The European Research Council: Scale us up!

The Scientific Council of the European Research Council (ERC), the EU’s body funding individual researchers in frontier research, has laid out its argument for a larger slice of EU funding. They use their 10-year track record to argue for a doubling in funds in the next Framework Programme


After giving an overview of the rationale and success of the European Research Council (ERC), the Scientific Council, which sets the ERC’s strategy and methodology, split its vision of the future for the ERC into three parts: continuity, agility and scale-up.

In calling for continuity, the group request protection of the ERC’s current operational autonomy from the European Commission. Next, they seek continued agility in how and what they fund in order to keep up with science. Finally, the Scientific Council discuss their vision for scaling up. The authors say that the ERC needs to become one of the largest public funding bodies in Europe and more than double its yearly budget to €4 billion. They justify this increase as needed in order to fund all project applications deemed excellent, and cement the ERC’s place in EU research and innovation.

From the text:

“We can safely claim that the ERC concept has been tested and proved.

“None of ERC's achievements would have been possible without an appropriate legal framework establishing the autonomy of the ERC.”

Read the full statement

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Related subjects: FP9 Policy