This EU Science Quarterly for University of Southern Denmark 3rd Quarter 2014 contains the essential updates and information on EU research, innovation and education funding. If you have any questions about this, or other matters regarding EU funding, you are of course welcome to contact us directly at the South Denmark European Office

2014 call for ERC Advanced Grants is now open

Applicants for the 2014 Advanced Grants are now able to register their proposal and download the application documents on the Research Participant Portal.

The ERC Advanced funding has an overall call budget of €450 million. It targets already established research leaders with a recognised track record of research achievements during the last 10 years. The Advanced Grants allow research leaders to pursue high-risk, ground-breaking projects with the aim of opening new directions in their respective areas.

The deadline for application is 21 October 2014, and applies to all three research areas: Physical Sciences and Engineering; Life Sciences; and Social Sciences and Humanities.

Find more information about the ERC Advanced Grants call here

Launch of the world's largest civilian programme in robotics

The world’s largest civilian Research and Innovation robotics programme, SPARC, has been launched by the European Commission and 180 research organisations and companies.

SPARC is a contractual Public-Private Partnership of the European Commission and the European Robotics Community, euRobotics AISBL. The programme is run under Horizon 2020 and aims at strategic positioning of European robotics in the world, ensuring its benefits for European society and economy in general.

With €700 million in funding from the Commission for 2014-2020, and triple the amount from European industry, SPARC is expected to increase Europe’s share of the world market to 42 % and create over 240,000 European jobs.

Find out more about the programme here.

Research Agenda for JPI More Years, Better Lives

As part of the Joint Programming Initiative (JPI) “More Years, Better Lives”, 14 European countries and Canada have adopted a Strategic Research Agenda.

The main focus of the work of the JPI is ageing, but the research agenda also deals with issues of demographic change and problems in health and social care.

The aim of the 
initiative is to create a more fruitful and synergetic coordination of EU and national programmes in the area of demographic change. Through the JPI, members are able to closely coordinate their research on specific societal challenges.

Read more here or contact the Danish representatives in the JPI here.


Commissioner for Research takes stock of innovation
Four years after the launch of The Innovation Union, Commissioner for Research, Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, takes stock of EU’s progress in the area of innovation.

The Commission report "State of the Innovation Union" concludes that EU has taken an important step forward by prioritising investment in research and innovation. The report highlights the launch of partnerships for innovation and research under Horizon 2020, and emphasises the unitary patent and other initiatives that are expected to ease the European industry’s access to finance.   

Together with the report, the Commission published a number of proposed innovation reforms to ensure investments in innovation and research. The Commission stresses three important reform areas:
  • Improving the quality of strategy development and the policy making process, and operating on the basis of a stable multi-annual strategic framework.
  • Reducing administrative burdens and allocating funding on a competitive basis to improve the quality of research and innovation programmes.
  • Optimising the quality of public institutions performing research and innovation through partnerships with the private sector.
Research and innovation are central to the Europe 2020 strategy, and the EU’s financial framework for 2014-2020 ensures a greater focus on these areas. The financial framework includes Horizon 2020 with a budget of nearly €80 billion and €86 billion from the EU Structural Funds for research, innovation and SMEs support.  

Four new Horizon 2020 advisory groups and a new group of experts established

The European Commission has established four new advisory groups for: The advisory groups are to give expert advice to the Commission services within the aforementioned areas in relation to the Horizon 2020 work programme. This includes preparation, evaluation or implementation of programmes.

In addition, a group of experts on Cultural Heritage has been established. The group is going to assist the Commission by providing advice and recommendation to help define a Research & Innovation framework as well as an agenda for Cultural Heritage.  
Research and innovation under Italian Presidency 

On 1 July 2014, Italy took over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. The main focus of the Presidency is the mid-term review of the Europe 2020 Strategy.

In regard to priorities in the area of research and innovation, the Presidency has organised several Competitiveness Council (COMPET) meetings. An informal COMPET meeting with focus on Research Infrastructures has already taken place on 22 July 2014. The Presidency plans two additional COMPET meetings on 26 September 2014 and 5 December 2014.

In addition, Presidency papers on the European Research Area (ERA) and cooperation in the Mediterranean are scheduled for August, while a second ERA report will be published in October by the European Commission. The Presidency also foresees a series of conferences on research and innovation.

Read more about the programme of the Italian Presidency here.



Decrease in applications for ERC Consolidator Grants

The 2014 Consolidator Grants call closed on May 20 and the application numbers have now been published.

With a total of 2525 applications submitted, the demand for ERC Consolidator Grants has decreased by 31 % compared to the 3679 applications submitted in the previous 2013 call.

As a cause of the decrease ERC President Prof. Jean-Pierre Bourguignon, points to the new and more restrictive resubmission rules for ERC calls.

The new, stricter rules were introduced for candidates in the 2014 ERC calls, due to the past consistent increase in demand for ERC funding.

The fact that the demand has now dropped to the level of previous years will most likely result in a higher, more encouraging success rate (from 8,5 % in 2013 to approx. 15 % in 2014). The final results will be published in the first quarter of 2015.

The application numbers per research area are as follows:
  • Physical Sciences and Engineering: 1201
  • Life Sciences: 797
  • Social Sciences and Humanities: 527
The 2015 Consolidator Grants call is expected to open in November 2014 with an application deadline in March 2015.

For further information, see the ERC press release.



European Research Forum - Discoveries and Innovations for Healthy Ageing, September 2014

Growing the Silver Economy in Europe, September 2014

Leading Enabling Technologies for Societal Challenges, September-October 2014

IMI 2 Open Info Day 2014, September 2014

Open Days - European Week of Regions and Cities, October 2014

EurOcean 2014 Italian EU Presidency Conference, October 2014

ICT Proposers' Day, October 2014

Public-Private Partnerships Information Day, October 2014

The 10th SETAC Europe Special Science Symposium, October 2014 

EARTO Policy Event & 2014 EARTO Innovation Prize Ceremony, October 2014

The 2nd Scientix Conference, October 2014

European Conference on Standards: Your Innovation Bridge, October 2014

ERRIN Brokerage Events Week, November 2014

BMRI-ERIC Seminar, November 2014

The EU Energy Challenge: Can Innovation fill the gap?, November 2014

Broadening the benefit of R&I Programmes, November 2014

Bio-Based Plastics - How do we Grow the EU Industry?, December 2014

The 9th EuBP Conference, December 2014

International Innovation Live: Space, December 2014


The European Commission has published a report on the state of the Innovation Union and a communication on proposed innovation reforms.

Public consultation on Science 2.0 has been launched by the Commission to evaluate the trend towards a new modus operandi of doing research and organising science.

The Commission has launched a public consultation on the Europe 2020 strategy to draw lessons from the first four years of the strategy.

A guide on how to enable synergies between European Structural and Investment Funds, Horizon 2020 and other Union Programmes, has been published by the Commission.

The programme of the Italian Presidency "Europe, a Fresh Start" was published 2 July 2014. 


SDU Research Support Offices 

South Denmark European Office

Participant Portal  (call, work programmes, submission, become an evaluator etc.)

EURAXESS (EU's job database for researchers)

EUopSTART (Horizon 2020 pre-fund)

EU Science Quarterly (sign up here)
All questions about the newsletter can be directed to Christian Walther Bruun at South Denmark European Office (+ 32 4 777 77 587 or