New opportunities unfold for Singaporean scientists to join ERC team in Europe

New initiative between EU & Singapore set to inspire more scientific collaboration
New initiative between EU & Singapore set to inspire more scientific collaboration

A new EU-Singapore initiative officially called an Implementing Arrangement, has been taken that will encourage the Singaporean talent to join research teams funded by the European Research Council (ERC).

The initiative was signed by the European Commission's Director-General for Research and Innovation, Jean-Eric Paquet, and the CEO of the National Research Foundation Singapore (NRF). Professor Low Teck Seng.

During the signing ceremony of this agreement, which is the 14th international agreement of its kind, ERC President Professor Jean-Pierre Bourguignon and Singapore's Permanent Secretary for National Research and Development and Chairman of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research, Chan Lai Fung were also present on Sunday, October 6 on the sidelines of the Science and Technology in Society Forum in Kyoto, Japan.

Dr Subra Suresh, President of Singapore's Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and Prof. Tan Eng Chye, President of the National University of Singapore were also present at the signing ceremony.

It should be mentioned that this new initiative was taken to encourage talented researchers supported by the NRF to make research visits to Europe. The top talent will also get an opportunity to temporarily work in ERC-funded teams.

Prof. Low Teck Seng said that NRF welcomes the new scheme and believe that this new initiative will "facilitate the exchange of ideas and research experiences among top research talent and benefit research efforts of both Singapore and the EU."

ERC President Jean-Pierre Bourguignon mentioned that since 2007, ERC has launched several agreements of this kind with funders around the globe that are R&I leaders.

"I am very pleased to see this new scheme to encourage Singapore-based researchers to join ERC teams. It both reflects the quality of research talent based in Singapore and confirms the ERC's and Europe's openness to the world and attractiveness to top scientists," he added.

ERC, set up by the European Union has funded over 9,000 top researchers at various stages of their careers. The schemes include four core grants, which are Starting, Consolidator, Advanced and Synergy Grants. From this year, ERC Synergy Grants are also open to candidates based in host institutions outside Europe.

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