Tagged / European Research Council

ERC Consolidator Grant 2019 call published

The European Research Council (ERC) has published its 2019 Consolidator Grant call; applicants have to submit their proposals before 4 PM (UK time) 7 February 2019 (104 days left until closure from now).

The fundamental activity of the ERC is to provide attractive, long-term funding to support excellent investigators and their research teams to pursue ground-breaking, high-gain/high-risk research.

ERC Consolidator Grants are designed to support excellent Principal Investigators at the career stage at which they may still be consolidating their own independent research team or programme. Applicant Principal Investigators must demonstrate the ground-breaking nature, ambition and feasibility of their scientific proposal.

Consolidator Grants may be awarded up to a maximum of EUR 2 000 000 for a period of 5 years. The Principal Investigator shall have been awarded their first PhD over 7 and up to 12 years prior to 1 January 2019. The effective elapsed time since the award of the first PhD can be reduced in certain properly documented circumstances.

A competitive Consolidator Grant Principal Investigator must have already shown research independence and evidence of maturity, for example by having produced several important publications as main author or without the participation of their PhD supervisor.

For more information please refer to Guide for Applicants. There also are great support opportunities available at BU for academics planning to apply for EU and International funding. If you are considering applying for international funding, contact international research facilitator or any member of RKEO Funding Development Team at your faculty to individually discuss your ideas and the ways we could support you.

ERC Work Programme 2019 published

With a slight delay, the European Research Council (ERC) has published the Work Programme for 2019. While the Starting Grant 2019 call is open and preparation of proposals may already be at their final stage, academics may refer to ERC Work Programme 2019 for further information on ERC Consolidator Grant(submission deadline 07/02/2019), Advanced Grant (29/08/2019), Synergy grant (08/11/2018) and Proof of Concept Grant (cut-off dates 22/01/2019, 25/04/2019 and 19/09/2019).

In the meantime, ERC has published an article “Applying for ERC funding – myths vs reality”. Academics might be interested to find out more about ERC grant application process from the point of view of a person who has experience from both sides of the fence; Professor Superti-Furga, a molecular and systems biologist, has won several ERC grants from 2009 to 2015 and became a member of the ERC’s Scientific Council in 2017.

The fundamental activity of the ERC is to provide attractive, long-term funding to support excellent investigators and their research teams to pursue ground-breaking, high-gain/high-risk research.

There are great support opportunities available at BU for academics planning to apply for EU and International funding. If you are considering applying for international funding, contact international research facilitator or any member of RKEO Funding Development Team at your faculty to individually discuss your ideas and the ways we could support you.

ERC News

We have received an update from the European Research Council, which highlights….

  • The current ERC Starting Grants call has now closed with results due in the summer of 2018.  The ERC Work Programme has earmarked €581 million for an estimated 391 Starting Grants in 2018.
  • Ideas, the ERC newsletter, autumn issue is now available, with a focus on serendipity in research.
  • An agreement has been concluded between the EU and India to encourage research visits of Indian top researchers in teams funded by the European Research Council (ERC) in Europe. In line with the ERC global approach, this is the tenth international initiative of this kind, which comes at a time when the ERC also marks its tenth anniversary.  The first initiative of this kind was signed in 2012 with the USA (National Science Foundation, NSF) and agreements then followed with prestigious funding bodies in South Korea, Argentina, Japan, China, South Africa, Mexico, Brazil and Canada.

Open Calls

BU staff considering applying for any of these calls and other international funding, should contact Emily Cieciura, RKEO’s Research Facilitator: International Funding, for further information and support.

Will you be applying to the ERC in 2017?

ercAre you at the right stage in your career to apply for a European Research Council Grant?

The indicative deadline dates for 2017 are:

Consolidator Grant – 9th February 2017 (see recent press release for the results of the last round)

Advanced Grant –  31st August 2017 (call expected to open on 16th May 2017)

Proof of Concept Grant – 19th January 2017, 25th April 2017 and 5th September 2017

To find out more about these opportunties, which fund the best of the best researchers in Europe, please take a look at the ERC website and the  2017 ERC Work Programme.

The ERC is celebrating 10 years in 2017 – it has funded almost 7,000 researchers and thereby has supported more than 40,000 team members.

If you are considering applying, please contact Emily Cieciura, RKEO’s Research Facilitator; EU & International, to discuss your plans and arrange support.

European Research Council – Consolidator Grants

ercWhat are ERC Grants?

