The ERC in 2022: new plans and biggest ever annual budget

The European Research Council (ERC) has published their second work programme under Horizon Europe. This work programme for 2022 is backed by the biggest ever annual budget for ERC grants – a powerful sign of Europe’s continuing support for frontier research. The funding aims to empower individual researchers and provide the best settings to foster their creativity. It is intended to support bottom-up, ground-breaking and high-risk/high-gain research across all fields, on the sole basis of scientific excellence.

In order to foster a new generation of European talents, a large part of the budget is earmarked for early- and midcareer scientists (Starting and Consolidator Grants) with over 850 estimated number of grants. Find out whether the ERC grants are of interest to your research project.

Highlights of the 2022 work programme

In 2022, Synergy Grants and Proof of Concept Grants are back on offer. In addition, ERC has announced new plans in their 2022 work programme, which I will highlight below:

  • After a successful pilot competition in 2020, the ERC will run the second edition of the Research Awards for public engagement. The awards will recognise three ERC grantees, with a prize of € 10.000 each, in the three categories: “Involve” for citizen science, “Inspire” for public outreach, and “Influence” for media and policy. The competition is expected to open on 5 October 2021.
  • As a measure to ease the Covid-19 impact for researchers, the work programme includes the possibility for applicants to mention in their research proposal (part B1) any specific situation caused by the pandemic that had a negative impact on their CV or track record. This will be taken into account during the evaluation of proposals.
  • To be eligible for calls with deadlines in 2022, the institutions to host ERC grantees must have a gender equality plan or an equivalent strategic document in place at the time of the signing of the grant and for the duration of the project.
  • The ERC has also announced its formal endorsement of the San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA), in order to facilitate an equitable transition to Open Science.

ERC deadlines and budgets for work programme 2022

  Starting Grant Consolidator Advanced Grant Synergy Grant
Budget (estimated number of grants) € 749 million (502) € 776 million (388) € 555 million (223) € 297 million (33)
Call opens 23 September 2021 19 October 2021 20 January 2022 15 July 2021
Call deadline 13 January 2022 17 March 2022 28 April 2022 10 November 2021
Planned date to inform applicants of each step
  • 22 July 2022
  • 9 December 2022
  • 2 September 2022
  • 1 February 2023
  • 19 December 2022
  • 3 April 2023
  • 12 May 2022
  • 5 September 2022
  • 8 November 2022

Extensive and excellent support in ERC grants

Hezelburcht is specialized in supporting universities and research institutes with acquiring grants. We provide full service in applying for European grants like the ERC: from reviewing to grant writing and management. Our specialists are graduated researchers themselves and supported several clients with their ERC applications.

If you have any questions concerning the EU grants and our support, please let us know. My colleagues and I are pleased to help you!

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