Searching for funding opportunities for Young Researchers in Horizon 2020, one comes across the
desert high level landscape that is left for us. It’s not a desert, but it’s pushy. There is Marie Curie Actions (MCA) and ERC Grants. That’s it.
It’s sad to say goodbye to FET Young Researchers, an unique opportunity for coordinating projects at ‘post-doc’ level. In countries without robust national funding schemes, as southern Spain and Portugal, it would be the sole opportunity to gain experience in coordinating projects, which is now an important evaluation criteria for getting projects and fellowships anywhere.
More sad is the end of MCA Career Integration Grants (CIGs). Marie Curie premise is ‘mobility’, and despite the public demonstrations of concern on “brain drain”, we are left without the “antidote” grant for the mobility in MCA, which were the CIGs.
But the past is the past, although the mobility re-integration schemes issue is a major problem to be addressed, really!, and we must focus in the present and future. Career development is clearly requiring a very realistic evaluation of own possibilities, searching for funding well in advance to chart and fulfill the requirements to ask for a MCA Individual Fellowship or a ERC Starting Grant.
Look for it! I particularly enjoyed Andreas Zeller blog entry on ERC tips!