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15 March 2019

Listen and learn with Nature Careers and the ERC. Six new podcasts provide first-hand accounts of exactly how the ERC works and how its grants and other schemes could provide an opportunity for you to further your career.

ERC grants have the power to accelerate scientific careers. They enable young principal investigators achieve professional independence. They help accomplished researchers, in the middle stages of their careers, to consolidate their teams. They propel European research leaders onto the global stage. Earlier this year we spoke to eight people whose careers benefitted in different ways from the ERC.

Among them was a young researcher from Romania, chairwoman of an ERC grant evaluations panel, a scientist who return to Europe with an ERC grant, a Canadian doctor who temporarily joined an ERC team in Europe, a member of the Nobel Assembly, and the ERC President. The result is a series of revealing perspectives that will give you an insight into the various opportunities provided by the ERC.

How the ERC functions – with Jean-Pierre Bourguignon

ERC president Jean-Pierre Bourguignon explains the functioning of the European Research Council, its key messages and growing importance for the scientific community, as well as some advice for potential applicants for ERC grants.

How the grant evaluation process functions – with Alex Martin-Hobdey and Maria Leptin

Alex Martin Hobdey heads the ERC evaluation process team in charge of receiving grant proposals, organising their evaluation and later on sending out the results. In this episode, Alex explains the entire process.
The podcast also includes encouraging words to ERC applicants from Prof Maria Leptin, who chaired an ERC grant evaluation panel.

ERC Starting grantee explains her career path - with Alina Badescu

ERC grantee Alina Badescu, associate professor at the Politehnica University of Bucharest, explains her project, the importance of her ERC grant in setting up her team and the improvements made in the science field in Romania.
Prof. Badescu received an ERC Starting Grant to study the detection of cosmic neutrinos in salt mines. Also see: ERC Story on Prof Badescu.

Grantees who chose Europe over the USA - with Juleen Zierath and Lydia Lynch

Two eminent scientists who decided to come back to Europe to pursuit their scientific careers. ERC grantee Juleen Zierath is a professor of physiology at the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, Sweden, and also the Executive Director of the Novo Nordisk Foundation Center for Basic Metabolic Research at the University of Copenhagen.
Also see: Interview with Prof Zierath. Prof. Lydia Lynch is an immunologist and associated professor at Trinity College Dublin.
Listen to the reasons for their return and the role played by the ERC funding in these decisions. Also see: ERC Story on Prof Lynch.

Grantee with a late start in science – with Joaquim Alves Gaspar

Inspiring life choices from one of our early science-career grantees: Joaquim Alves Gaspar had an initial 40 year career in the Portuguese Navy before completing a PhD in the History of Cartography and applying for an ERC Starting Grant. Also see: ERC Story on Dr Gaspar.

How non-EU based researchers can temporarily join ERC funded research teams – with Jean-Pierre Bourguignon and Helen Tremlett

This last podcast describes opportunities for non-EU researchers to spend time in ERC-funded teams. It starts with Prof. Bourguignon’s priorities, in terms of the evaluation process for 2019.
This is followed by followed by testimony from Helen Tremlett, Canadian researcher in neuroepidemiology and multiple sclerosis, concerning her experiences with an ERC team at Max Planck Institutes.

These episodes originally featured as a sponsored section in Nature Career’s Working Scientist podcast. They were produced for the European Research Council by Nature Research Custom Media, which operates independently of other Nature Research editorial departments.