How Horizon 2020 can benefit Universities and Research Institutions
Research Universities based in Turkey can directly benefit from Horizon 2020 mainly in the following four possibilities:
- As hosting organisations for high-calibre researchers to conduct high-risk, high-gain breakthrough research under ERC grants
- As hosting or sending organisations for facilitating researchers to acquire skills and conduct their research under MSCA grants
- As coordinators in WIDENING projects for increasing their research capacity by collaborating with high research performers in other countries
- As partners or coordinators in Horizon 2020 collaborative projects
- As subcontractors or third parties for providing specific services to actors that are involved in Horizon 2020 projects
Most of the above are supported also from the figures below that show where the majority of Research centers and Universities are active in Horizon 2020 in Turkey (Figure 1) and in Europe (Figure 2) overall.
Figure 1: H2020 thematics that Research Centers and Universities from Turkey are active (Source: EC dashboard Oct 2019)
Figure 2: Thematics that Research Centers and Universities from all over Europe are active (EC dashboard Oct 2019)
Next, we elaborate further each of the four possibilities.
1. ERC Grants
As hosting organisations for high-calibre researchers to conduct high-risk, high-gain breakthrough research under ERC grant.
Are you a researcher with an excellent scientific profile and with visionary research projects in mind that you want to realise in Europe? The European Research Council (ERC) has a funding scheme that will meet your needs.
The European Research Council supports frontier research, cross disciplinary proposals and pioneering ideas in new and emerging fields which introduce unconventional and innovative approaches. The ERC's mission is to encourage the highest quality research in Europe through competitive funding and to support investigator-driven frontier research across all fields of research, on the basis of scientific excellence. A total budget of 13 095 million euro is available for the implementation of the ERC funding schemes under Horizon 2020.
What are the main ERC principles?
- 1 researcher; 1 host institution; 1 project; 1 selection criterion: scientific excellence
- No consortia, no networks, no co-financing
- Applications can be made in any field of research, including social sciences and humanities
- Independent researchers from anywhere in the world, of any age and career stage can apply
- Host institutions must provide conditions for the researcher to direct the research and manage its funding
- The grant is 'portable' to another host institution, if the grantholder wishes so
- Research must be carried out in one of the EU member states or associated countries
What type of grants does the ERC fund?
- ERC Starting Grant for young, early-career top researchers (2-7 years after PhD) - up to 1.5 million euro for 5 years.
- ERC Consolidator Grant for already independent excellent researchers 7-12 years after PhD) -up to 2 million euro for 5 years.
- ERC Advanced Grant for senior research leaders with significant research achievements in the last 10 years - up to 2.5 million euro for 5 years.
- ERC Proof of Concept Grants for ERC grant holders who want to check the market and/or innovation potential of research results from ERC-projects - lump sum of 150,000 euro for 18 months.
- ERC Synergy Grants to address ambitious research questions that can only be answered by the coordinated work of a small group of 2-4 principal investigators - up to 10 million euro for 6 years.
Further Support and training material
If you still have further energy and curiosity, you can check the following sites
- Check out the tips and tricks in this step-by-step video guide to the application process.
- Check our trainings FGT-ERC and PWC-ERC especially targeting researchers and research support staff that are interested in applying for ERC grants. These trainings have been organised under the programme "Turkey in Horizon 2020 phase II"
- Check TUBITAK website on ERC
- Check the European Research Council website
2. MSCA grants
As hosting or sending organisations for facilitating researchers to acquire skills and conduct their research under MSCA grant
MSCA (Marie Sklodowska Curie Action) enables research-focused organisations (universities, research centres, and companies) to host talented foreign researchers and to create strategic partnerships with leading institutions worldwide. Further information on MSCA, you can find from TUBITAK at https://h2020.org.tr/tr/h2020/marie-curie
The Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions (MSCA) provide grants for all stages of researchers' careers - be they doctoral candidates or highly experienced researchers - and encourage transnational, intersectoral and interdisciplinary mobility. The MSCA enable research-focused organisations (universities, research centres, and companies) to host talented foreign researchers and to create strategic partnerships with leading institutions worldwide.
