Starting Grant (StG)

The 2017 call is now closed (deadline: Oct 18, 2016)



ERC Starting Grants are designed to support excellent Principal Investigators at the career stage at which they are starting their own independent research team or programme. Applicant Principal Investigators must demonstrate the ground breaking nature, ambition and feasibility of their scientific proposal.


Starting Grants may be awarded up to a maximum of EUR 1 500 000 for a period of 5 years (pro rata for projects of shorter duration18).

However, up to an additional EUR 500 000 can be requested in the proposal to cover (a) eligible "start-up" costs for Principal Investigators moving from a another country to the EU or an Associated Country as a consequence of receiving the ERC grant and/or (b) the purchase of major equipment and/or (c) access to large facilities19.


The Principal Investigator shall have been awarded their first PhD at least 2 and up to 7 years prior to the publication date of the call for proposals of the ERC Starting Grant. The effective elapsed time since the award of the first PhD can be reduced in certain properly documented circumstances (see “Eligible Principal Investigator” above).

A competitive Starting Grant Principal Investigator must have already shown the potential for research independence and evidence of maturity. For example, it is expected that applicants will have produced at least one important publication without the participation of their PhD supervisor. Applicant Principal Investigators should also be able to demonstrate a promising track-record of early achievements appropriate to their research field and career stage, including significant publications (as main author) in major international peer-reviewed multidisciplinary scientific journals, or in the leading international peer-reviewed journals of their respective field. They may also demonstrate a record of invited presentations in well-established international conferences, granted patents, awards, prizes etc.


The question of whether the Principal Investigator is strongly committed to the project and demonstrates the willingness to devote a significant amount of time to the project forms a key part of the evaluation.

Principal Investigators funded through the ERC Starting Grants shall spend a minimum 50% of their total working time on the ERC project and a minimum of 50% of their total working time in an EU Member State or Associated Country.

Principal Investigators shall ensure a sufficient time commitment and presence throughout the course of the project to guarantee its proper execution.



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