635 CNRS researchers have obtained a European Research Council (ERC) grant since 2007. This enables them to conduct exploratory research of their choice over a five-year period - all of which in exceptional conditions!

Nabila Aghanim

Nabila Aghanim

I’m an astrophysicist, so I need time to conduct theoretical work, analyze data and develop models. A time came when I had to find alternative financing to replace the multi-year funding that had been provided by the French National Centre for Space Studies (CNES) since 2009. Specifically, I wanted to continue investigating the data from the Planck satellite. In addition to dark matter, I am convinced that we also need to study ordinary matter, but we know practically nothing about this diffuse gas! At first I had misgivings about submitting to the ERC. I couldn’t see myself doing that kind of self-promotion. Some colleagues even see it as “selling themselves out” (denying themselves?)! Besides, I felt as though I didn’t have the right profile. I had held positions of responsibility in a number of projects, but compared with some colleagues I had few publications to show for as lead author. Fortunately, an exceptional training program offered by the Université Paris Saclay enabled me to overcome my misgivings. Being able to pursue basic research is well worth it!

How to apply

Useful CNRS resources

Entry points, contact and resources to put together your application and submit it to the ERC.