by Peter Kunz
The “ERCIM Alain Bensoussan Fellowship Programme” is now supported by the FP7 Marie Curie Actions - People, Co-funding of Regional, National and International Programmes (COFUND) of the European Commiss ion. This support is for an initial period of four years. With the support from the European Commission, ERCIM plans to co-fund more than 150 fellows in a four year period which started in September 2010. With the “COFUND” action, the Commission recognizes ERCIM’s successful and long-lasting fellowship programme.
The Marie Curie co-funding action is a new way of implementing individual fellowships. It aims to increase the trans-national mobility for training and career development of experienced researchers, in line with the objectives set out in the activity heading “Life-long training and career development” of the “People” Work Programme. The co-funding is expected to result in a considerable increase in the number of ERCIM fellows, with the current average of 20 ERCIM fellowships per year almost doubling. Also, the fellowship’s duration has been extended and applicants can now benefit from one or two periods of twelve months spent in one or two ERCIM member institutes.
Additionally, employment conditions are now more flexible, with the option of signing a working contract instead of a stipend agreement (an agreement for a research training programme) in some of our institutions. The type of contract as well as the monthly allowance (for stipends) or salary (for working contracts) depend on the host institution. Another novelty is the yearly “ABCDE seminar” where fellows will have the opportunity to benefit from specific training on a range of non-scientific skills. The first seminar is planned in June 2011 and could cover topics such as personal development courses, IPR issues, communication, presentation and mentoring techniques and career development.
Emma Liere, ERCIM Fellowship coordinator, ERCIM office