The ERC plans to reintroduce the Synergy Grants under the Work Programme 2018.
However, Timing and conditions are not set yet. This page describes the details of the Synergy Grant scheme of 2013.
IntroductionGroups applying to the 'ERC Synergy Grants' must be made of a minimum of two and a maximum of four Principal Investigators, and their teams. One of the PI's must be designated as the Corresponding Principal Investigator.
ERC Synergy Grants are intended to bring together complementary skills, knowledge, and resources in new ways, in order to jointly address research problems that could lead to breakthroughs that would not be possible by the individual PI working alone.
It is expected that in most cases ERC Synergy groups will be interdisciplinary, often using multidisciplinary approaches, and will be physically located in the same place to ensure face to face contact for significant periods of "core time" over the course of the project.
The general principles of the ERC funding schemes apply as well for the 'Synergy Grants': focus on the individual PI’s, bottom-up approach without predefined priorities and scientific excellence as sole evaluation criterion.
In 2012 and 2013 the maximum funding per project was 15 million euros for a period up to six years. It is likely that this sum will be reduced for the upcoming call 2018.
More Information on the details of the scheme in 2013 is available in chapter 7 of the work programme 2013, (p. 28 f)
This page describes the details of the Synergy Grant scheme of 2013.
The conditions might change for the upcoming call 2018.
Proposals are submitted by the Corresponding Principal Investigator on behalf of the group. Together all the Principal Investigators have scientific responsibility for the group's project on behalf of the Host Institution (HI) which is the applicant legal entity.
Each Principal Investigator (PI) has to provide a CV and an 'early achievement record' or a '10-year track record' depending on the PI’s career stage. Furthermore, it is required to provide a scientific proposal (15 pages) and an extended synopsis of the proposal (5 pages).
The Host Institution of the Corresponding Principal Investigator must confirm its association with and its support to the group's project. As part of the application, the institution must provide a binding statement of support that the conditions of independence are already fulfilled or will be provided to the group if the application is successful.
This page describes the details of the Synergy Grant scheme of 2013. The conditions might change for the upcoming call 2018.
A one-step application is followed by a two-step evaluation:
The evaluation will be conducted by means of five high level peer review panels which will be formed from a pool of around 50 reviewers in a dynamic way to ensure the best expertise for a group of proposals. The full proposal will be assessed. In case of oversubscription, the panels may decide to identify the less competitive proposals on the basis of the extended synopsis.
The selected proposals will be reassessed by a single panel of around 15 experts. Based on this assessment a subset of proposals will be selected for interviews in Brussels. Site visits may be conducted in cases where features of the site form a significant part of the proposal.
Independent experts, including remote referees may be involved to assist the panel(s) in step 1 and step 2.
You can find the names of the experts of the previous calls here:
The ERC plans to relaunch the Synergy Grants under the Work Programme 2018 which will probably be published in summer 2017. Dates for opening and closing of the call are not fixed yet.
For the first call for proposals of the Synergy Grants 2012 the ERC receicved 710 applications; 11 projects were funded. The second call 2013 attracted 449 proposals; 13 projects were funded.
All funded projects can be found here.