European Research Council (ERC) Launches Public Engagement with Research Award

Three €10,000 awards are available for ERC grantees who have demonstrated excellence in public engagement and outreach.

The European Research Council (ERC) runs the Public Engagement with Research Award to provide prizes to ERC grant recipients who have demonstrated excellence in engaging with audiences beyond their field of research.

The prize defines public engagement as the involvement of the public in the design, conduct or dissemination of activities funded by the ERC. Engagement is a two-way process, involving interaction and mutual understanding for mutual benefit.

Awards will be issued in the following three categories:

  • Involve (citizen science): for activities conducted in collaboration or consultation with the public at any stage of the frontier research project, including its design. Citizen science initiatives comprise activities such as public consultations or citizen juries.
  • Inspire (public outreach): for activities putting the spotlight on a research topic, by disseminating its content, promoting discussion, and/or inspiring potential future researchers. Public outreach initiatives can consist of diverse activities, such as art and science projects, educational programmes, exhibitions, and can include diverse audiences and venues such as students, schools, museums or science festivals.
  • Influence (media and policy): for activities that foster consultation and exchange with citizen groups to raise awareness on a topic, to address a societal challenge or to contribute to an issue in the public debate.

The Principal Investigator (PI) may decide which category to submit the proposal to, taking into account the award criteria (strategy, creativity and impact) and in which category they believe their proposal will be most competitive.

All PIs of an ERC frontier research project that is either ongoing or has ended on or after 31 December 2019 are eligible to apply. In case of ongoing ERC frontier research projects, only activities completed by the submission deadline are eligible. Each PI may submit only one application per ERC project.

Three prizes worth €10,000 each are available, one in each of the three categories. The winners will be announced during the EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF) in July 2022.

Applications should be submitted by the 3 February 2022 deadline.

(This report was the subject of a ResearchConnect Newsflash.)