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Q: Should the applicant provide the names and the Curriculum Vitae of the team members in the proposal for the ERC Starting Grant 2019 (ERC-2019-STG) 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 2019 Grants.

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 (ERC-2019-STG) call, is it possible to choose ERC panels from different domains?
A:

For the ERC Starting Grant 2019, the applicant must choose a primary evaluation panel and may also indicate a secondary evaluation panel. He/she should indicate when he/she believes that his/her proposal is of a cross-panel or cross-domain nature. Further explanations can be found in the Information for the Applicants to the Starting and Consolidator Grant 2019 Calls. The primary panel structure and description is also described in Annex 1 to the ERC Work Programme 2019.

Q: Do peer reviewers receive all parts of a proposal in the case of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 call (ERC-2019-STG)?
A:

For the ERC Starting Grant 2019, Step 1 of the peer review evaluation process is based only on Part B1 only (the extended synopsis, the Principal Investigator's CV and the track record) and peer reviewers do not have access to the full research proposal. At Step 2, the peer reviewers base their assessment on the complete versions of the retained proposals – Part B1 and Part B2 (the scientific proposal). Please note that experts do not have access to any supporting documentation during the evaluation.

For more information on the evaluation process, please refer to the ERC Work Programme 2019 (section 'Evaluation procedure and criteria').

Q: Must the Principal Investigator applying for an ERC Starting Grant 2019 (ERC-2019-STG) choose the appropriate ERC peer review evaluation panel for their proposal?
A:

According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 call, the applicant must choose a primary evaluation panel and may also indicate a secondary evaluation panel. He/she should indicate when he/she believes that her/his 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 agree to do so.

Q: According to the conditions applied to the ERC frontier research Grants 2019, can a researcher participate as PI in more than 1 ERC frontier research proposal at the same time? Is it possible to receive funding for more than 1 participation in such case?
A:

According to the conditions applied to the ERC frontier research Grants 2019, there are three main restrictions to be considered for Principal Investigators in this regard:

  • A researcher may participate as Principal Investigator [Including all Principal Investigators supported under the Synergy Grant] in only one ERC frontier research project at any one time [NB A new frontier research project can only start after the duration of the project fixed in a previous frontier research grant agreement has ended.]
  • A researcher participating as Principal Investigator in an ERC frontier research project may not submit a proposal for another ERC frontier research grant, unless the existing project ends no more than two years after the call deadline
  • A Principal Investigator may submit proposals to different ERC frontier research grant calls published under the same Work Programme, but only the first eligible proposal will be evaluated.

These restrictions are specified in the ERC Work Programme 2019 and may be modified in future work programmes by the ERC Scientific Council in light of experience.

Please note however that it is possible to participate in more than one ERC grant as a team member.

Q: If a Principal Investigator only has a Master Degree and no PhD, can they apply to the ERC Starting Grant 2019 (ERC-2019-STG) call?
A:

No, according to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 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 2019, Annex 2.

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 (ERC-2019-STG) 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 Starting Grant 2019 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 (2-7 years after the date of award of the PhD or 4-9 years past the medical doctor degree completion for Starters).

For more information please consult the ERC policy on PhD and equivalent doctoral degrees in the ERC Work Programme 2019 – Annex 2.

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 (ERC-2019-STG) call, what degrees are considered equivalent to a PhD?
A:

According to the ERC Work Programme 2019, in order to be eligible to apply a Principal Investigator must have been awarded a PhD or equivalent doctoral degree. It is recognised that there are some other doctoral titles that enjoy the same status and represent variants of the PhD in certain fields. All of them have similar content requirements. These cases will not be automatically considered eligible or ineligible but 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 recipients carry the title "Doctor".

For more information please consult the ERC policy on PhD and equivalent doctoral degrees in the ERC Work Programme 2019 - Annex 2 and section 4.3 of the Information for Applicants to the Starting and Consolidator Grant 2019 Calls.

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 (ERC-2019-STG) call, is a Medical Doctor degree equivalent to a PhD degree?
A:

According to the ERC Work Programme 2019, for medical doctors (or applicants holding a degree in medicine), a medical doctor degree will not be accepted by itself as equivalent to a PhD award. To be considered an eligible Principal Investigator, medical doctors (or applicants holding a degree in medicine) need to provide the certificates of both a medical doctor degree and a PhD or proof of an appointment that requires doctoral equivalency (e.g. post-doctoral fellowship, professorship appointment). Additionally, candidates must also provide information on their research experience (including peer reviewed publications) in order to further substantiate the equivalence of their overall training to a PhD. In these cases, the certified date of the medical doctor degree completion plus two years is the time reference for calculation of the eligibility time-window (i.e. 4-9 years past the medical doctor degree for Starters).

