Two prominent Greek scientists abroad will be funded by the European Research Council

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Two prominent Greek scientists abroad is among a total of 209 from across Europe selected by the European Research Council (ERC) to fund their research through Advanced Grants.

This is the Professor of Paleoanthropology, Katerina Harvati, of the German University of Tübingen and Professor of Retroviology, George Cassiotis, of Imperial College London and head of the Retrovirus Immunology Laboratory at the Francis Creek Institute in London, according to the APE-MPE.

Ms. Harvati will implement the FIRSTSTEPS program, which concerns the spread of Homo sapiens, its adaptability and its interactions in the region of South-Eastern Europe, including Greece. Mr. Cassiotis will implement the RETROFIT project in the field of biomedicine.

At 2.4 million euros the funding to each

The 209 winners of the highly competitive “Advanced Grants” competition will be funded with a total of 507 million euros (on average with about 2.4 million euros each). The new research projects are expected to create approximately 1,900 positions for postdoctoral and doctoral researchers, as well as other staff. Most of these research projects will be implemented in the UK (51), Germany (40), France (22) and the Netherlands (17).

According to EU Innovation and Research Commissioner Maria Gabriel, “the award of more than 200 Advanced Research Grants to key scientific areas will help boost the capacity for scientific research and innovation for the benefit of all EU citizens”.

ERC President Professor Jean-Pierre Bourguignon said: “This is the latest grant under Horizon 2020, which will allow more than 200 scientists to follow their scientific instincts and dreams. “The large increase in demand led to a very tough competition, in which only 8% of the candidates succeeded.”

A total of 2,678 proposals were submitted by researchers, 22% of women, who eventually received 23% of the grants. Since the beginning of Horizon 2020, the share of women in Advanced Research Grants has been steadily increasing, from around 10% in 2014 to over 22% in 2020.

Proposals for the next round of funding “Advanced Grants” must be submitted from May 20 to August 31, 2021. They concern mature researchers at an advanced stage of their careers, already at the forefront of their field.

* File photo

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