Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


WELCOME II — Result In Brief

Project ID: 246542
Funded under: FP7-PEOPLE
Country: Portugal

A call to reinforce Portugal's research potential

A Marie Curie action co-funded 40 fellows through a reintegration programme targeting career development in all scientific fields. Awarded under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) People COFUND, the 5-year project has contributed to Portugal's research potential and provided added value for the European Research Area (ERA).
A call to reinforce Portugal's research potential
The project WELCOME II (Promoting the return of researchers to ERA) supported reintegration of experienced researchers from any EU Member State or Associate Country in a research centre or other research institution in Portugal. The project's focus was young postdocs who had left Europe for a third country either to obtain their PhD degrees or to work in a more advanced scientific environment than their host country had to offer.

Coordinated by the Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT), the main funding agency for research in Portugal, the initiative invited researchers to submit applications together with Portuguese institutions interested in hosting high-potential researchers with three-year employment contracts. A total of 31 research institutions signed on with the programme, including 2 private foundations.

The programme addressed two levels of PhD experience: young postdocs (fellows A) and postdocs with at least five years research experience after obtaining their PhD (fellows B). The 40 postdocs were chosen from a pool of 67 applicants through the project's one and only call. All were previously residing outside Europe, mainly in the United States.

Fellows were free to propose their own research projects in line with their targeted career development. Twenty-one of them had obtained their PhD more than five years ago.

A number of fellows eventually decided not to sign a contract, and some ended their employment before the contract was up. After completing their 36-month employment contracts, fellows were given the option to stay at their host institution for an additional 6 months through an Invited Scientist Grant supported by FCT.

Although WELCOME II did not meet all of its original goals, the FCT marked successes in other areas and thus contributed to attracting and retaining researchers in Portugal and the ERA.

Related information


Portugal, research potential, reintegration, European Research Area
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