For more information, see sections 'Eligibility criteria' and 'ERC policy on PhD and equivalent doctoral degrees - Annex 2' of the ERC Work Programme 2019 and section 4.3 of the Information for Applicants to the Starting and Consolidator Grant 2019 Calls.

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 call (ERC-2019-STG), which date is considered a PhD date (or equivalent degree)?
A:

According to the ERC Work Programme 2019, the reference date towards the calculation of the eligibility period should be the date of the actual award according to the national rules in the country where the degree was awarded. The Information for Applicants to Starting and Consolidator Grant 2019 Calls complements that this is "generally, the date of successful defense/viva".

In case of applicants having been awarded several PhDs, the reference date is the award date of the first PhD.

In case of medical doctor degrees considered equivalent to PhD the certified date of the medical doctor degree completion plus two years is the time reference for calculation of the eligibility time-window.

For more information, see section 'Eligibility criteria' of the ERC Work Programme 2019 and its Annex 2.

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 call, what will happen if the PhD certificate is not submitted together with the proposal?
A:

According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 call, as long as no PhD document or equivalent is uploaded in the Participant Portal Submission Service (PPSS), it will not be possible to validate/submit the proposal. A warning message will inform the applicant of the missing document. If another document is uploaded instead and the PhD certificate is missing the ERCEA may contact the PI and ask for a clarification and the missing document.

For more information, see section 'Eligibility criteria' of the ERC Work Programme 2019.

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 call, what are eligible career breaks that are considered for the extension of the eligibility window?
A:

According to the conditions of the ERC Starting Grant 2019 call, eligible career breaks that can be considered for the extension of the eligibility window are:

  • Maternity or paternity leave (before or after PhD award),
  • Long-term illness (over ninety days for the Principal Investigator or a close family member) (after PhD award),
  • Clinical training (after award of first eligible degree and by up to 4 years max.),
  • National service (after PhD award).

All these circumstances need to be properly documented. Please find below examples of such documents:

  • For maternity: a birth certificate/passport of the child (ren), family book or any other official document where the link between the PI and the child (ren) is indicated.
  • For paternity leave taken: an official testimonial from employer or state benefit record certifying the actual duration of the paternity leave. The total number of days and the exact dates need to be specified. Part-time paternity leave is also accepted.
  • For clinical training: (an) official testimonial(s) certifying the actual duration(s) of the clinical (specialty) training(s)
  • For long-term illness (over ninety days),the documentation of the periods of medical / sick leaves must be issued by an official authority (e.g. the applicant's employer, health insurances, etc.) or by an authorised person such as the physician of the applicant (medical certificates).  
  • For national service: only the documented amount of leave taken for national service will be considered if they are issued by an official authority.

For more information, see section 'Eligibility criteria' of the ERC Work Programme 2019.

Q: According to the conditions applied to the ERC 2018 frontier research Grants 2018 [Starting (StG)/Consolidator (CoG)/Advanced (AdG)/Synergy (SyG)], can a Principal Investigator (PI) cover this role in more than one proposal at the same time?
A:

According to the conditions applied to the ERC 2018 frontier research Grants, there are three main restrictions to be considered for Principal Investigators (PIs) in this regard:

  • A PI may submit proposals to different ERC frontier research Grant calls made under the same Work Programme, but only the first eligible proposal will be evaluated.
  • A researcher may participate as PI or Co-Investigator in only one ERC frontier research project at any one time (NB: A new frontier research project can only start after the duration of the project fixed in a previous frontier research grant agreement has ended).
  • A researcher participating as PI in an ERC frontier research project may not submit a proposal for another ERC frontier research grant, unless the existing project ends no more than two years after the call deadline (NB: This is according to the duration of the project fixed in the previous frontier research grant agreement).

These restrictions are specified in the ERC Work Programme 2018 and may be modified in future Work Programmes by the ERC Scientific Council in light of experience.

As a team member, it is possible to participate in more than one ERC Grant.

Q: Are changes to ERC projects possible? How are these changes implemented in the Grant Agreement?
A:

Changes to the original proposal can be introduced during the preparation phase of the Grant Agreement and during the implementation of the action. Both types of changes require the ERC Scientific Department's approval. If the change intervenes after the signature of the grant agreement usually an amendment is required (cases of amendments are listed in the FP7 Guide for Amendments).