The ERC Work Programme 2017 sets out the objectives and principles of ERC funding. ERC Starting and Consolidator Principal Investigators must demonstrate the ground-breaking nature, ambition and feasibility of their scientific proposal. ERC grants are open to researchers of any nationality, who intend to conduct their research activity in any EU Member State or Associated Country .

The ERC’s frontier research grants operate on a ‘bottom-up’ basis without predetermined priorities. Applications can be made in any field of research with particular emphasis on the frontiers of science, scholarship and engineering6 . In particular, proposals of an interdisciplinary nature, which cross the boundaries between different fields of research, pioneering proposals addressing new and emerging fields of research or proposals introducing unconventional, innovative approaches and scientific inventions are encouraged.

The next call for the Consolidator Grant closes on 9th February 2017. Consolidator Grants can be up to a maximum of EUR 2,000,000 for a period of 5 years (pro rata for projects of shorter duration).

Are you at this stage?

  • Have you been awarded your first PhD > 7 and ≤ 12 years prior to 1 January 2017 – cut-off dates: PhD awarded from 1 January 2005 to 31 December 2009 (inclusive)?
  • Can you demonstrate research excellence?
  • Are you starting or consolidating your own independent research team or programme?
  • Do you have several important publications as main author or without the participation of your PhD supervisor?

The ERC guidance for Starting and Consolidator grants guidance has recently been updated.

What next?

If you are considering applying to this scheme, please contact Emily Cieciura, RKEO’s Research Facilitator: EU & International, as soon as possible.

 

UK Research Office training opportunties

UKRO logoUKRO hold provides regular training events in their capacity as the UK National Contact Point for the European Research Council (ERC) and the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions​ (MSCA).

Forthcoming events:

26th October 2016: ERC Consolidator Grants Information and Proposal Writing Event to be held at the University of Glasgow

Are you a researcher interested in applying for the 2017 ERC Consolidator Grants call?

The session is aimed at researchers based in, or moving to, the UK who are planning to submit a proposal to the ERC Consolidator Grants call. The 2017 Consolidator Grants call is expected to open on 20 October 2016 and close on 9 February 2017. Applicants are expected to be active researchers and to have a track record of excellent research. The scheme is designed to support Principal Investigators (PIs) at the stage at which they may still be consolidating their own independent research team or programme. To be eligible for the 2017 call, the PI must be 7-12 years from the date of award of their PhD on 1 January 2017, which is extendable in certain strict cases.

Another repeating event is being planned for a London location in November 2016.

 

12th October 2016: MSCA Innovative Training Networks (ITN) to be held at the University of West London

The ITN scheme supports joint research training and/or doctoral programmes, implemented by European partnerships of universities, research institutions, industry (incl. SMEs) and other non-academic organisations. The research training programmes are intended to provide doctoral students with excellent research skills, coupled with experience outside academia, hence developing their innovation capacities and employability prospects. The event aim to provide participants with an in-depth overview of the ITN scheme. Participants should gain a clear understanding of the proposal format for each scheme and the key issues relating to planning, writing and submitting proposals. There will also be ample opportunity to ask questions. Attendance will be free of charge, thanks to the support from the University of West London.

To attend staff should register, via BU’s subscription, on the UKRO website. Please ensure that you have approval within your Faculty to attend. You should also register with UKRO so that you receive announcements concerning EU funding direct to your own inbox – make sure that you hear first!

If you are considering applying, please contact Emily Cieciura, REKO’s Research Facilitator: EU & International, in the first instance.

UKRO – ERC Starting Grant Information and Proposal Writing Events

UKRO logo​​​In its capacity as UK National Contact Point for the European Research Council (ERC), the UK Research Office, in partnership with the hosting institutions, is holding two events for researchers who are interested in applying for the next ERC Starting Grants call. The events are scheduled as follows:

University of York, Monday 5 September 2016, 13:30 – 17:00

King’s College London​, Tuesday 6 September 2016, 10:00 – 13:00

​​The scheme is designed to support Principal Investigators (PIs) at the stage at which they are starting their own independent research team or programme. To be eligible for the 2017 call, the PI must have been awarded their PhD between two and seven years prior to 1 January 2017 (extendable in certain strict cases).

The next ERC Starting Grant call is not yet available on the Participant Portal but please refer to the ERC website for all information about this and other ERC calls.

BU staff can also register, via BU subscription, on the UKRO website to receive announcements concerning EU funding direct to your own inbox – make sure that you hear first!

If you are considering applying, please contact Emily Cieciura, REKO’s Research Facilitator: EU & International, in the first instance.

