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European Research Council is slightly re-arranging its peer-review system by adding two panels in order to transition the funding schemes from the current Horizon2020 programme to the upcoming Horizon Europe. Currently, ERC has evaluation panels in three broad scientific fields. Nine panels cover the life sciences, six cover social sciences and humanities, while there are 10 physical sciences and engineering panels. It is planned to add an eleventh physical sciences panel on materials engineering and a seventh social sciences panel on human mobility, environment and space. This will cover research on demography, population health, sustainability science, territorial planning and spatial analysis.
The scientific council has also decided to introduce face-to-face interviews in the evaluation process of ERC Advanced Grants. Interviews are already used for Starting and Consolidator Grants. All mono-beneficiary ERC calls (Starting, Consolidator, Advanced Grants, PoC) are expected to be launched in 2021 and 2022, but their opening and closing dates will be shifted so that the first calls will be launched only in January 2021. The Scientific Council expects the call schedule to be back to the normal schedule by mid-2022.