New UT grant for researchers applying for ERC grants

To encourage researchers to apply for European Research Council grants, the Grant Office has developed and is piloting a 10,000-euro UT ERC Incentive Grant. Its purpose is to free up the applicant’s time for writing a research grant application. The first call for applications takes place in the autumn already and will involve up to 20 researchers.

The European Research Council (ERC) grants are among the largest and most prestigious individual research grants in the world. The number of promising applicants at the University of Tartu could be quite big as the number of UT researchers who are influential in their field has steadily grown. However, one of the main obstacles to writing successful ERC grant applications is the academic staff’s lack of time. To support researchers in applying for ERC grants, the University of Tartu Grant Office has developed an intra-university funding instrument called the ERC Incentive Grant.

To apply for the ERC Incentive Grant, the applicant must have an active employment relationship with the University of Tartu. The Incentive Grant amount is 10,000 euros and researchers applying either for the ERC Starting Grant or Consolidator Grant are eligible to apply. The grant will be awarded to the institute, who can use it together with the researcher applying for the ERC to cover the direct expenses (for example, the salary costs) necessary to release the researcher from other obligations, for example teaching and research managerial commitments, during the time of writing the ERC grant application. The grant can also be used for the reimbursement of consultancy costs, proofreading or editing and other costs related to project writing (excluding the overheads). For the time being, the pilot grant is not offered to applicants for the ERC Advanced Grant.

The Rector’s Office gave their approval to the UT ERC Incentive Grant pilot project at their meeting on 22 June. The grants will be paid to researchers from the university’s development fund.

Further information: Eveli Kuuse, Senior Grant Advisor, Grant Office,