UKRO Conference Report – important EU funding updates

UKRO logoThe UK Research Office (UKRO) is the European office of the UK Research Councils. It delivers a subscription-based advisory service for research organisations (in the main UK HEIs) and provides National Contact Point services on behalf of the UK Government. UKRO’s mission is to maximise UK engagement in EU-funded research, innovation and higher education activities. One way UKRO supports this mission is through the annual conference.

The slides are publicly available via the UKRO website. To access further subscriber-only information, including events notifications and news, BU staff members can register today!

The 2016  UKRO Annual Conference took place at Glasgow ​Caledonian University in Glasgow on Thursday 30th June and Friday 1st July 2016.​​ Please follow the links below to access slides and other information from the event:

Conference Programme​​

Biographies of Speakers

Presentations:

Thursday 30 June 2016

Opening plenary session

Horizon 2020: Are We On the Path to Success?
Mr Wolfgang Burtscher (DG RTD, Deputy Director General)

European Research Council: An Update and Future Directions
Mr Theodore Papazoglou (ERCEA, Head of Unit, Support to the ERC Scientific Council)

Parallel sessions 1

A) Horizon 2020 Health Challenge: Zika, Ebola & Antimicrobial Resistance
Ms Line Matthiessen (DG RTD, Head of Unit, Fighting Infectious Diseases and Advancing Public Health)

B) Being Ethics Ready and Compliant
Ms Maria Filipa Ferraz De Oliveira (ERCEA, Head of Ethics Sector)

C) Horizon 2020 Funding for Research into Migration and Mobility
Ms Elisabeth Lipiatou (DG RTD, Head of Unit, Open and Inclusive Societies)

Parallel sessions 2

A) Marie Skl​odowska-Curie Actions Reporting: IT’s That Time of the Year Again…
Ms Cathy Souto Enriques (REA, MSCA Project Advisor)

B) Funding Research for a Secure Society
​Mr Graham Willmott (DG HOME, Head of Unit, Innovation and Industry Security)​

Friday 1 July 2016

Open Innovation: The Future of EU Innovation Funding? Ideas for Creating a European Innovation Council
Ms Sophie Laurie (NERC, Associate Director of Innovation and Translation)
Mr Matthew King (DG RTD, Head of Unit Open Innovation)​​

Parallel sessions 3

A) Open to the World: Co-Funded Calls and How it Works in Practice
Mr Diego Sammaritano (DG RTD, Policy Officer, R&I Cooperation with China)

B) Open Science: Opening Up Scientific Information in Horizon 2020
Ms Joy Davidson (Collaborative Research & Services Provision Manager, University of Glasgow)

Parallel sessions 4

ELO Profiles for the Future of EU Funding
Ms Angela Noble (University of Edinburgh, Manager – Europe)
Ms Philippa Shelton (University of the West of England, Bristol, Senior Research Business Development Manager)
Ms Kimberly Cornfield (UCL, Head of EU Proposal Management)

Managing Intellectual Property in Horizon 2020
Mr Jakub Ramocki (EU IPR Helpdesk, Intellectual Property Advisor)

If you would like to discuss potential EU funding activity, please contact Emily Cieciura, RKEO’s Research Facilitator: EU & International. To see related articles, just search for ‘UKRO’ on the BU Research blog.

 

ERC Deadlines

ercThe deadlines for the European Research Council calls are quickly approaching.

Please contact Emily Cieciura, RKEO’s Research Facilitator: EU and International if you intent to apply for:

Why not sign up for ERC email alerts so that you keep up to date with ERC news and events?

 

EU Radar – Excellent Science

The following calls have been announced on the Participant Portal, within the Excellent Science pillar of Horizon 2020:

ERC Advanced Grant – this call is open and closes on 2/6/15 at 17:00 (Brussels local time)

Advanced Grants are designed to support excellent Principal Investigators at the career stage at which they are already established research leaders with a recognised track record of research achievements. Applicant Principal Investigators must demonstrate the ground-breaking nature, ambition and feasibility of their scientific proposal.

MSCA Individual Fellowship – this call is open with a deadline of 10/9/15 at 17:00 (Brussels local time)

The goal of Individual Fellowships is to enhance the creative and innovative potential of experienced researchers. Please see information about BU’s workshop and external training provided by UKRO

Future and Emerging Technologies (FET)

FET-Open – novel ideas for radically new technologies (Research & Innovation Action)  – this call is open with a closing date of 29/9/15 at 17:00 (Brussels local time)

Supporting a large set of early stage, high risk visionary science and technology collaborative research projects is necessary for the successful exploration of new foundations for radically new future technologies. Nurturing fragile ideas requires an agile, risk-friendly and highly interdisciplinary research approach, expanding well beyond the strictly technological disciplines. Recognising and stimulating the driving role of new high-potential actors in research and innovation, such as women, young researchers and high-tech SMEs, is also important for nurturing the scientific and industrial leaders of the future.