An amendment of the Description of Work (Annex I) is always needed for: a change in the scientific work or a change in the project's objectives; the removal/addition of tasks or substantial changes in the distribution of the work between beneficiaries (in case of multi-beneficiary grants); the introduction/removal of third parties and/or subcontractor (except for subcontracting of minor tasks); and the addition or removal of a beneficiary (including change of host institution).

Other changes require only an information letter, such as requests for sabbatical leaves and a change of authorised representative of the Host Institution.

Some changes do not require any amendment, such as changes in budget breakdown in between costs categories or in between reporting periods, etc. In this case the Project Officer should be informed.

When in doubt whether an amendment is needed, beneficiaries are encouraged to contact the ERCEA via the amendments functional mailbox: ERC-C2-AMENDMENTS@ec.europa.eu.

Q: Is it possible to extend an ERC Grant under FP7 without receiving further funds?
A:

In exceptional cases, the ERCEA may prolong the duration of a project. An extension may be granted in the following situations:

(1) on well-justified scientific grounds and provided that a high scientific value has been demonstrated in the project implementation;

(2) if the request was caused by events that were not reasonably foreseeable at the point of signing the grant;

(3) in cases of force majeure;

(4) for health reasons of the principal investigator (PI);

(5) in case of parental/maternity leave of the PI in line with the social legislation applicable in the Host country and Host Institution of the PI.

However, late starts or delays of administrative nature (e.g. purchase of equipment, recruitment of staff) are expected to be caught up during the life time of the project.

Only one extension may be accepted for one project. The ERC grant agreements may be extended by a maximum of 12 months, except for 'Proof of Concept' (PoC) grants for which the maximum extension is 6 months. These time limits do not apply in the above-mentioned cases relating to force majeure, health reasons and parental/maternity leave.

A request for extension can be submitted to the ERCEA only after the approval of the mid-term scientific report and no later than 6 months before the end of the project. Retro-active demands for extension will not be accepted. To extend a project, the ERC Grant Agreement has to be amended.

See Article II. 33 and II.35 of the General Conditions to FP7 ERC Grant Agreement.

Q: For ERC projects, are open access fees for monographs eligible costs?
A:

Yes, these costs are eligible if they are incurred during the lifetime of the project and provided that they are in line with the requirements for direct costs as listed in Article II.14 of the General Conditions of the ERC Grant Agreement Single and Multi-Beneficiary.

Q: For ERC projects, in which cases the question box in the scientific report, with refers to whether a publication has been or will be made open access, should be ticked?
A:

The box "Open access has been or will be provided?" should be ticked if: (1) the publisher has provided immediate open access, possibly after payment of an author publication charge (APC); or (2) the publication has been deposited in a repository for scientific publications and open access has been or will be provided through this repository either immediately or after the elapse of an embargo period.

If the Grant Agreement contains a Special Clause 39 ERC, then in principle the box should be ticked for all publications related to foreground from the project. In this case, if for some reason open access has not been provided to a publication related to foreground from the project and will not be provided within six months from publication, a justification must be included in the report, explaining the best efforts that have been made to provide open access to the publication, in line with the details explained in section 7.3 of the Guide to Intellectual Property Rules for FP7 projects.

Q: For ERC projects, what do the terms 'green open access' and 'gold open access' mean in the context of research publications?
A:

For ERC projects, there are two main routes towards open access to publications, both equally valid:

(1) Self-archiving (also referred to as 'green open access') means that the published article, monograph, book chapter etc. or the final peer-reviewed manuscript is archived (deposited) by the author - or a representative - in an online repository before, alongside or after its publication. Repository software usually allows authors to delay access to the article (embargo period);

(2) Open access publishing (also referred to as 'gold open access') means that open access to an article, monograph, book chapter etc. is provided by the publisher immediately upon publication. This route towards open access often (but not always) requires the payment of an open access fee to the publisher to compensate for lost income from subscriptions or from the purchase of the monograph/book. In the case of journal articles, these fees are usually called APCs (article processing charges).

Q: In order to provide open access to the publications of ERC-funded researchers, is it enough to post them on the project's webpage or on the department's website?
A:

If the Grant Agreement contains Special Clause 39 ERC, posting the publications on the project's webpage or the departments' website is not enough. The Special Clause clearly states that publications must be immediately deposited in a repository for scientific publications and that best efforts must be made to provide open access through this repository. The ERC Open Access Guidelines also state that publications should be deposited in a suitable repository immediately upon publication, with open access being provided as soon as possible.

