Press Release

ESF to support French University of Bordeaux IdEx research application assessment process

The Strasbourg-based European Science Foundation (ESF) has recently been awarded a contract following a call for tender with the French University of Bordeaux “IdEx – Initiative d’Excellence”, in order to evaluate post-doctoral and Junior Chair applications.

The European Science Foundation (ESF) has supported the University of Bordeaux – IdEx since 2016, through the independent evaluation of research proposals and grants funded by the university. These projects are evaluated following ESF’s recognised peer-review procedures and by mobilising scientists from the ESF “Community of Experts”.

Scientific research is increasingly competitive and the process of assessing proposals for projects is more complex than ever. Research stakeholders need high-quality and independent scientific assessment processes to help them make informed selection decisions. Benefiting from our experience of over four decades of grant selection and management, ESF and its expert services division Science Connect provides a robust platform to support independent scientific project evaluation in the context of competitive calls.

In December 2016 ESF responded to a public call for tender issued by the University of Bordeaux – IdEx and was awarded a contract that is dealing with the assessment of post-doctoral and Junior Chair applications. The same process took place at the end of 2017 and a second contract was awarded to ESF covering the year 2018, whereby ESF will be responsible for the evaluation of some 115 proposals.

The post-doctoral applications are supported by a funding instrument specifically addressed to fellows holding a doctorate degree delivered by a non-French institution and aims at allowing early career scientists to carry out their research projects in one of Bordeaux’s research laboratories. Support is granted to researchers from all disciplines demonstrating excellence in terms of their profile and their project. Candidates promoting an original and innovative research project in one of the scientific priorities of IdEx Bordeaux are considered with particular attention.

Junior Chair applications stem from a programme intended to strengthen the academic and scientific community of the University of Bordeaux and other partner institutions in strategic fields by supporting young, high-profile international researchers in setting up research teams to develop their own projects within Bordeaux’s laboratories. Proposals in scientific priorities of IdEx Bordeaux or at the interface between them will be examined with particular attention.

Dr Jean-Claude Worms, ESF Chief Executive, said “We are very happy to have been chosen by one of France’s world-class clusters of excellence in higher education and scientific research to support this assessment process, through our best practices in research evaluation “.

Mr Nicolas Walter, ESF Corporate Science Officer indicated that this agreement awarded by one of the top three centres of excellence in French universities demonstrates the relevance and robustness of ESF-Science Connect processes and the quality of its Community of Experts.

- ENDS –

Note for Editors

The European Science Foundation (ESF) is based in Strasbourg, France, and was established in 1974 as an independent, non-governmental, non-profit organisation to provide a common platform for its Member Organisations to collaborate internationally on research programmes through its networking, funding and coordination activities. The launch of Science Connect, the new expert services division of ESF, marks the next phase of this development, borne out of the ESF deep understanding of the science landscape, funding context and needs of the research community at this critical juncture. Based on best international practice, ESF-Science Connect mobilises specialised experts and guarantees independence, probity and transparency in the assessment processes. ESF puts its expertise, experience and network at the service of its partners to ensure that research support is channelled to the most promising projects.
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The IdEx University of Bordeaux is one of the three French “Excellence Initiative” funded through the French government’s instrument “Investments for the Future” since 2010. A 10-year budget of €22 billion was earmarked for higher education and research, identified as key priorities. These investments target the creation of some ten world-class clusters of excellence in higher education and scientific research. One of the major programmes selected for this far-reaching endeavour is the University of Bordeaux Initiative of Excellence (IdEx Bordeaux). There are currently two other IdEx in France, Aix-Marseille and Strasbourg.
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This Press Release is also available in French version. Please click below:

Dossier de Presse "Contrat ESF-Initiative d'Excellence-Université de Bordeaux": Evaluation de projets de recherche scientifique