The MSCA aim to equip researchers with the necessary skills and international experience for a successful career, either in the public or the private sector. The programme responds to the challenges sometimes faced by researchers, offering them attractive working conditions and the opportunity to move between academic and other settings.
The MSCA are open to all domains of research and innovation, from fundamental research to market take-up and innovation services. Research and innovation fields are chosen freely by the applicants (individuals and/or organisations) in a fully 'bottom-up' manner.
Types of MSCA
Research networks (ITN): support for Innovative Training Networks
ITNs support competitively selected joint research training and/or doctoral programmes, implemented by European partnerships of universities, research institutions, and non-academic organisations.
The research training programmes provide experience outside academia, hence developing innovation and employability skills. ITNs include industrial doctorates, in which non-academic organisations have an equal role to universities in respect of the researcher's time and supervision, and joint doctoral degrees delivered by several universities. Furthermore, non-European organisations can participate as additional partners in ITNs, enabling doctoral-level candidates to gain experience outside Europe during their training.
Individual fellowships (IF): support for experienced researchers undertaking mobility between countries, optionally to the non-academic sector
Individual Fellowships support the mobility of researchers within and beyond Europe - as well as helping to attract the best foreign researchers to work in the EU. The grant usually covers two years' salary, a mobility allowance, research costs and overheads for the host institution. Individual researchers submit proposals for funding in liaison with their planned host organisation. Proposals are judged on their research quality, the researcher's future career prospects, and the support offered by the host organisation. Fellows can also spend part of the fellowship elsewhere in Europe if this would boost impact, and those restarting their career in Europe benefit from special eligibility conditions.
International and inter-sectoral cooperation through the Research and Innovation Staff Exchanges (RISE)
RISE supports short-term mobility of research and innovation staff at all career levels, from the most junior (post-graduate) to the most senior (management), including also administrative and technical staff. It is open to partnerships of universities, research institutions, and non-academic organisations both within and beyond Europe. In worldwide partnerships, academia-to-academia exchanges are permitted.
Co-funding of regional, national and international programmes that finance fellowships involving mobility to or from another country
The MSCA offer additional funding to regional, national and international programmes for research training and career development. COFUND programmes encourage the movement of researchers across borders and provide good working conditions. The scheme can support doctoral and fellowship programmes.
The European Researchers' Night (NIGHT)
It is a Europe-wide public event to stimulate interest in research careers, especially among young people. The activities are focused on the general public and might take various forms such as hands-on experiments, science shows, debates, competitions or quizzes. The NIGHT takes place yearly, typically on the last Friday of the month of September.
Training material for MSCA from Turkey in Horizon 2020
Turkey in Horizon 2020 phase I has organised two trainings on MSCA one in 2017 and one in 2016. Their material is up to date and quite relevant for any applicant.
As coordinators in WIDENING projects for increasing their research capacity by collaborating with high research performers in other countries
What are the core Widening actions?
Widening consists of three main actions, i.e. Teaming, Twinning and ERA Chairs, for which specific eligibility conditions apply. This ensures a targeted approach towards Widening Member States and Associated Countries. The Member States currently eligible for Widening support are: Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia.
The Associated Countries currently eligible for Widening support are (subject to valid association agreements of third countries with Horizon 2020): Albania, Armenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Faroe Islands, The Republic of North Macedonia, Georgia, Moldova, Montenegro, Serbia, Tunisia, Turkey and Ukraine.
Other widening actions
The European Cooperation in Science & Technology (COST) provides cross-border scientific networking. COST helps excellent researchers and innovators get access to European and international networks.
Training material from the programme Turkey in Horizon 2020
"Turkey in Horizon 2020" programme has organised two training events with very good training material that you can download accordingly for the TWINNING and TEAMING actions.
H2020 Collaborative Projects
As partners or coordinators in Horizon 2020 collaborative projects
According to the EC Horizon 2020 dashboard data for October 2019, as we have seen in Figure 1 and especially figure 2 a large number of Research Centers as well as Universities are already participating either as partners or coordinators in winning Horizon 2020 projects from all over Europe and also from Turkey.