Q: Are reviews covered by Special Clause 39 ERC on Open Access? Are they covered by the ERC Open Access Guidelines?
A:

Special Clause 39 ERC refers to scientific publications related to foreground from the project. Reviews typically provide an overview of developments in a specific area, but do not present the author's own new research results that have not been published elsewhere already. Therefore, reviews will typically not be covered by the Special Clause. However, ERC grantees are encouraged to provide open access also to any reviews that they may publish.

Q: Are monographs, books, book chapters, etc. also covered by Special Clause 39 ERC on Open Access? Are they covered by the ERC Open Access Guidelines?
A:

This is explained in detail in section 7.3 of the Guide to Intellectual Property Rules for FP7 projects (e.g. obtaining information about the journal policy on open access, informing the publisher about EU Commission policy on open access; requesting an amending clause to contracts to include open access, consider submitting to another journal, etc.). If it is not possible to deposit the publication in a repository and give it open access within six months, due to longer embargo periods imposed by the publisher, but it is possible to provide immediate open access by paying an article processing charge (APC) to the publisher, grantees are strongly encouraged to choose this second option.

Q: What does the term 'best effort' in Special Clause 39 ERC on Open Access mean?
A:

This is explained in detail in section 7.3 of the Guide to Intellectual Property Rules for FP7 projects (e.g. obtaining information about the journal policy on open access, informing the publisher about EU Commission policy on open access; requesting an amending clause to contracts to include open access, consider submitting to another journal, etc.). If it is not possible to deposit the publication in a repository and give it open access within six months, due to longer embargo periods imposed by the publisher, but it is possible to provide immediate open access by paying an article processing charge (APC) to the publisher, grantees are strongly encouraged to choose this second option.

Q: For ERC projects, is it necessary to provide open access to publications even for the non-main/corresponding author?
A:

If the Grant Agreement contains Special Clause 39 ERC, its provisions apply to all scientific publications related to foreground of the project, regardless whether the ERC funded author (PI or team member) is the main/corresponding author or not. If the Grant Agreement does not contain Special Clause 39 ERC, grantees should nevertheless consider providing open access to all publications resulting from the project on a voluntary basis, regardless whether the ERC funded author (PI or team member) is the main/corresponding author or not, as recommended in the ERC Open Access Guidelines.

Q: For FP7 ERC projects, is it necessary to provide open access to publications that appear after the end of the project?
A:

If the Grant Agreement contains a Special Clause 39 ERC, then its provisions apply also to publications published after the end of the project (without time limitation). If the Grant Agreement does not contain a Special Clause 39 ERC, then grantees should nevertheless consider providing open access to the publications resulting from the project (even after the end of the project) on a voluntary basis, as recommended in the ERC Open Access Guidelines.

Q: Is open access to publications mandatory for all ERC grants in FP7?
A:

For FP7 grants resulting from calls in the Work Programmes 2007-2011, there is no formal obligation to provide open access to publications. However, all grantees are strongly encouraged to comply with the ERC Open Access Guidelines. ERC grants resulting from calls in the 2012 and 2013 Work Programmes will normally contain a Special Clause 39 ERC which requires the immediate deposit of all publications related to foreground from the project in a repository for scientific publications. Best efforts must be made to ensure open access to the publication through this repository within six months from publication (and immediately if the publication has been published "open access", i.e. if it is also available free of charge via the publisher.

Q: If a researcher working for a third party to an ERC project publishes an article based on results of the project, do the open access provisions of Special Clause 39 ERC also apply in this case?
A:

For ERC projects, the Special Clause 39 ERC refers to scientific publications related to foreground from the project (where 'scientific' includes publications in the Social Sciences and Humanities). Whether the researcher who has published the article works directly for the beneficiary or for a third party is irrelevant.

Q: Are costs related to running an institutional open access repository for publications, which will also be used by ERC grantees for the publications from their project, eligible costs (on a pro-rata basis)?
A:

For ERC projects, such costs will normally not be directly attributable to the project and can thus not be claimed as direct costs. However, they may be considered eligible under indirect costs. For more details, please, consult the section on 'Indirect costs' of the FP7 Guide to Financial Issues (Part 2B, section 1 on article II.15 ECGA, sub-section 2).

Q: Concerning research data that have been generated or collected as part of the ERC project, are costs for their deposit in an open access data repository (run by an external organization) eligible?
A:

Yes, these costs are eligible if they are incurred during the lifetime of the project, and provided that they are in line with the requirements for direct costs as listed in Article II.14 of the General Conditions to the ERC Grant Agreement Single and Multi-Beneficiary.

