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Course: The Succesful ERC Applicant

Learn how to write a successful European Research Council (ERC) application. Boost your chances of being awarded a grant from the ERC by mastering the format and the concepts of the ERC proposal. The course will take place 5 November 2019 in Copenhagen.

Time and place

Nov 05, 2019
from 09:00 to 04:00
Eigtveds Pakhus, Asiatisk Plads 2G, 1448 Copenhagen, meeting room II


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A course for…

excellent researchers at different stages in their carrier applying for an ERC grant in 2020. The course targets the following ERC grant schemes: Starting Grant, Consolidator Grant, and Advanced Grant. As the course is based on key ERC concepts, the course can also benefit researchers applying for an ERC Synergy Grant. The course is relevant for ERC-calls with deadlines in 2020.

Please note that the course is for researchers or advisors, who are employed at an organisation in Denmark or for researchers, who wish to apply for an ERC grant in order to live in Denmark.

Course content

The ERC proposal differs from the ordinary Horizon 2020 proposal by solely focusing on the excellence of the research idea and the profile of the principal investigator, including his/her CV and track record. For Starting Grant and Consolidator Grant the evaluation process also includes a personal interview with the applicant.

The course will focus on:

  • the ERC proposal requirements in relation to project idea and research profile of the principal investigator
  • the scientific parts of the ERC application (B1 and B2) and how best to get started on them
  • the evaluation criteria
  • the experiences of ERC evaluators and successful ERC applicants.


8:30 Breakfast and registration
9:00 Welcome – Presentation of Programme and Participants
/Anne Overgaard Jørgensen, EuroCenter, Danish Agency for Science and Education

Introduction to ERC
/Anne Overgaard Jørgensen, EuroCenter, Danish Agency for Science and Higher Education

Principal Investigator
/Jonas Toft Ludvigsen, EuroCenter, Danish Agency for Science and Higher Education
11:30 Lunch
12:15 Extended Synopsis and Proposal Summary
/Kim Kryger, EuroCenter, Danish Agency for Science and Higher Education
An ERC Evaluator's Experiences
/Professor John Renner Hansen, University of Copenhagen
Interview Phase
/Kim Kryger, EuroCenter, Danish Agency for Science and Higher Education
The Experiences of an ERC Starting Grantee
/Research Coordinator and Senior Researcher Mona Kanwal Sheikh, Danish Institute for International Studies
Concluding Remarks
16:00 End of day


The course will concentrate on ERC proposal writing and provide you with advice, tools, and inspiration for your own ERC grant proposal. Based on their experience the trainers will address the challenges and the common mistakes in the proposal writing phase. Drawing upon the experiences of evaluators and successful applicants (who will also present at the course), you will be offered insights into the evaluation criteria and the factors that determine the fate of an ERC application.

At the course we will read two successful ERC proposals to see what works when writing an ERC application, by the end of the day we will get a chance to meet one of the researchers behind one of the ERC application we have been reading at the course.

The course will give you a clear understanding of:

  • how the concepts ”ground-breaking research”, “high risk/high gain”, and “scientific impact” are to be understood in the context of the ERC. This will enable you to address them in the right way in your own proposal.
  • the different parts of the ERC proposal (B1 and B2), what to focus on, and how to prioritise the time spent on the proposal writing
  • the formal ERC evaluation criteria and the informal expectations of the evaluators. This will sharpen your ability to meet the eligibility criteria
  • the informal requirements that can make your proposal stand out.

Pre- or Post-Award

Pre-Award. The course is relevant in the ERC proposal writing phase and focus will be on the scientific section (B1 and B2) of the ERC application. The course is relevant for ERC-calls with deadlines in 2020.

The course will not focus on the budget and the administrative parts of the ERC Application.


One day course

Teaching method

The course will combine presentations, reading of successful ERC applications, film and interactive exercises. Furthermore, one ERC evaluator and one successful ERC applicant will present their insights and answer questions.


Maximum 25 participants



Course fee

3.000 DKK + VAT. We will send an invoice after the course.

Course material

Digital course material will be sent to participants before the course. The material will be used during the course and can be used as a reference document after the course. Moreover, a link to an ERC webinar introducing the ERC programme will be send out to participants before the course.


Eigtveds Pakhus 
Asiatisk Plads 2 G 
1448 Copenhagen
Meeting room II


Deadline for cancellation is 14 days before the course. After this date registration is binding and the registration fee will be collected regardless. However, you are always welcome to send a substitute in your place, if you are unable to attend. Cancellations can be sent to:

last modified Oct 09, 2019