Despite many warning voices pointing to the organisational weaknesses of this instrument, the European Research Council (ERC) is considered a success story of European research policy. How did that come about? This research note takes a look inside the ERC’s administrative body, the ERC Executive Agency. Based on personal experience, the text provides information how tensions between scientific and administrative expectations towards the performance of this agency could be alleviated, and how a unique social fabric consisting of double compliance, complementary efficiency, and two-tier loyalty emerged. The note ends with some cautious remarks concerning the ERC’s future.
European Research Area; Research and Development; organizational theory; science and politics; European research policy
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