ERC Starting Grants (English)

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The National Contact Point ERC is a cooperation between the EU-Bureau of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (EU-Büro des BMBF) and the European Liaison Office of the German Research Organisations (KoWi).

ERC Starting Grants

ERC Starting Grants support promising researchers who are at the beginning of an independent research career. The creation of their own research team will be funded with the grant.

For the evaluation of the researcher profile several benchmarks according to research domain and career development are taken into account. Benchmarks include publications as main author in high-ranking international journals, (translated) monographs, patents, conference presentations or (inter)national prizes and awards.


Starting Grants in brief:


Who is qualified: 2 to 7 years after PhD (extension is possible, e.g. for parental leave; special rules for MDs)

Budget and duration of the funding: up to EUR 1.5 million for a maximum of 5 years (an additional top-up of up to EUR 1 Million can be granted)

Topic of the project: open to all fields of research ("bottom-up")

What will be funded: 100 % direct costs plus 25 % overhead for indirect costs

Host institution: universities/universities of applied sciences, research institutes, companies and international organisations with registered offices in an EU Member State or FP-Associated Country

Application: one-step submission online at specific deadlines and two-step evaluation (including interview in Brussels at step 2)

Evaluation: Proposals submitted for the ERC are being evaluated by independent experts within an internationaly oriented peer-review-procedure
The sole selection criterion is scientific excellence. This applies to the profile of the principle investigator as well as to the project idea. Marks will be given for both criteria (A/B/C).

Step 1 (only part B1 will be evaluated):

  • A: of sufficient quality to pass to Step 2 of the evaluation
  • B: of high quality but not sufficient to pass to Step 2
  • C: of insufficient quality

Step 2 (full proposal will be evaluated):

  • A: project is recommended for funding
  • B: project is not recommended for funding

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Open calls for proposals

Open calls are published via the Funding & tender Portal.


Related Documents Call 2020 can be found here.

Date for Call 2021 

Planned date for Call 2022

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Results of previous Calls

Results of the previous calls (lists of funded projects and statistics) can be found at the ERC’s website.


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