Today the European Commission announced that 8 doctoral and 13 postdoctoral research training programmes will receive co-funding of €80 million in total from the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) over a timespan of five years. The 21 organisations from nine EU Member States and three Associated Countries achieved the highest scores among the 124 applications evaluated under the 2017 MSCA COFUND call for proposals.

The selected organisations (among them universities, funding agencies, research organisations and foundations) will use the EU funds to optimise the range and quality of training opportunities for a thousand promising scientists recruited from the four corners of the world, to expand their international cooperation, strengthen collaboration with industry and extend research across disciplines. As a result these talented COFUND researchers may deliver exceptional findings, which can serve as a magnet to obtain additional funding for the participating organisations.

The Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, Tibor Navracsics, said:

"With MSCA COFUND, the EU is now investing in truly innovative research training programmes for doctoral candidates and experienced researchers, enabling them to make full use of their talents and empowering the organisations supporting them to gain competitiveness on a global scale!"

Under Horizon 2020, the EU's framework programme for Research and Innovation, the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions foster excellence in researchers’ training and career development across Europe by cofunding innovative doctoral and postdoctoral research training programmes. The MSCA play an eminent role in supporting the design of innovative research training programmes.

MSCA's bottom-up approach encourages and supports novel ways of training researchers. Organisations are free to implement cutting-edge and pioneering elements in their programmes. As a result, MSCA COFUND reinforces the competitiveness of participating organisations. At the same time, the MSCA are widely acknowledged as best practice with a view to working conditions and career development opportunities for researchers at any stage of their careers. Researchers benefit from excellent scientific training and acquire transferable skills and competencies which will boost their career prospects in Europe and beyond.

For more information on projects to be funded as part of the 2017 call for MSCA-COFUND, please see the examples in annex.

The next call for proposals of MSCA-COFUND will open on 12 April, with a budget of €80 million.