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The National Operational Programme (NOP) on Research and Innovation 2014-2020, under Axis I "Human Capital" and in compliance with the National Smart Specialization Strategy 2014-2020 (NSSS), promotes actions aimed at fostering mobility and attraction of university researchers.
The notice, published with the Directorial Decree of 27 February 2018, No. 407, involves 110 million euro in funding and two lines of action:
- Line 1 - Researcher Mobility: support for the recruitment under 36-month fixed-term contracts of young doctoral graduates with a qualification obtained not more than four years after publication of the notice, who are to be oriented towards international mobility (spending between 6 and 15 months abroad);
- Line 2 – Attraction of researchers: support for the recruitment under 36-month fixed-term contracts of young doctoral graduates currently working outside the regions covered by the NOP 2014-2020, with qualifications obtained not more than eight years after publication of the notice and having acquired at least two years' experience, including in the management of the administrative procedures related to participation in international programmes/projects based on a competitive process, at other universities/research institutes/firms with registered offices abroad.
Proposals were submitted by public and private universities based in the less developed regions (Basilicata, Calabria, Campania, Puglia and Sicily) and transition regions (Abruzzo, Molise and Sardinia). The financial management is based on the Standard Cost Units (SCUs) thus simplifying the bureaucratic procedures for universities.
The proposals were evaluated by a Selection Committee according to the criteria of scientific validity of proposals (novelty, originality and interdisciplinary nature of the plan), the adequacy of the profile and number of researchers involved, the consistency of the content of the plan with the NSSS, the potential to start/develop collaborations with public and private scientific institutions and national or international companies and, finally, the capacity to support and implement the submitted plan (technical and organizational feasibility).