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The Université Côte d’Azur makes plans to attract and welcome world-renowned researchers

Financial support and help with settling in are just some of the arrangements made by the Université Côte d’Azur (UCA) in the last two years to attract and welcome world-renowned researchers under the best possible conditions, thanks to its official Initiative of Excellence status and funding under the IDEX program to promote centers of excellence in higher education and research.


Publication : 05/10/2018
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At the 6th annual symposium of Vice Presidents for Research and Technology Transfer, held in Bordeaux on 27th and 28th August 2018 by the Conference of University Presidents (CPU), Antoine Petit, the CEO of the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS) spoke about the challenge facing French universities of hosting research “stars” in attractive conditions, worthy of the world's top universities. And his view was that “it would be quite good if we managed to recruit one or two a year per major university. We’ve got all the means to welcome them together”, he added, “it’s just a matter of will”.

UCA has clearly demonstrated this determined will and, thanks to its IDEX status, has established an ambitious policy in close collaboration with public scientific and technical research establishments such as the CNRS, the French Institute for Research in Computer Science and Automation (INRIA), the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (INSERM) and the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD). The establishments are combining their efforts both to open up posts through a competitive process (as the “stars” cannot escape the usual tried and tested methods of selection) and, at the same time, offer particularly attractive conditions for welcoming them. Besides the acknowledged attractions of the French Riviera, the conditions under the Chairs of Excellence program include special financial support in the form of allowances, research grants and assistance (post-doctoral fellow or engineer). Support in settling in is also provided. The various services offered by the Welcome Center and “hosting agreements” for researchers’ children in international sections of educational establishments are just some of the many factors to attract and give the best possible welcome to established "stars” and particularly promising young researchers alike.

At the end of two years of IDEX funding, UCA has already recruited three Chairs of Excellence in this way (INRIA, CNRS and IRD) and three young researchers who are recipients of a special grant awarded under the highly selective ATIP-Avenir research funding program run by INSERM and the CNRS.