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Q: Should a Synergy proposal for the ERC funding (ERC-2019-SyG) be only a successful collaboration?
A:

Not only. The ultimate goal of the ERC Synergy (SyG) scheme is to allow for a close and genuine collaborative interaction that will enable transformative research at the forefront of science, capable of yielding unpredictable and ground-breaking scientific results and/or cross-fertilizing disciplines, leading to a result that is more than just the sum of Principal Investigators (PIs)' individual contributions.

More information about the ERC-2019-SYG Grant Call is available in the ERC Work Programme 2019 and the Information for Applicants to the Synergy Grant 2019 Call.

Q: How is synergy defined in an ERC Synergy grant (ERC-SyG-2019)?
A:

The term 'Synergy' cannot be defined in one single way. Synergy projects should generally involve composite teams that are capable of tackling bold new research themes that require novel approaches and unique fusions of researchers. Such teams are typically characterised by exceptional combinations of knowledge and skills, in which the 2,3 or 4 Principal Investigators hold a central role. Synergy projects require continuous interlinking, feedbacks and integration amongst the different research teams. A Synergy project could incorporate novel multi- or trans-disciplinary approaches or innovative combinations of knowledge and skills in a single discipline or research field. Each Synergy proposal must demonstrate that its objectives can only be achieved through the specific combination of knowledge and skills brought together by the participating PIs. In other words, a major scientific question of pressing significance, an integrated team and the transformative scientific potential are crucial elements in conceiving a Synergy proposal.

More information about the ERC-2019-SYG Grant Call is available in the Information for Applicants to the Synergy Grant 2019 Call.

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 call, how does the ERC treat the request to extend the eligibility time-window in the case of clinical training?
A:

For clinical training, the effective elapsed time since the award of the first PhD [for applicants whose first eligible degree is their MD such incidents can be considered from the date of the completion of their MD degree] will be considered reduced by the documented amount of clinical training actually received by the Principal Investigator after the award of the first eligible degree, and by up to 4 years maximum.

In case of part-time clinical training, the exact total training time will be calculated pro-rata to extend the eligibility window. Documented clinical training that has taken place between the award of the first eligible degree and the call deadline can be used to extend the eligibility window up to 4 years maximum.

Clinical training should be documented by an official signed testimonial from the employer indicating the start and end date of the training and preferably also the work pattern (full-time or part-time training).

Q: What type of feedback will I be receiving during and after the evaluation of my proposal submitted to the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 (ERC-2018-CoG) call?
A:

During each step of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 evaluation, the two main elements of the proposal (Principal Investigator and research project) will be evaluated and rated. At the end of each evaluation step the proposals will be ranked by the panels on the basis of the marks they have received and on the panels' overall appreciation of each proposal's strengths and weaknesses.

At the end of Step 1 of the evaluation, on the basis of the assessment of Part B1 of the proposal, applicants will be informed that their proposal:

A. is of sufficient quality to pass to Step 2 of the evaluation;

B. is of high quality but not sufficient to pass to Step 2 of the evaluation; or

C. is not of sufficient quality to pass to Step 2 of the evaluation.

 

At the end of Step 2 of the evaluation, on the basis of the assessment of the full proposal, applicants will be informed that their proposal either:

A. fully meets the ERC's excellence criterion and is recommended for funding if sufficient funds are available; or

B. meets some but not all elements of the ERC's excellence criterion and will not be funded.

 

More information on the results of the peer review evaluation can be found at section 3.7 of the ERC Rules for Submission and Evaluation.

Applicants may also be subject to restrictions on submitting proposals to future ERC calls based on the outcome of the evaluation. Applicants will need to check the restrictions in place for each call (see restrictions on submission of proposals under 'Eligibility criteria'of the ERC Work Programme 2018).

In addition, once the evaluation of their proposal has been completed, applicants will receive an evaluation report which will include the ranking range of their proposal out of the proposals evaluated by the panel (for more details, see Information for applicants to the Starting and Consolidator Grant 2018 Calls).

More information on the evaluation procedure can also be found in the ERC Work Programme 2018 section relevant to the call.

Q: Should the applicant provide the names and the Curriculum Vitae (CV) of the team members in the proposal for the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 (ERC-2018-CoG) call?
A:

The CVs of individual team members should not be included. Although, it is not mandatory to provide the names of individual team members, the proposal should describe the composition of the team that will carry out the proposed activities.

Further explanations can be found in the Information for the applicants of the Starting and Consolidator 2018 Grants.

 

Q: Must the Principal Investigator applying for an ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 (ERC-2018-CoG) choose the appropriate ERC peer review evaluation panel for his/her proposal?
A:

According to the conditions of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 call, the applicant must choose a primary evaluation panel and may also indicate a secondary evaluation panel. They should indicate when they believe that their proposal is of a cross-panel or cross-domain nature. In most cases the proposal will be evaluated by the primary panel indicated by the applicant. However, if the scope of a proposal does not correspond to the expertise of the primary panel, the proposal can be reallocated to another panel, if the panel chairs of the original and the new panel unanimously agree to do so.

Further explanations can be found in the Information for the applicants of the Starting and Consolidator 2018 Grants. The primary panel structure and description is also described in Annex 1 of the ERC Work Programme 2018.

 

Q: Do peer reviewers receive all parts of a proposal in the case of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 (ERC-2018-CoG) call?
A:

For the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018, Step 1 of the peer review evaluation process is based only on the extended synopsis, the Principal Investigator's CV and the track record (Part B1 only), and peer reviewers do not have access to the full scientific proposal. At Step 2, the peer reviewers base their assessment on the complete version of the retained proposals, including the full scientific proposal (Part B2).

For more information on the evaluation process, please refer to the ERC Work Programme 2018 (section 'Evaluation procedure and criteria').

 

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 (ERC-2018-CoG) call, is a Principal Investigator holding a Master Degree and no PhD entitled to apply to this call?
A:

No, according to the conditions of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 call, the Principal Investigator must have been awarded a PhD or equivalent doctoral degree to be eligible. First-professional degrees will not be considered in themselves as PhD-equivalent, even if recipients carry the title "Doctor".

For more information, please, consult the ERC policy on PhD and equivalent doctoral degrees in the ERC Work Programme 2018, Annex 2.

 

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 (ERC-2018-CoG) call, for medical doctors who hold both a medical doctor degree and a PhD, which degree will be taken into consideration for the calculation of the eligibility window?
A:

According to the conditions of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 call, for medical doctors who have been awarded both a medical doctor degree and a PhD, the date of the earliest degree that makes the applicant eligible takes precedence in the calculation of the eligibility time-window (7-12 years after the date of award of the PhD or 9-14 years past the medical doctor degree completion for Consolidators).

For more information, please, consult the ERC policy on PhD and equivalent doctoral degrees in the ERC Work Programme 2018 – Annex 2.

 

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 (ERC-2018-CoG) call, what degrees are considered equivalent to a PhD?
A:

According to the conditions of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2018 call, in order to be eligible to apply a Principal Investigator must have been awarded a PhD or equivalent doctoral degree. It is recognised that in certain fields some other doctoral titles have the same status and represent variants of the PhD. All of them have similar content requirements. These cases will be examined individually, as part of the ERCEA's decision on eligibility. First professional degrees will not be considered in themselves as PhD-equivalent, even if mentioning the title "Doctor".

For more information, please, consult the ERC policy on PhD and equivalent doctoral degrees in the ERC Work Programme 2018 - Annex 2.