Consolidator Grants 2018: 15 funded projects will be carried out in Italy
From dark matter to genetic engineering. From machine learning to the history of science. From aesthetics in contemporary societies to black hole astrophysics.
These are just some of the disciplinary areas covered by the Italian projects selected in the framework of the Consolidator Grant Call 2018, promoted by the European Research Council (ERC). The results were recently published on the ERC site.
The call allocates a budget of 573 million euro to scientists of over 40 nationalities. Specifically, of the 291 researchers that have received funding, 35 are Italian: an extremely significant number, second only to that of German researchers (49 grants).
Looking at the number of research projects that will be conducted in our country, Italy ranked eighth among 21 host countries. Italy will host 15 research projects; 55 projects will be carried out in the United Kingdom, 38 in Germany, 32 in France, 29 in Switzerland, 23 in Israel, 19 in the Netherlands and 16 in Spain.
The University of Turin is top of the list with two funded projects: NBEB-SSP in the field of statistics, led by Stefano Favaro, and FACETS in the field of cultural studies, carried out by Massimo Leone.
Two grants were awarded to researchers affiliated with the National Institute for Nuclear Physics (INFN). Specifically, the INITIUM project proposed by Elisabetta Baracchini – from the Gran Sasso Science Institute (GSSI) – aims to develop an innovative detector for the direct search for dark matter. The 4DPHOTON project, presented by Massimiliano Fiorini, involves the development of an innovative instrument able to detect single photons in space and time with combined resolutions never obtained before.
Lombardy will host five projects funded under Consolidator Grants 2018. The University of Milan will host the bECOMiNG project in the field of health, led by Niccolò Bolli. Medicine is also the area covered by the ImmunoStem project led by Anna Christina Kajaste-Rudnitski at San Raffaele Hospital. Engineering and Sciences of the Universe, respectively, are the fields of the PAIDEIA and B Massive projects. The first project will be coordinated by Francesco Scotognella at the Polytechnic University of Milan, the second by Alberto Sesana at the University of Milano-Bicocca. The University of Bergamo will host the historical research TACITROOTS, led by Giulia Giannini.
Economics is the focus of the TechChange project that will be carried out by Philipp Kircher at the European University Institute. The remaining six projects that will be carried out in Italy are in the fields of physical, chemical and engineering sciences. Two of these projects are in the field of computer science: Diapason and SLING, carried out, respectively, by Ugo Dal Lago at the University of Bologna, and by Lorenzo Rosasco at the University of Genoa. Systems and communications engineering is the area covered by the Bright Eyes project, coordinated by Giuseppe Vicidomini at the Italian Institute of Technology (IIT).
Finally, chemical sciences is the field covered by the PRO-TOOLKITS and GEMS projects. The first one is proposed by Francesco Ricci and hosted at the University of Rome Tor Vergata, the second will be led by Chiara Cappelli at Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa.
With a budget of about 2 million euro per project, the Consolidator Grants are designed to support mid-career researchers. The grants are awarded by the ERC in the context of the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation Horizon 2020.