FET-Open – novel ideas for radically new technologies (FET Take-Up Coordination and Support Activities) – this call is open with a closing date of 29/9/15 at 17:00 (Brussels local time)

The challenge is to make Europe the best place in the world for collaborative research on future and emerging technologies that will renew the basis for future European competitiveness and growth, and that will make a difference for society in the decades to come, by actions for stimulating take-up of FET research results towards impact and innovation, in ways that are complementary to and beyond the capacity of single research projects. Examples include outreach to investors and entrepreneurs, use of unconventional channels (like NGOs or artists), or targeting of new audiences and purposes (e.g. for social innovation, global development or peace).

FET-Open – novel ideas for radically new technologies (FET Exchange Coordination and Support Activities)

The challenge is to make Europe the best place in the world for collaborative research on future and emerging technologies that will renew the basis for future European competitiveness and growth, and that will make a difference for society in the decades to come. Applicants should address structuring an emerging FET-relevant topic and the interdisciplinary communities around it. This shall include research roadmapping, stimulating learning and exchange (possibly with related initiatives worldwide) involving the appropriate range of disciplines and actors such as young researchers and high-tech SMEs, and broader stakeholder engagement.

ERC Proof of Concept – this call is open with two forthcoming deadlines – Intermediate deadline: 28/5/15 and Final deadline: 1/10/15, both due at at 17:00 (Brussels local time)

Frontier research often generates unexpected or new opportunities for commercial or societal application. The ERC Proof of Concept Grants aim to maximise the value of the excellent research that the ERC funds, by funding further work (i.e. activities which were not scheduled to be funded by the original ERC frontier research grant) to verify the innovation potential of ideas arising from ERC funded projects. Proof of Concept Grants are therefore on offer only to Principal Investigators whose proposals draw substantially on their ERC funded research.

COFUND Doctoral Programme – the call will open on 14/4/15 and has a deadline of 01/10/ 2015 at 17:00 (Brussels local time)

Doctoral programmes address the development and broadening of the research competencies of early-stage researchers. The training follows the EU Principles on Innovative Doctoral Training (http://ec.europa.eu/euraxess/pdf/research_policies/Principles_for_Innovative_Doctoral_Training.pdf). Collaboration with a wider set of partners, including from the non-academic sector, which may provide hosting or secondment opportunities or training in research or transferable skills, as well as innovative elements of the proposed programme, will be positively taken into account during the evaluations. Each researcher must be enrolled in a doctoral programme. Attention is paid to the quality of supervision and mentoring arrangements as well as career guidance.

COFUND Fellowship Programme – the call will open on 14/4/15 and has a deadline of 01/10/ 2015 at 17:00 (Brussels local time)

Proposed fellowship programmes are encouraged to cover all research disciplines (“bottom-up”), but can also focus on specific disciplines. In this case the range of covered disciplines should allow reasonable flexibility for the researchers. Programmes that prioritise specific research disciplines based on national or regional Research and Innovation Strategies for Smart Specialisation (RIS3 strategies) will also be supported.

For further information on EU and International funding calls, please contact Paul Lynch or Emily Cieciura in the RKEO Funding Development Team

UKRO Annual Conference 2014 – a newcomer’s view

UK Research OfficeAs my new role within RKEO will concentrate on supporting academics with EU and international applications, I was very pleased to attend the recent UKRO Annual Conference.

Having provided dedicated support to Knowledge Transfer Partnerships for nearly three years, I have grown used to the friendliness and knowledge of my professional colleagues in the UK KTP world. I need not have worried as I found the EU funding community just as welcoming and knowledgeable. With Horizon 2020 ahead, most of the conference focused on initial findings, preparing for future bids and highlighting updated practice and opportunities since FP7.

 Christina Miller (Director, UKRO) opened the conference then Tim Willis (Head, International Relations, BBSRC) led a session reviewing the start of H2020 and where the UK should be going.

