Every prospective or current Principal Investigator in the framework of a prestigious ERC action knows that they are, or will be, required to comply with minimum percentages of their working time in the implementation of the ERC action, and working in an EU Member Stae or Associated Country.
These percentages vary according to the type of action (Starting, Consolidator, Advanced, Synergy), decreasing inversely to the seniority of the PI, from 50% for Starting grants to 30% for Advanced, assuming that the PI of an ” advanced” holds positions, and has a workload even outside ERC, which does not reasonably allow him to devote more than 30% of his time to the European grant.
In H2020, the calculation of this percentage was rather immediate and depended on the number of Annual Productive Hours (APH) opted by the Hosting Institution for the annual calculation of the hourly personnel cost.
In Horizon Europe we have a significant difference, i.e. the HI (like any other beneficiary of direct European funds, not just Horizon) can no longer adopt one of the three options 1) 1.720, 2) Individual, or Standard.
The simplification process wanted by the European Commission (and strongly promoted by the European Court of Auditors, ed), which goes under the name of Corporate Approach, has defined a fixed number of annual productive days. Therefore, no longer “hours” but “days”, and no longer a choice, but a fixed number: 215 days in a year. 215 days in a year are the translation of 1720 hours, considering an 8-hour day.
How does this translate in terms of the Time Commitment of the PI of an ERC grant?
The beneficiaries must respect the following conditions for the principal investigator and their team:
…the obligation of the principal investigator to meet the time commitments for implementing the action and for working in an EU Member State or Horizon Europe associated country, as set out in Annex 1
It is therefore strongly recommended to take into account the above-described provisions when planning your next ERC grant when it comes to the PI commitment.
If you need assistance with the administrative and financial management of your grant, or in the preparation of your proposal, send us an email at info(at)liviantoniconsulting.eu, or use this online form.