The search committee for the European Research Council’s (ERC) next President is to include some of the continent's most distinguished scientists.
The panel, chaired by former Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti, will include Imperial’s President Alice Gast, CERN Director-General Fabiola Gianotti, Chair of the Nobel Foundation Carl-Henrik Heldin, Nobel laureate Jules Hoffmann, President of the Foundation for Polish Science Maciej Zylicz, and former ERC President Helga Nowotny.
The committee, appointed by European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation Carlos Moedas, are seeking a successor to the current President Jean-Pierre Bourguignon. Both Commissioner Moedas and Professor Bourguignon have visited Imperial in recent years, to meet researchers, celebrate a decade of successful ERC-Imperial collaboration, and to show their support for future ties.
'Powerhouse of science'
The news comes as government and academic leaders in the UK and Europe have underlined their support for continued UK access to research programmes such as Horizon Europe. President Gast is a leading advocate for continued collaboration and free movement of talent between the UK and EU after Brexit.
Commissioner Carlos Moedas said: “The ERC has become a powerhouse of science, and will be a key pillar in an even more ambitious research and innovation framework programme that will follow Horizon 2020. I am confident that Mr Monti and his distinguished group of people from European science and research can help us find the right person to lead the ERC to even greater success.”
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