David Wilson (BIS), outlined the role of the Technology Strategy Board and how H2020 links to the UK’s agenda for growth and innovation. Within H2020, innovation is ‘mainstreamed’ as are the social sciences and humanities. The difficulty SMEs have in engaging with EU funds was acknowledged but it was stressed that H2020 provides the framework for trust and tools to manage IP etc. We were left with a call to arms to help SMEs navigate this complex funding stream and to actively encourage such collaboration, with government support. Keith Sequeira (Member of Cabinet – Commissioner Geoghegan-Quinn) focused on how H2020 is integrated, simplified and challenge based, with the removal of disciplinary boundaries. The scheme also provides a stronger mechanism to ensure outcomes showing impact. Shearer West (Head of Humanities Division, University of Oxford) considered the implications of the mainstreaming of arts and humanities. Their role in supporting global challenges by providing context and perspective was shown as vital to the process of embedding innovation within policy development, ethics and economic growth. The example of the humanities in the H2020 Climate action Advisory Group, one of many EU expert groups, was explored.

Following this session there followed a lively debate from the floor, where the importance of EU funding to the UK and the engagement by UK HEIs were both evident.

The next session, presented by Dirk Beernaert (Adviser to the DG Connect), considered the routes available via H2020, in preparation for the digital revolution. Dirk gave an excellent overview of the funding topology and key themes – smart objects / platforms, human-centric and cyber security. The session ended with a question – will HEIs define or just participate? We were encouraged to be pro-active in influencing the funding roadmap.

I then attended a useful breakout session on IPR given by Lea Montesse of the European IPR Help desk. This outlined the processes to be undertaken in managing IP within the life of an EU project, from inception through to eventual exploitation.  The key message here was to make more use of this service. My second breakout session was presented by Mathias Reddmann (Policy and Project Officer DG Connect) considered the focus area of Smart Cities and Communities. Unlike many other streams, the UK is not in the top three funding recipients here. The session outlined the European Innovation Partnership, which is not a funding instrument but a mechanism for collaboration. The application is a ‘light touch’ Invitation to Commitment for HEIs and SMEs.

The first day ended with a celebratory meal as this conference coincided with 30 years of UKRO. This was preceded by a reception hosted by the University of Bristol.

The second day dawned with a consideration of the annotated Model Grant Agreement, which included detailed discussion of costing, budgets, third parties vs. subcontractors, staff costs, payments, reporting and audits. Given some detailed questioning by some HEIs, David Mejuto Gayoso (Legal Officer, DG RTD), made a strong defence regarding some controversial issues in the changes from FP7 to H2020.

Alejandro Martin-Hobdey (Head of Unit, ERC) gave a fascinating and statistically-rich presentation of how the EU countries are responding to EU funding and the challenges and opportunities that this presents to the European Research Council. For BU, the Standard Grant appeared an attractive route into this funding. In terms of priories for ERA, these are gender, wider EU participation, international participation (with S. Korea and NSF mentioned), interdisciplinary proposals and clear impact evaluation. In questioning, Alejandro reported that 50% of grants are made to c. 50 institutions s with the UK dominated by the Russell Group members. During the Q and A, the potential of using companies and leverage and embedding the scheme within PDP for academics was aired.

Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions, in terms of building successful partnerships with the non-academic sector, was explored by Kamila Partyka (Policy Officer, DG EAC). A key message from this session was that, in the EU, 45% of Post-Doc researchers work in the private sector, so EU funding needs to be used to prepare the best candidates to work in industry, not just in academia. The structure of these actions within H2020 was described, with particular reference to Innovative Training Networks (ITN). I noted that on the slide giving the top 20 participating HEIs in the UK that no post ’92 HEIs were listed… 

Alan Cross (Head of Unit, DG RTD) then gave a revelatory review of the H2020 evaluation processes. This including scoring, key points for assessment (challenge based, impact, close to market and cross disciplinary), the role of the assessors who use the principles of independence, impartiality, objectivity, accuracy and consistency, eligibility, operational capacity, panel review processes and ensuring quality in terms of the panel.

The conference ended with Professor Jackie Hunt CBE (BBSRC) and David Golding (Head of EU and International Strategy, TSB) inspiring us all to go back and make better use of IP to promote business and academic research within innovation partnerships. The Innovative Medicines Initiative was used as a key example, along with BBSRC Research Industry Clubs, ELIXIR, ERA-NETS, EPI and KIC. The value of the TSB in supporting innovation was enthusiastically presented with the Enterprise Europe Network noted. Using other agencies, such as LEPs, trade associations and professional bodies was encouraged, as was the TSB’s desire to build real relationships, not just being a funder for x months.

 By the end of the very full two days, my head was buzzing with potential opportunities for BU. Over the coming months, as Paul Lynch and I move to our new role in facilitating EU and International bidding at BU, we hope to inspire you with our enthusiasm for the over 400 schemes within the EU funding arena.