Q: A former team member of an ERC project has published an article based on their work related to the project and wants to provide immediate open access to it by paying an article processing charge to the publisher. Is this an eligible cost?
A:

Yes, these costs are eligible if they are incurred during the lifetime of the project and provided that they are in line with the requirements for direct costs as listed in Article II.14 of the General Conditions of the ERC Grant Agreement Single and Multi-Beneficiary.

Q: An ERC funded researcher publishes a paper with a society publisher that offers large discounts on Open Access fees to its members. Are these membership fees eligible costs?
A:

Yes, if the net effect of taking out a membership in the society is a reduction in the cost of the article processing charges (APCs) that is higher than the cost of the membership fee, then the membership fee (for the year concerned) is an eligible cost, provided that it is in line with the requirements for direct costs as listed in Article II.14 of the General Conditions of the ERC Grant Agreement Single and Multi-Beneficiary.

Q: An ERC researcher wants to publish in a journal which allows 'green open access' with a six months embargo period. In case the researcher chooses instead 'gold open access' resulting in an article processing charge (APC), will this be an eligible cost?
A:

There is no requirement to use 'green open access' rather than 'gold open access'. If an ERC funded researcher opts for 'gold open access' although 'green open access' would be possible within the maximum acceptable delay of six months, costs related to APCs are still eligible, provided that they have been incurred during the lifetime of the project and that they are in line with the general rules for eligibility of direct costs as described in the Grant Agreement (see Article II.14.1.d of the General Conditions of the ERC Grant Agreement, Single and Multi-Beneficiary). If 'gold open access' is chosen, the publication must still be deposited in a repository for scientific publications and open access must be provided immediately to that deposited version (no embargo period).

Q: In some countries, 'habilitation' is a scientific degree awarded to formally acknowledge the achievement of research independence. Are holders of this degree eligible to apply to the ERC Consolidator Grant 2017?
A:

According to the conditions of the ERC Consolidator Grant 2017 call, there is no eligibility restriction to holders of a 'habilitation'. The reference date used for calculation of the applicant's eligibility is the PhD award date or medical doctor degree award date. 

For more information please consult the ERC policy on PhD and equivalent doctoral degrees in the ERC Work Programme 2017, Annex 2.

Q: ERC- 2017 PoC: Can an applicant submit to the ERC Proof of Concept call and also submit a proposal to one of the 3 main ERC Frontier Research calls (StG, CoG or AdG)?
A:

Yes, an applicant can submit to the ERC Proof of Concept 2017 call and at the same time to one of the 3 main ERC frontier research calls (since the restrictions stated in the ERC Work Programme 2017 do not apply to Proof of Concept grants).

Q: For a ERC 2017 Proof of Concept (PoC) grant, is it preferable to have a project of 12 or of 18 months?
A:

Where an ERC PoC proposal has initially indicated a duration of 12 months, during grant preparation Principal Investigators (PIs) are usually advised to go for a longer timespan (18 months) just in order to cope with eventual delays and always finish the ERC PoC project in an acceptable period of time, although the final decision will be with the PI. The reason is that under H2020, extensions of duration to PoC projects are typically not granted once the project has started. It should also be noted that in case a PI opts for the 18 months duration, but the project’s activities are finished within 12 months (or any other month before the 18th), the costs cannot be claimed for reimbursement immediately, but the PI will have to wait until the contractual end of the Grant in order to submit the Final Reports and cost claims (Article 20 of the GA).

More information can be found in the H2020 Model Grant Agreements for ERC Proof of Concept grants:

ERC POC mono-beneficiary MGA

ERC POC multi-beneficiary MGA

 

Q: For a European Research Council (ERC) 2017 Proof of Concept (PoC) grant, are timesheets needed for the Principal Investigator?
A:

Yes, the time sheets are needed if the PI charges salary to the ERC PoC action. All team members for which personnel costs are being charged should maintain timesheets of the hours worked on the project. See also Article 18.1 of the Annotated Model Grant Agreement.

Q: For the European Research Council (ERC) 2017 Proof of Concept (PoC) call, what is the general rule of Principal Investigator commitment?
A:

Although there is no minimum commitment percentage regarding the time that the Principal Investigator (PI) is required to work on the action, in the grant agreement the PI must enter a minimum of their working time, as the PI is responsible for managing the ERC PoC project. The cumulative percentage commitment that the PI spends on the ERC PoC action and on the main ERC StG/CoG/AdG grant (if still ongoing) must not exceed 100%.For more information please refer to the ERC Work Programme 2017.

