11 December 2012

Prestigious EU grants awarded to three SCIENCE professors

ERC Advanced grant

Three professors from SCIENCE have this year been awarded the highly prestigious ERC Advanced Grant from The European Research Council (ERC). The grants are given to groundbreaking research projects lead by scientists belonging to the high elite within their research fields. The grants are between 1.5 and 2.5 million Euro.

Three very different research projects have been given the honor and acknowledgement of receiving the ERC grant.

Professor in plant biochemistry Birger Lindberg Møller from the Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences is receiving funds for developing plant cells used in sustainable production of everything from cancer medication to foods produced based on oil.

Professor in mathematics Jan Philip Solovej from the Department of Mathematical Sciences, who´s research is on the borderline between mathematics and physics, is using his grant for the analysis and development of mathematical models used in physics to describe matters and their structure. This could be used to discover to what degree these models are able to explain fundamental properties of matters in general.

Finally, Professor Jacobus Boomsma from the Department of Biology is receiving funds to expand his research in the evolution of insect communities with the most modern methods for understanding genomes and their interplay with environments. The project complements his National Research Foundation ’Center for Social Evolution’ which especially aims on the biological adaptation of ants and their symbiosis with fungus and bacteria.

The grants are of great importance to the 3 professors. Aside from it being a great honor to be awarded the ERC Advanced Grant, it also means that they now have the opportunity to expand their ongoing collaborations with some of the best scientists in the world.

SCIENCE in the top of European Research
ERC Advanced Grant is awarded once a year and each year thousands of the best scientists in Europe apply in hopes of receiving the prestigious grants. Around 250 ERC Advanced Grants are awarded every year for top researchers in humanities, social- and natural sciences. The three grants for SCIENCE are therefore of great joy to the Associate Dean for Research Morten Pejrup:

- For SCIENCE to receive three Advanced Grants is a major acknowledgment of the high scientific standards of the faculty. At the same time it is of great encouragement for our efforts to increase the external research funding. The faculty is also always happy to provide help for the applications.

About ERC Advanced Grant
ERC Advanced Grant is targeted experienced researchers all over Europe who wants to strengthen their field of research. The ERC grants can also be a good way to recruit star researchers to the University of Copenhagen. In those cases the applicant does not have to be employed by the university at the application time, but naturally have an agreement with the university of moving in case of an awarded grant.

Applicants can apply for max. € 2,5 mio over a period of 5 years. It is possible, however, to achieve additional € 1 mio. if the applicant has to move to Europe from a non-European country and has to establish an entire new group, or if it is necessary to invest in new research equipment.

Read more about Birger Lindberg's project

Read more about Jan Philip Solovej's project

Read more about Jacobus Boomsma's project