ERC Starting Grant PI must have his/her first PhD (or equivalent doctoral degree) more than 3 and less than 8 years prior to the deadline. The PI must be supported by a legally established hosting institution, which is entitled to receive funds and is the applicant legal entity for the ERC grant.
Research teams may also involve team members from other research organisations situated in the same or a different country. Research teams can be of national or trans- national character.* * Traditional approach of EU consortia proposals is excluded AND VERY FEW AWARDS WERE MADE TO GROUPINGS
Average grant requested ~ €1 Million Majority (85%) of PIs were EU nationals Only 4% were currently based outside the EU – and most of these are European seeking to return Majority applicants(87%) had 4-9 years post-PhD experience
24% female; 76% male – but varies across disciplines 89% of host institutions are in the EU (11% in Associated Countries) Majority of proposals (89%) involved a single institution Only 4% of applications had more than 3 institutions involved High demand on EPSS Around 350 proposals ineligible; over 250 due to missing or invalid statement of support
AVERAGE AGE OF SUCCESSFUL CANDIDATES 35 TYPICAL AWARDS 1.7MEuro
LESSONS FROM ERC SO FAR VERY HEAVY EMPHASIS ON STRENGTH OF THE PUBLICATION RECORD FOCUS ON BUILDING THE CORE GROUP NOT JUST ANOTHER PROJECT BLAST OFF/LAUNCH PAD
LESSONS FROM ERC SO FAR THE EVALUATORS TENDED NOT TO LIKE :-  RESEARCH GROUPS THAT WERE BECOMING TOO BIG  WHERE A HIGH PROPORTION OF THE PI’S OWN SALARY WAS INCLUDED
BEFORE YOU START THINK ABOUT WHO YOU ARE WRITING FOR. THINK ABOUT THE PANEL COMPOSITION
PE5 Materials and Synthesis: materials synthesis, structure-properties relations, functional and advanced materials, molecular architecture, organic chemistry PE5_1 Structural properties of materials PE5_2 Solid state materials PE5_3 Surface modification PE5_4 Thin films PE5_5 Corrosion PE5_6 Porous materials PE5_7 Ionic liquids
LS3 Cellular and Developmental Biology: cell biology, cell physiology, signaltransduction, organogenesis, developmental genetics, pattern formation in plants and animals
LS3_1 Morphology and functional imaging of cells LS3_2 Cell biology and molecular transport mechanisms LS3_3 Cell cycle and division LS3_4 Apoptosis LS3_5 Cell differentiation, physiology and dynamics LS3_6 Organelle biology LS3_7 Cell signalling and cellular interactions LS3_8 Signal transduction LS3_9 Development, developmental genetics, pattern formation and embryology in animals LS3_10 Development, developmental genetics, pattern formation and embryology in plants LS3_11 Cell genetics LS3_12 Stem cell biology
Participation of other legal entities If it is proposed that other legal entities participate in the project, in addition to the applicant legal entity, is their participation fully justified by the scientific added value they bring to the project? Very few successful proposals involved more than one institution
KEY POINTS NOT JUST ANOTHER PROJECT VISION IN THE RESEARCH
ADVANCED INVESTIGATOR SCHEME CANDIDATES AT ANY CAREER STAGE FULLY INDEPENDENT ANY NATIONALITY MUST BE SPONSORED
ERC Advanced Grants last up to five years and provide €100,000 to €500,000 of funding per year, amounting to a total of €0.5 to 2.5 million Euro per grant*. *Exceptionally up to 3.5 MEuro