EU TalentON - a new contest for early career researchers

We are glad to announce the opening of applications to a new contest for early career researchers - EU TalentON. A pilot will take place for the first time this year in Leiden – European Capital of Science 2022.


This event sponsored by the Commission will challenge young talented researchers to find solutions contributing to the most pressing global issues. The four-day contest will bring together some 100 early career researchers from across EU and feature an extensive programme, co-created with academia, innovators and industry.

Divided into small teams, talented early career researchers will receive the necessary tools (such as workshops, company visits, lectures, master classes, personal guidance and cultural experiences) to create innovative and marketable solutions to challenges, which are based this year on EU Missions. At the end of the event, each team will pitch their solution to a professional jury and the public. Winners will receive sponsored prizes from the EU, industry and mentors.

Early career researchers can apply to join the EU TalentON until the end of June 2022.

Background & objectives

The EU TalentOn, as a part of Leiden 2022 European City of Science, directly contributes to the ERA Policy Agenda – Action 14. Specifically, the contest helps bring science closer to citizens by inviting them to co-create solutions for our most pressing challenges. During 2022, Leiden will be a platform on which everyone wanting to share science, knowledge, art, and skills can participate, thus establishing new connections between science and society in innovative, open, playful, and sincere ways.

Moreover, the contest will promote a career in research, facilitate cross-border and cross-sectoral collaboration among early-career researchers and encourage entrepreneurship and highlight opportunities in both academia and industry.

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