Mid-July has seen the adoption of the European Research Centre 2022 work programme under Horizon Europe. Its €2.4 billion annual budget accounts for 15% of its €16 billion total 2021-2027 allocated funds. It represents a €0.5 billion increase compared to its 2021 budget and a €0.2 billion rise from its 2020 budget under Horizon 2020. Its overall HE budget is €3.5 billion higher than its H2020 budget, but its share has decreased as the programme’s overall budget has risen (18% for H2020, 17% of HE).
Besides ERC’s usual Starting, Consolidator and Advanced Grants, the work programme will be bringing back the Synergy and Proof of Concept Grants which are not featured amongst its 2021 calls. The two latter calls will allow for intensified interdisciplinary research and expanded international cooperation. Both Synergy and Proof of Concept calls will open on 15 July 2021 with respectively €300 million and €25 million budgets. A second Proof of Concept call is to be launched on 16 November 2021 and will be allocating the second half of its total €50 million dedicated fund.
In terms of priorities, ERC’s 2022 work programme will be fostering its biggest annual budget ever to generate the creation of “Some 8,000 jobs for post-doctoral fellow, PhD students and other research staff [from across the EU and associated countries, regardless of their nationality] in ERC grantees’ teams.”
It will put emphasis on pressing societal matters with initiatives such as the enforcement of the Gender Equality Plan requirement, which applicants must have finalised by the time the grant agreement is to be signed and which covers the whole project duration.
Its Public Engagement with Research Award will also strive to deliver on Horizon Europe’s key focus on citizen’s involvement by incentivising the building of projects with a wider audience outreach.
Find out more about the ERC 2022 work programme and its calls calendar here.