15 March 2017 Happy Birthday European Research Council

Ten years of the ERC contributing to success stories of institutes like ICFO This year, the ERC and ICFO- The Institute of Photonic Sciences, are celebrating birthdays. Ten years ago, the European Commission established the European Research Council (ERC) with the mission to encourage excellence in frontier research across Europe through competitive funding, supporting top researchers across all fields and of any nationality. At the time of the ERC’s founding, ICFO was a young, ambitious research center celebrating its fifth birthday, having just moved out of rented premises in Barcelona and into the first phase of its purpose built facility in Castelldefels. Today, ICFO is celebrating its 15th birthday. Our facilities have grown into a 14,000 m2 state-of –the art complex where over 1000 talented women and men from around the world have come to conduct research at the highest level. ICFO is on the map as a globally recognized center for research excellence, and continues to grow.

It is clear that a center like ICFO owes its success to the people and entities that have believed in and supported the broad fundamental and applied research that we conduct. The ERC has played a crucial role in ICFO’s growth through the 25 ERC grants awarded to researchers at the center to date that have given wings to ambitious high risk- high impact projects.

  • 9 Starting Grants: Grants for young, talented research leaders that allow them to gain independence in Europe and to build their own careers. (2-7 years of experience post PhD)
  • 4 Consolidator Grants: Grants for researchers who have young research teams and are looking to consolidate a successful career in Europe. (7-12 years of experience post PhD)
  • 5 Advanced Grants: Grants that allow outstanding research leaders with significant demonstrated achievements over the past 10 years to pursue ground-breaking, high-risk projects in Europe.
  • 7 Proof of Concepts Grants: Designed to support ERC grantees with the commercial or societal application of the results of their funded research.

ICFO has been more successful than any other research center of its size in Spain in securing the support of the European Research Council. Through the ERC Grants, the European Union has succeeded in investing in the health, safety, well-being and future of all Europeans.

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