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ERC Grants

ERC Grants

ERC Grants

The European Research Council (ERC) mission is to encourage the highest quality research in Europe through competitive funding and to support investigator-driven frontier research across all fields, on the basis of scientific excellence.

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The ERC complements other funding activities in Europe such as those of the national research funding agencies, and is a flagship component of Horizon Europe, the EU Research Framework Programme for 2021to 2027.

ERC grants are awarded through open competition to projects headed by starting and established researchers, irrespective of their origins, who are working or moving to Europe. The sole criterion for selection is scientific excellence. The aim here is to recognise the best ideas, give visibility to the best scientists in Europe, while also attracting talent from abroad.


ERC grants at ULisboa

A recent study identifies ULisboa as the national institution hosting the largest number of ERC grants in the period between 2007 and 2022.

A total of 37 ERC grants were awarded to researchers developing their projects at ULisboa, representing 25% of the total grants awarded to Portugal and making ULisboa the most awarded national institution.

Of the total number of awarded grants, 14 are starting grants, 11 consolidator grants, 6 advanced grants, 5 proof of concept and 1 synergy grant.

The institutions at ULisboa that received more grants are the iMM with 17 grants, IST with 7 and ICS with 5.

With regard to the most represented scientific fields, 11 grants belong to the area of Life Sciences, 9 to Physical Sciences and Engineering and 9 to Social Sciences and humanities.

Researchers at ULisboa obtained approximately 62 M€ in ERC grants.


ERC 2023 Programme

The ERC, established by the European Commission has announced its Work Programme for 2023.
The budget with a total of around €2.2 billion for grants will support more than a thousand top researchers across Europe.

While the plan contains all the 5 well-known grant schemes: 1) Starting; 2) Consolidator; 3) Advanced; 4) Proof of concept e 5) Synergy, there are also new elements:

a)  The budget for the Proof of Concept grant scheme will increase from €25 to €30 million;
b)  Two additional grounds for extension of the eligibility windows for the candidates for Starting and Consolidator Grants will be introduced for researchers seeking asylum or being a victim of a natural disasters;
c)  A special grant is foreseen to support ERC Science Journalism Initiative that will entail a support for journalists wishing to spend time at research institutions to better understand frontier research.


Training and capacity building of researchers

The incentive and support of applications to competitive programmes, through the strengthening of dissemination actions and capacity building and support mechanisms, allows the promotion of competitiveness and performance, in addition to capturing and retaining the best national and international talent. ULisboa has promoted regular training actions aimed at individual candidates for ERC grants, in addition to courses for teams applying for Horizon Europe collaborative projects, in conjunction with Enspire Science, a specialist in training for attracting European research funding.

The 3rd edition of the ULisboa Online Course "ERC Beyond" has recently taken place, in which the number of applications from researchers associated with the 18 ULisboa Schools largely exceeded the number of vacancies. In June 2023, the 4th edition of the Online Course "ERC Beyond" at ULisboa will take place.

In September 2022, the 1st edition of the online course "Horizon" will take place.


When to apply


Starting Grant

Consolidator Grant

Advanced Grant

Synergy Grant

Proof of concept Grant

Call opens






Call deadline date for signature of Grant agreements






Tentative date for Grant Agreements







How to apply

Read the ERC Work Programme 2023


Open calls for applications 2023

Starting Grant

Synergy Grant