In 2016, the European Research Council (ERC) launched an initiative called “Fellowships to Visit the ERC Grantee”. It aims to encourage participation and increase the success of researchers from those EU countries that are significantly under-represented in ERC calls. The ERC has recommended that national and/or regional authorities and organisations set up programmes to support potential ERC grant applicants’ stays with ERC project researchers and their teams. Such programmes will enable selected candidates to strengthen their research profile and improve the preparation of their own future projects in an internationally competitive environment before applying for an ERC grant.
The aim of the programme “SAS-UPJS ERC Visiting Fellowship Grants”, which is part of the ERC initiative, is to support and strengthen the participation of scientists from SAS organisations and Pavol Jozef Šafárik University in Košice (UPJŠ) in ERC calls, to provide them with the opportunity to gain, in cooperation with ERC project researchers and their teams, the experience and skills needed for quality project preparation and management.
For SAS applicants: The grant is awarded by the SAS for a period of 1 – 3 months in the amount of max. 12,000 EUR (up to 4,000 EUR per month). It is intended to cover travel costs, including local transport costs, accommodation, meals and allowances for applicants who are SAS employees.
The “SAS-UPJŠ ERC Visiting Fellowship Grants” is open to scientists from all disciplines. The applicant must meet the following conditions:
- be an employee of the SAS organisation (applies to applicants from SAS organisations) or UPJŠ (applies to applicants from UPJŠ),
- demonstrate the quality of research and outputs at a level corresponding to the conditions of the ERC,
- submit a plan of stay, including an outline of the future ERC project proposal (the so-called outline)
- submit an invitation letter from the ERC project researcher,
- in the case of a grant award, the applicant undertakes to submit an application for an ERC project to one of the ERC calls no later than two years after the end of the stay, while the project will be solved in the SAS organisation (applies to applicants from SAS organisations), or at UPJŠ (applies to applicants from UPJŠ),
- if the applicant does not meet the condition to apply for an ERC project within two years of the end of the stay, s/he is obliged to return the financial support in full.
The evaluation process is open and transparent. Each proposal will be evaluated by two independent external internationally recognized evaluators. The main evaluation criterion is the excellence of the research and the potential of the applicant to receive an ERC grant.
The selection of applicants from the SAS will be made based on the evaluation by the SAS Commission for the evaluation of international projects or by an ad hoc commission based on the decision of the SAS Presidium. The final decision on the award of grants will be made by the Presidium of SAS.
Proposals for the grant awarding are submitted on the attached form in English electronically to the email address firstname.lastname@example.org, printed out and signed by the Department of International Cooperation of the SAS Office (PhDr. Ľudmila Dolná, PhD.). The structure of the invitation letter, as well as the so-called form outline, can be found in the files to download. A list of ERC project researchers who are willing to accept an applicant to stay at their place of work is available on request.
No call is currently open