Competitive EU funding that is granted based on the quality of research is a significant opportunity for universities. In Aalto University, the amount of this kind of funding has been increasing steadily.
From the seventh framework programme FP7, European Research Council ERC granted funding for researchers aiming towards scientific breakthroughs in 2007-2013. Out of the recipients of these grants, Aalto placed 55th with a clearly improving placement towards the end of the programme.
In the new Horizon 2020 framework programme, Aalto is already in the top 50 of universities ranked based on the amount of received funding. Aalto has received several grants from the Horizon 2020 programme: The ERC Starting grant was awarded to Professor Antti Oulasvirta for the development of the usability of information technology, and to Professor Jani Oksanen for researching LED cooling. The ERC Consolidator Grant was given to Professor Emma Master for research into the use of proteins and enzymes in treating natural resources. The ERC Advanced Grant was awarded to Professor Pertti Hakonen for using ultra-low temperature technologies to discover and create quantum systems.
"My warmest congratulations to all grant recipients. Many applicants from Aalto made it to the final stages of the application process. Even though they were not awarded grants, getting an invitation for an interview is a great acknowledgement of the high quality of your research, and an invitation predicts success for the future," says Vice President (Research and Innovation) Tuija Pulkkinen.Aalto University's share of the ERC funding granted to Finland is significant; a total of eight ERC Starting Grants, three ERC Consolidator Grants and two ERC Advanced Grants have been granted to Finland from the Horizon 2020 programme. In addition to ERC grants, the Horizon 2020 framework programme funding includes consortia grants. All in all, Aalto was awarded 17 million euros from the applications submitted in 2014.