January 30, 2023


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Notifies the ERC of changes in applications and evaluations

Research evaluation

The European Research Council states that project applications should be weighed more than CVs when assessing applications for research funding.

The European Research Council (ERC) announces changes to the evaluation processes for the allocation of research funds. The changes were decided during a meeting of the Scientific Council of the Egyptian Red Crescent Authority this week.

Admittedly, it does not go into effect immediately, as the details will only be written into the work program for the ERC in 2024.

So what happens?

– There is no doubt about the main changes, the basic method of evaluation has been preserved with expert committees and the criteria should be at the bottom, says Eystein Jansen, professor at the University of Bergen and member of the Scientific Council, starting from the new year as vice president.

You should be able to enter what you confirm

But some changes will be faced by those who will apply for the funding. Application templates are changing today. Researchers must be able to enter narrative descriptions to explain the information they provide, it’s called.

Jansen points out that they have a profile of what an applicant should look like for various ERC grants. It is now taken away.

“We make it easy to enter your contributions, and the ones you want to emphasize yourself,” says Jansen.

Still, “scientific excellence” should be the basis, but those evaluating must also look at things other than the classical criteria. According to the UiB professor, one should give the applicant the opportunity to provide context about their career.

Applicants who have had unusual career paths, or who have been doing other things for periods of time, are given the opportunity to describe this. We’re not necessarily looking for you to make long lists of everything you’ve done, but if there are special things you excel at, or are unusual, we’d love to hear about it on the app, says Jansen.

The project should have priority

This is just one of the changes. In addition, they warn that more emphasis should be placed on the project application itself than on past achievements, when the qualifications of applicants are assessed.

– It remains to design exactly how the weighting should be, but in the evaluation the idea and the project must have a certain priority, says Jansen before adding that apparently they must also evaluate the ability of the applicants to implement the project.

– Until now, formally there was some kind of equality between the two, but in reality it was somewhat different. Now we can say that the greatest focus should be on the implementation of the project, so that it is clear to the person who evaluates how it should be.

Signing the European Convention

The ERC is not alone in discussing changes to the evaluation system. Such as Books about Khrono Previously, some time ago, a European agreement was published to reform how research and researchers are evaluated, with implications for, among other things, the recruitment and distribution of research funds.

Among those who signed the agreement – Agreeing to reform the research evaluation – We find, among others, 13 Norwegian bodies, including the Research Council of Norway, as well as many universities and colleges.

It was also decided during the Scientific Council meeting that the Equity and Reconciliation Commission would sign the declaration. Jansen makes it clear Not It means that ERC joins Coara, an alliance created to follow through on advertising.

The declaration states that less emphasis should be placed on bibliometric indicators such as the number of publications and citations. Quantity should be less, quality should count more.

What is the practical importance of it to the Equity and Reconciliation Commission?

– We believe we’ve already done what this agreement says, and the work we’ve done is in line with it, so it’s perfectly fine for the ERC to sign on to it, says Jansen and adds that the ERC’s mandate is superior research action as the only criterion.

– It’s another matter if you have to evaluate job applicants at a university, which you have to emphasize. We have a simpler task in this context. After all, the ERC is also independent and governed by the Scientific Council, so it is not recognized that you can join another organization that will set the guidelines. With this said, we agree with the principles, says Jansen.

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