Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Periodic Report Summary 2 - AIAS (Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies)

Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies (AIAS) is a scientific platform for curiosity-driven and independent research that hosts excellent scholars from all disciplines. AIAS offers a highly competitive, international fellowship programme, and in its multidisciplinary setting, it focuses solely on research excellence and training of research talent. AIAS opened in 2013 with a group of 15 fellows, and in 2014 the AIAS-COFUND programme (grant no. 609033) supported by the Marie Curie Programme under FP7 was launched. The Institute is now running at its full capacity of 35 fellows.

The overall aim of Aarhus Institute of Advanced Studies is to enhance excellent research by offering a fellowship programme providing researchers with freedom and independence to develop their own ideas and careers with access to excellent facilities.

The programme is completely bottom-up based, and the selection of fellows is done on the basis of research proposals from applicants with research excellence as the sole selection criterion. The target group of the programme is researchers with at least two years of full-time research experience after completing their PhDs. The programme is open for both incoming mobility and reintegration. The duration of a fellowship is 6-18 months for seniors (+10 years) and 12-36 months for juniors. The proposed start dates for fellows are either 1 October, or 1 February each year.

The AIAS-COFUND fellowship programme offers the possibility of engaging in multidisciplinary interactions and collaborations that provide the fellows with the opportunity to gain new skills and to seek new perspectives on their research. The Institute offers activities of multidisciplinary character such as Fellows’ Seminars, where fellows give a talk; presenting their work, followed by discussion with other fellows from various fields of research, researchers from Aarhus University, and the public. The fellowship programme also offers a range of generic career developing opportunities.

The AIAS-COFUND fellowship programme has been running for 48 months and within this project period, four rounds of applications and selections have been carried out and completed. The four calls have resulted in 133 fellow years - 59 fellowships, of which 8 are reintegration, and 51 are incoming fellowships. The programme has received 142 applications for 22 fellowships in the first call, and 150 applications for 12 fellowships in the second call. The number increased to 211 for 10 fellowships in the third call, and lastly, in the fourth and final call, 161 applications were received for 15 fellowships.

The calls have been promoted widely, with an impressive outreach that is reflected in applications from more than 50 different nationalities, in the last two calls for applications. The calls for the AIAS-COFUND fellowship-programme are widely promoted, nationally and internationally (via job portals, such as the EURAXESS, and through the international IAS networks, and in the networks of AIAS and Aarhus University). AIAS also uses social media (Twitter) and the networks of current and former AIAS fellows to maximize visibility in relation to calls. From the launch of the call, on 2 November 2015, to the closure of the call, on 5 February 2016, the call for fellowships had more than 20,000 views, on EURAXESS and the AIAS website, in total.
The programme has developed as planned, and all deliverables have been realized according to the timeframe. The website has been updated with information about the programme, the calls, all application related documents, Guide for Applicants, promotion leaflet, FAQ, and information about all the selected fellows and their projects. Information about the fellowship programme can be found at

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