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What’s going on in Europe: 23 February to 7 March

Image: Grace Gay for Research Professional News

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ERC evaluation

The European Research Council has explained changes to its project evaluation strategy brought in this year, including why it no longer bills itself as a “high-risk, high-gain” funder. In a report, ERC president Maria Leptin said the phrase “was seen as potentially confusing and problematic”. It was intended to discourage evaluation panels from being conservative, she explained, adding that the funder is not backing away from the risk that a project will produce unpredictable results. But she said the ERC wanted to clarify that it welcomes proposals based on preliminary data indicating that groundbreaking work has a relatively high chance of success. “The terms ‘ambitious’, ‘creative’ and ‘original’ are better descriptors for the kinds of proposals the ERC should fund,” Leptin said.

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