What type of grants does the ERC fund in Horizon Europe?
All European Research Council (ERC) grants operate on a 'bottom-up' basis across all research fields (apart from nuclear energy research), without predetermined priorities. ERC funding aims to provide attractive, long-term funding to support excellent principal investigators (PIs) and their research teams to pursue groundbreaking, high-gain/high-risk research. ERC funded research is expected to lead to advances at the frontiers of knowledge. Excellence is the sole criterion for funding, both of the PI and of the research project and the PI must be able to clearly demonstrate the ground-breaking nature, ambition and feasibility of their scientific proposal.
The maximum grant amount provided by the EC varies according to the grant type and covers direct personnel costs, and research related costs as well as providing a contribution towards overheads/indirect costs as outlined in the ERC Work Programme.
ERC Frontier Research Grants
Starting Grants are designed to support PIs at the stage at which they are starting their own independent research team or programme. To be eligible, the PI must be 2-7 years from their PhD, which is extendable in certain strict cases.
Consolidator Grants are designed to support PIs at the stage at which they are consolidating their own independent research team or programme. To be eligible, the PI must be over 7 and up to 12 years from their PhD, which is extendable in certain strict cases.
Advanced Grants aim to support PIs at the career stage at which they are already established research leaders with a recognised track record of research achievements. Advance Grants intended to promote substantial advances in the frontiers of knowledge, and to encourage new productive lines of enquiry and new methods and techniques.
Synergy Grants are intended to enable minimum two to maximum four Principal Investigators and their teams to bring together complementary skills, knowledge, and resources in new ways, in order to jointly address ambitious research problems.
Proof of Concept grants fund ERC grant holders to establish the innovation potential of an idea developed during the course of an ERC-funded project. The scheme aims to build upon ideas which draw substantially from research that has been funded by the ERC, increasing the opportunities for commercial or societal application of the frontier research.
Visiting Research Fellowships: A number of European countries fund research visits via national or regional funding agencies, to established ERC projects in order to develop researchers' potential. Vistitng researchers are expected to apply for their first ERC grant within a time frame specified by the funder upon their return.
International Arrangement funding: A number of non-European countries have established international agreements with the ERC that enable early-career researchers to temporarily join ERC teams in Europe.