Q: ERC-2017-PoC: In a Proof of Concept proposal, can the related costs for establishing a company (i.e. accountant, notary) be considered eligible?
A:

Yes, the related costs for establishing a company (i.e. accountant, notary) could be considered eligible, but only if the establishment of the company happens during the duration of the project and only if there is a need to bring a product on the market. The establishment of the company should not be an end in itself, it must be a mean to an end.Hence, either the POC project will bring a finished product on the market (and this result will happen during the project lifetime), or the cost of establishing the company is not eligible. As this result can hardly be planned in advance, it would be advisable not to include this type of costs in the budget.

Q: ERC 2017 PoC: Can a Co-investigator from a 2008-2011 European Research Council (ERC) Advanced Grant call be eligible to submit a ERC PoC proposal as Principal Investigator (PI)?
A:

No, Co-investigators (Co PI) are not eligible for an ERC Proof of Concept grant.

Only Principal Investigators (PI) in Research main grants (ERC Starting, Consolidator or Advanced grants), as well as PI and corresponding PI of Synergy grants are eligible to submit a proposal to the ERC Proof of Concept Call.

More information on the eligibility criteria for the Principal Investigator can be found in the ERC_Work_Programme_2017, section relevant to the call.

Q: ERC 2017 PoC: Can a spin-off company be the Host Institution for an ERC PoC proposal?
A:

Yes, submitting an application with a spin-off company as Host Institution is feasible, as long as it complies with the eligibility criteria defined in the ERC Work Programme 2017.

The Host Insitution (HI) of the ERC Proof of Concept proposal does not have to be the same as the Host Institution of the main frontier research grant.

Q: ERC 2017 PoC: What are the reporting requirements for an ERC Proof of Concept grant?
A:

In the ERC Proof of Concept grants, given the shorter length, the project report is required only once, at the end of the project, and will combine the technical and financial aspects in one single document.Article 20 of the H2020 ERC Proof of Concept Grant Agreement defines the reporting requirements. 

The ERC POC report must be prepared and submitted online via the Participant Portal.

Q: ERC 2017 PoC: What type of feedback will I receive for my proposal during and after evaluation for the European Research Council (ERC) Proof of Concept call?
A:

ERC Proof of Concept 2017 proposals are evaluated on a 'Pass/Fail' basis on each of the evaluation criteria. The applicant receives an evaluation report on the outcome. This indicates whether the proposal is retained for funding and provides the passed/failed status for each of the evaluation criteria, with corresponding comments given by the panel.

 

More information on the evaluation procedure can be found in the ERC Work Programme 2017, section relevant to the call.

Q: ERC 2017 PoC: Should the applicant to the Proof of Concept call provide the names and the Curriculum Vitae of the team members in the proposal?
A:

For the Proof of Concept 2017 Call, although it is not mandatory to provide the names of individual team members or their CVs, the Proof of Concept plan needs to include justification that the persons working on the tasks are well qualified for the purpose: the description of the team needs to be filled in Part B - section 3.

More information on the submission and evaluation procedures can be found in the ERC Work Programme 2017, section relevant to the call.

Q: ERC 2017 PoC: Do peer reviewers receive all parts of a proposal submitted to a Proof of Concept Call?
A:

For the Proof of Concept 2017 Call, applicants submit the whole proposal that is evaluated in a single step by the peer reviewers.For more information on the evaluation process, please refer to the ERC Work Programme 2017.

Q: ERC-2017-PoC: Can an applicant submit a proposal to the ERC Proof of Concept call and also submit a proposal to one of the 3 main ERC Frontier Research calls (StG, CoG or AdG)?
A:

Yes, an applicant could submit a proposal to the ERC Proof of Concept 2017 call and at the same time to one of the 3 main ERC frontier research calls (since the restrictions stated in the ERC Work Programme 2017 (http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/ref/h2020/wp/2016_2017/erc/h2020-wp17-erc_en.pdf) do not apply to Proof of Concept grants).

Q: ERC-2017-PoC: Are there any share or quota limitations per domain or discipline for the ERC Proof of Concept calls?
A:

There are no shares or quotas by domain or discipline for the ERC Proof of Concept 2017 call. No domain or field is excluded (*) and the possibility for innovation arising from the social sciences and humanities to apply for a Proof of Concept funding is fully recognised.

(*) As stated in the ERC Work Programme 2017, page 15: "Research proposals within the scope of Annex I to the Euratom Treaty, namely those directed towards nuclear energy applications, shall be submitted to relevant calls under the Euratom Framework Programme."

