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16-03-2020

The ERC is taking steps to try to minimise the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic on its operations, while ensuring the safety and wellbeing of our staff and the people with whom we work.

Like other Commission Services and Agencies, the majority of our staff are now working remotely. We are doing our best to ensure that they remain fully operational during this exceptional period.

Panel evaluations of proposals are currently being organised remotely. We were able to finalise Step 1 evaluations of Starting Grants on schedule. We are grateful to our panel members and applicants for their flexibility and understanding, and to our staff for working under very challenging circumstances prior and during such remote panel meetings. For the moment, we do not anticipate any delays with upcoming evaluations or application deadlines.

Our grant management activities are continuing as usual, although it is not excluded that certain technical and/or IT access constraints might affect our response timeline. The competent central services are doing their best to minimise the impact.

We are aware that many ERC funded research projects are facing disruption and delays that will require postponing the start date, for those which have not started yet, or extending the project duration, or other actions. We invite ERC grantees and their host institutions to flag any problems to their usual counterparts in the ERC's scientific and granting departments. We are collecting and analysing these requests, and we invite ERC grantees to consult the FAQs for beneficiaries of the Horizon 2020 Programme to find adequate solutions using the flexibility provided by the grant agreement. Please note responses from the ERC to such requests may take a bit longer than usual due to current circumstances, but we will get back to you as soon as we can with further guidance on how to proceed.

We are continuing to monitor the situation closely and will provide further information as necessary to grantees and applicants. We invite you to consult this website and our social media accounts regularly for updates.