Homerton Fellow Awarded €1.5m ERC Research Grant

Photo: Veronika Fikfak

We are delighted to announce that Homerton Fellow Dr Veronika Fikfak has been awarded a €1.5 million European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant by the European Commission.

Her project - 'A Nudge in the Rights Direction? Redesigning the Architecture of Human Rights Remedies'  - explores how different approaches affect the way states comply with human rights requirements and incorporate them into their own domestic laws. Through research in six countries, the project aims to identify ways in which human rights institutions can deter future violations.

The ERC received over 3,100 proposals from researchers around the world, and granted funding to just a handful of these. The ERC praised Dr Fikfak's proposal as 'highly creative and innovative', and 'ground-breaking'. Seven reviewers agreed that the project promised to generate 'significant outcomes' for human rights and international law. Bringing together social scientists, behavioural economists and computer scientists from across the EU, the project will run for five years from 2019.

ERC Starting Grants are intended to support high calibre researchers at the beginning of their career, enabling them to form their own teams or programmes. Researchers must demonstrate the originality, ambition and feasibility of their scientific proposal. Grants are awarded purely on the basis of scientific excellence. Proposals which cross the boundaries between different fields of research, address new and emerging fields of research or introduce unconventional, innovative approaches are particularly encouraged.

Chair of the Faculty of Law, Professor John Bell, commented: 

"The award of this grant from the ERC is a stunning achievement by Veronika Fikfak. Only one in every eight evaluated projects across the EU are funded by the ERC. Not only does this show the high quality of Veronika’s own work, but it shows the continuing high standing of the research conducted in British universities among our European colleagues. We welcome the UK Government’s declared objective to continue to participate in European research schemes, and in the ERC in particular, for many years to come."