Q: ERC-2017-PoC call: If a proposal for an ERC PoC call was not granted in the first deadline (cut-off-date), can it be resubmitted by the second or third deadline of the same call?
A:

No, as stated in the ERC Work Programme 2017, a Principal Investigator may submit only one application per the ERC Proof of Concept 2017 call.Important note: More than one Proof of Concept Grant may be awarded per ERC funded frontier research project but only one Proof of Concept project may be running at any one time for the same ERC frontier research project.

Q: For ERC projects under FP7: where should I deposit/publish my open access articles?
A:

For ERC projects under FP7, ERC strongly encourages ERC funded researchers to use discipline-specific repositories for their publications (for Life Sciences Europe PubMed Central, http://europepmc.org; and for Physical Sciences and Engineering arXiv, http://arxiv.org. If there is no appropriate discipline specific repository, researchers should make their publications available in institutional repositories or in centralized ones, such as Zenodo,  http://www.zenodo.org. Although ResearchGate, Academia.edu and LinkedIn are well-known networking and information exchange portals among scientists and scholars, they do not qualify as an open access repositories.

Q: For ERC projects under FP7: Does the open access obligation concern only Principal Investigators or all the participants working on the grant's research?
A:

For ERC projects under FP7, the open access obligation involves all results of the project. Therefore, it also affects all team members working on the project, regardless whether the ERC funded author (Principal Investigator or team member) is the main/corresponding author or not.

Q: For ERC projects under FP7, is it acceptable to provide open access only to the most important publications related to my ERC project?
A:

For ERC projects under FP7, it is not acceptable to selectively provide open access. Open access should be ensured (and ERC should be acknowledged) in all peer-reviewed scientific publications relating to the ERC project results.

Q: How can the EU emblem be used by beneficiaries of EU programmes and other third parties?
A:

The European Union has a range of programmes which have been set up to support projects and initiatives in various domains across the EU and beyond.In accordance with the Commission's guidelines on visual identity, all EU programmes must be identified exclusively by the EU emblem and the mention of the programme name.The names of programmes, such as Horizon 2020 and FP7, will be used as verbal brands, i.e. references to them will be made without a specific logo.Commission services will apply the Commission’s visual identity guidelines when communicating about EU programmes. Beneficiaries of EU funding will use the European emblem in their communication to acknowledge the support received under EU programmes.The guidelines mentioned below are intended for beneficiaries of EU funding and other third parties who communicate about EU programmes to show how the European Union emblem can be used in conjunction with text which highlights the fact of EU funding.

For further information please see :  The use of the EU emblem in the context of EU programmes - Guidelines for beneficiaries and other third parties 

Q: What are the rules regarding using the EU flag as a logo?
A:

The European emblem (flag) may be used by third parties only if is not:

  • likely to create confusion between the user and the European Union or the Council of Europe;
  • linked to aims or activities incompatible with the principles and objectives of the European Union or the Council of Europe.In the case of EU-funded projects:
  • logos that are developed for projects funded by the EU, and that are not owned by the EU, may not be identical or similar to the European emblem (this includes logos that incorporate the twelve stars);
  • the European emblem should be given appropriate prominence when displayed in association with a logo;
  • contractors are exempt from the obligation to obtain prior permission from the Commission to use the emblem, but are subject to the general third-party-use restrictions mentioned above. This tacit authorization to use the European emblem implies no right of exclusive use. It does not permit the appropriation of the emblem, or of any similar trade mark or logo, whether by registration or by any other means.For further information please see :  Europa - The European Flag  (see the Graphics guide to the European flag link for more details)
Q: How can a candidate who was not continuously engaged in research or other professional activities during the previous ten years due to maternity/paternity leave, demonstrate her/his merit for the ERC-2018-AdG call?
A:

When applying to the ERC Advanced Grant (AdG) 2018 call, it is recommended that the researcher provides evidence of recent achievements of intellectual productivity and creativity. If a researcher returned to his/her original or new project(s) following a sabbatical leave, the reviewers are asked to take such circumstances into consideration.

For maternity, the track record considered can be extended by 18 months for each child born before or during the last ten years.

For paternity, the track record considered can be extended by the actual amount of paternity leave taken for each child born before or during the last ten years.

For long-term illness, clinical qualification or national service the track record considered can be extended by the amount of leave taken for each incident which occurred during the last ten years.

For more information, please refer to the ERC Work Programme 2018 or the Information for Applicants to the Advanced Grants 2018 call.

Q: Can a researcher who is nearing retirement apply to the call ERC-2018-Advanced Grant (AdG) call?
A:

Yes, an experienced researcher is welcome to apply to the ERC Advanced Grant (AdG) 2018 call at any stage of their career if (s)he can prove - independently of their age - that (s)he is still an active researcher with recent outstanding results. As stated in the ERC Work Programme 2018, Principal Investigators may be of any age and nationality and may reside in any country in the world at the time of the application.