From the figures above, we can see that Research Centers and Universities are involved in the main following areas:
- LEIT - ICT with H2020 collaborative projects in electronics, microsystems, networking, the ability to master increasingly complex cyber-physical systems and robots, and progress in data processing and human machine interfaces.
- ENERGY with H2020 collaborative projects to support the transition to a reliable, sustainable and competitive energy system. Under "Turkey in Horizon 2020 II" programme, we have organised a specialised training on ENERGY calls and how to get involved as partner, how to develop a winning proposal as coordinator, what to pay attention on each call, etc and you can access the training material from our specific helpdesk page
- TPT with H2020 collaborative projects to boost the competitiveness of the European transport industries and achieve a European transport system that is resource-efficient, climate-and-environmentally-friendly, safe and seamless for the benefit of all citizens, the economy and society.
- Society with H2020 collaborative projects to address the societal engagement in research and innovation from many perspectives, such as encouraging dialogue between scientists and other members of the public, by promoting an adherence to ethical standards, and by developing better ways for the results of research to be accessed by all.
- FET with H2020 collaborative projects that aim to support top-class innovators, start-ups, small companies and researchers with bright ideas that are radically different from existing products, services or business models, are highly risky and have the potential to scale up internationally.
- INFRA with H2020 collaboragive projects that develop world-class research infrastructures that are accessible to all researchers in Europe and fully exploiting their potential for scientific advancement and innovation.
- LEIT-SPACE with H2020 collaborative projects to foster a cost-effective competitive and innovative space industry (including SMEs) and research community to develop and exploit space infrastructure to meet future Union policy and societal needs.
- FOOD with H2020 collaborative projects towards optimal and renewable use of biological resources and towards sustainable primary production and processing systems. These systems will need to produce more food, fibre and other bio-based products with minimised inputs, environmental impact and greenhouse gas emissions, and with enhanced ecosystem services, zero waste and adequate societal value.
- ENV with H2020 collaborative projects that aim to achieve a resource, water efficient and climate change resilient economy and society
- HEALTH with H2020 collaborative projects that support better health for all
- LEIT-ADVMANU, LEIT-NMP, LEIT, ADVMAT with H2020 collaborative projects in the areas of Advanced Materials, Nanotechnologies & Biotechnology and Advanced Materials.
- Security with H2020 collaborative projects that aim at understanding, detecting, preventing, deterring, preparing and protecting against security threats. Under "Turkey in Horizon 2020 II" programme, we have organised a specialised training on security calls and how to get involved as partner, how to develop a winning proposal as coordinator, what to pay attention on each call, etc and you can access the training material from our specific helpdesk page
In the programme "Turkey in Horizon 2020 phase II", we offer the following services in order to support Research Centers and Universities from Turkey to get involved in Horizon 2020 collaborative projects
- How to identify the most promising call opportunity for your proposal idea in Horizon 2020 that was part of the IMS-1 training
- How to join consortia as a partner in general in the context of the IMS-1 training or in specific Security, Energy calls and soon in ICT calls.
- How to develop winning projects with a step-by-step approach in specific Security, Energy calls and soon in ICT calls.
- How to become a valuable partner by writing an impressive Impact section in grant applications for H2020 collaborative projects in the context of the IMS-2 training
There will be other trainings also to be organised and you should check our events page for past and upcoming trainings at https://turkeyinh2020.eu/event-list/. In any case, you can check the links above for accessing the proper training material so far. In general, the training material for most of our trainings can be found from our helpdesk.
Furthermore, you can visit the TUBITAK website specifically about Horizon 2020 for more info.
Subcontractors or Third Parties
As subcontractors or third parties for providing specific services to actors that are involved in Horizon 2020 projects
A lot of Recearce Centers and Universities are involved as subcontractors or third parties in Horizon 2020 projects for offering their expertise. They do not participate as partners, i.e. they don't receive funding from the EC directly but they are getting paid for their services by one of the beneficiaries in Horizon 2020 collaborative projects. In addition to specialised services in specific areas other general services can be :
- Conduction of clinical trials
- Conduction of research or market studies
- Social research
- Specialised lab measurements
- Access to research databases
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