These support established research leaders in conducting innovative research projects. Applications may be made in any field of research with an emphasis on the frontiers of science, scholarship and engineering.

Applicants may be researchers of any age or nationality, and may reside in any country at the time of the application. They must be active researchers with a track record of significant research achievements in the last ten years. They must spend a minimum of 50 per cent of working time in an EU member state or associated country and a minimum of 30 per cent of their working time on the ERC project. They must be engaged at the host institution for the duration of the project. Host institutions must be established in EU members states or associated countries as a legal entity under national law, or may be an international European research organisation, the European Commission's joint research centre, or any other entity under EU law, including public and private entities, universities, research organisations and similar undertakings.

The budget is €626 million to fund approximately 250 grants. Each grant is worth up to €2.5m over five years and an additional €1m may be requested for eligible start-up costs of moving to the EU or an associated country, the purchase of major equipment, access to large facilities and other major experimental and fieldwork costs.

For more information visit the European Research Council website.