I'm from university from Central and Eastern Europe (btw. underrepresented in ERC). I contributed to the research proposal of my colleague for ERC starting grant. However, within internal review process at university level, representatives decided not to support the grant application and in addition they forbidden to apply even with another host institution with arguments
- that the application may damage reputation of university
- and may compete for funding with another "more preferred" team at university.
- the outcome of the possible evaluation of the proposal may prevent application in next calls.
(Btw. the topic of research is mathematics and computational biology. No experiments on animals or humans or other possibly disputable ethic issues are involved :-) )
I've found in some ERC guides that there are restriction for unsuccessful applicants - thus point 3) is relevant. But are points 1) or 2) relevant? Are there any "quota" for host institution. Is host institution restricted if application evaluation outcome is "B" or "C" or worse like "breach of research integrity"?
PI now do not expect funding from ERC, as success rate is only 12% and almost no support were given by university to improve proposal further. But is it worth to try to apply with support of another host institution (small spin-off company) just to get feedback from review panel?