Funding models: High risk, high gain

The European Research Council was established in 2007 with a seven-year budget of €7.5 billion under the EU's 7th Framework Programme (FP7). The ERC funds investigator-initiated grants to applicants from any EU member state and in 2013 expects to award €1.8 billion ($2.3 billion), with 39% of its budget directed to the life sciences.