The commitment and official support of a Host Institution is nevertheless required for the whole duration of the grant.

For more information, see the ERC Work Programme 2018 or the Information for Applicants to the Advanced Grant call.

Q: Are only PhD holders allowed to apply to the ERC-2018-Advanced Grant (ADG) call?
A:

No, a PhD is not formally required to submit a proposal to the ERC Advanced Grant (AdG) 2018 call. As specified in the ERC Work Programme 2018, excellence is the sole criterion for the evaluation of a proposal.

However, a Principal Investigator is expected to have outstanding research results within the last 10 years.

For more information, please refer to the ERC Work Programme 2018, or the Information for Applicants relevant for the call.

Q: If a researcher has less than ten years of research experience, can (s)he apply to the ERC 2018 Advanced Grant (AdG) call?
A:

A Principal Investigator can apply for an ERC Advanced Grant (AdG) 2018 call even if (s)he does not yet have ten years of research experience. However, applicants for the prestigious ERC Advanced Grant are expected to be active and established research leaders and have a track-record of significant research achievements in the last 10 years which must be presented in the application. The emphasis lies on recent outstanding research results which are not older than 10 years.

For more information on the expected profile of the Advanced Grant applicant, please refer to the ERC Work Programme 2018 or the Information for Applicants to the Advanced Grant call.

Q: Can a Principal Investigator whose proposal was submitted to the 2016 or 2017 ERC frontier research grants call and evaluated at the end of Step 1 as of insufficient quality to pass to Step 2 (C category), submit an application for the ERC 2018 AdG call?
A:

No, a Principal Investigator whose proposal was evaluated as category C in the step 1 Starting (StG), Consolidator (CoG) or Advanced (AdG) Grant calls for proposals under ERC Work Programme 2016 and 2017 may not submit a proposal to the ADG call for proposals made under Work Programme 2018

For more information, please refer to the restrictions on submission of proposals in the ERC Work Programme 2018.

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC-2018-Advanced Grant (ADG) call, can a small or medium-sized enterprise (SME) qualify as Host Institution (HI) to support an ERC project?
A:

Yes. Any SME (as defined by Commission Recommendation 2003/361/EC) can be a Host Institution for an ERC grant as long as it meets the conditions of eligibility of the Host Institution laid down in the ERC Work Programme 2018. The Principal Investigator decides in which Host Institution (s)he would like to implement the proposed project.

Q: Call ERC-2018-ADG: Can a Principal Investigator simultaneously engaged part-time by 2 different research organisations and leading a research group at both apply for an ERC AdG grant with both research groups executing the proposed project as one team?
A:

Yes, according to the conditions of the ERC Advanced Grant 2018 call, this is possible as long as the Principal Investigator is supported by one of the two research organisations as Host Institution (applicant legal entity) for the full duration of the grant (see the ERC Work Programme 2018). Other research organisation(s), the location of additional team members, should be referred to as (an) additional partner(s) in the research proposal (Part B) and their details should be given in the administrative proposal submission form in the Participant Portal Submission Service.

Q: Can a Principal Investigator who holds a permanent position in a research organisation in the US, apply to the call ERC-2018-ADG, with a Host Institution located in Europe?
A:

Yes, a Principal Investigator engaged in the US or in a third country, can apply for an ERC Advanced Grant (AdG) 2018, as long as (s)he will be engaged and hosted by a Host Institution based in an EU Member State or an Associated Country for the whole duration of the grant (see the ERC Work Programme 2018 for the eligibility conditions).

Principal Investigators funded through the ERC Advanced Grants have to spend a minimum of 50% of their total working time in an EU Member State or Associated Country and a minimum of 30% of their total working time on the ERC project (see the ERC Work Programme 2018 for the Advanced Grant Profile).

Q: According to the conditions of the ERC AdG 2017 call, do the re-submission rules apply only to Principal Investigators and Co-Investigators, or also to team members? Can a team member, working in a project financed by an ERC AdG, apply for a StG or CoG?
A:

According to the conditions of the ERC Advanced Grant 2017 call, the restrictions on applications only apply to Principal Investigators and Co-Investigators (Co-Investigator projects were supported under the Ideas Work Programmes from 2008 – 2011).

There is no restriction for a team member to submit a proposal to an ERC grant as Principal Investigator as long as the required working-time commitment can be respected.

For more information, please see the ERC Work Programme 2017 : Restrictions on submission of proposals.