The SFI ERC Support Programme provides an additional overhead payment to the Host Institution of ERC award winners, who may either have won their ERC award while working at an Irish Host Institution, or who may have recently been recruited to an Irish Host Institution from abroad; the funding is intended to help the associated ERC awardees to successfully carry out their ERC-funded research.
The aims of the SFI ERC Support Programme are:
- To enhance the benefits of applying to ERC schemes for institutions and applicants
- To increase the participation of Ireland-based researchers in all ERC schemes
- To provide greater institutional support for Ireland-based ERC awardees
- To increase Ireland’s success rate across all ERC schemes
- To help recruit excellent ERC-funded researchers to Irish Host Institutions
- The applicant must be an appointed senior representative (e.g., Dean, Vice President for Research, etc.) of the Research Office of an SFI eligible Research Body hosting the research programme of an ERC awardee who is either already based at their own institution or who can demonstrate that they have officially transferred, or will officially transfer, their ERC award to their institution.
- The corresponding ERC awardee must have been successful in either the ERC Starting Grant, ERC Consolidator Grant, ERC Advanced Grant or ERC Synergy Grant schemes.
- The corresponding ERC awardee must have submitted their proposal to one of the ERC panels that are listed as being part of the Physical Sciences and Engineering (PE1 – PE10) domain or the Life Sciences (LS1 – LS9) domain. Applications associated with awardees who applied to a panel within the Social Sciences and Humanities (SH) domain are not eligible through this call, even where a secondary panel was selected in either the PE or LS domains.
- The theme of the research proposal that resulted in the corresponding ERC award must be aligned with SFI’s legal remit.
Support available through the SFI ERC Support Programme is dependent upon whether the ERC awardee associated with the application was successful in winning their award while already based in an Irish Host Institution or whether they will be transferring their ERC award from another country to Ireland. An exception to this exists for the holders of SFI Research Professorship Programme awards:
a) Applications where the ERC awardee is already associated with an Irish Host Institution:
For applications of this type, associated with awardees who were successful through the 2016 (or later) calls to the ERC schemes listed above, funding will be provided to the Host Institution at a fixed rate of €150,000 for all ERC schemes. The award will consist of an overhead payment to the host Research Body (not the ERC award holder), paid as a contribution to the indirect costs of hosting an ERC-funded research programme. The funding is intended to enable the Research Body to develop high-quality research infrastructure and support services for the ERC awardee.
b) Applications where the ERC awardee will transfer their award to an Irish Host Institution:
For applications of this type, the maximum funding available will depend upon the ERC scheme in which the awardee was successful, as follows:
- ERC Starting Grant: up to €300,000
- ERC Consolidator Grant: up to €400,000
- ERC Advanced Grant: up to €500,000
- ERC Synergy Grant: up to €500,000
As above, the award will be an overhead payment made to the host Research Body.
c) Applications where an SFI Research Professor wins an ERC award:
The host institutions of SFI Research Professorship Programme awardees who are subsequently successful in winning additional funding through the ERC Advanced Grant or ERC Synergy Grant schemes will be entitled to apply for additional overhead support at a maximum level of €500,000, despite being won at an Irish host institution. For cases where an SFI Research Professor succeeds in winning an ERC Consolidator Grant, the overhead support available will be at a maximum level of €400,000. It is not envisaged that SFI Research Professors will be eligible to apply for ERC Starting Grants. The additional support is available for all SFI Research Professors who win ERC grants, including those holding a joint appointment, but the ERC award must be hosted at the same institution as the SFI Research Professorship award for the higher-level support to be available.
This programme will run as a rolling call for applications. Where the ERC award was associated with any Irish Host Institution, applications to this Programme should be received no later than six months after the date that has been agreed with the ERC for the commencement of the award. An alternative situation exists where an ERC awardee has been recruited to Ireland. In this situation, an application to this Programme may be submitted after the arrangements for relocation have been agreed (evidence of these arrangement is mandatory). SFI ERC Support Programme awards will only be made if a reasonable amount of time remains on the ERC award following transfer to an Irish Host Institution. The level of funding awarded in such instances will be decided on a case-by-case basis that may be determined by the time remaining on the ERC award.
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