• TOPMed10
    Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions COFUND Programme


Frequently Asked Questions

Fellowship Call

The Programme will fund up to 10 Fellowships in total across two calls.

Your proposal should relate to the broad area of –omics driven Personalised Medicine which spans spans basic to clinical research disciplines including but not limited to translational biology, computational modelling, molecular bioinformatics, biostatistics, statistical genetics and clinical informatics. Your proposal should fall within the research expertise of one of the Programme Principal Investigators.

The deadline for submission of applications under Call 2 is 30th June 2016.

Each Fellow will receive a yearly gross salary in a range between €37,060 and €41,630 depending on the type of Fellowship – for more details on the types of Fellowships and their funding levels please go to Fellowship Funding section of the website. Additionally, each Fellow will also receive a yearly mobility allowance of €6,500 to cover expenses linked to the personal household; an annual family allowance €2,700 if applicable; and a yearly contribution to research costs of €15,900.

Family is defined as persons linked to the Fellow by (i) marriage, or (ii) a relationship with equivalent status to a marriage recognised by the legislation of the country where this relationship was formalised; or (iii) dependent children who are actually being maintained by the Fellow. Should one or more of these apply to your circumstances you will be eligible for a family allowance.

TOPMED10 Programme offers two types of Fellowships:

  • Fellow Level 1 for Incoming candidates with 0-3 years post PhD or equivalent research experience
  • Fellow Level 2 for Incoming candidates with 3+ years post PhD or equivalent research experience

Fellow Level 1 are funded under this Programme for three years while Fellow Level 2 are for two years.


Applicants from any country in the world can apply for both types of Fellowships, provided that they meet the mobility criteria. At the time of the deadline for submission of proposals, applicants shall not have resided or carried out their main activity (work, studies, etc.) in Ireland for more than 12 months in the 3 years immediately prior to the deadline for submission date. Compulsory national service and/or short stays such as holidays are not taken into account.

TOPMED10 Programme has no age limit for any researchers applying for its Fellowships. Applicants have to meet the specific eligibility criteria outlined in detail in the Eligibility Criteria section of the website, but age is not one of them.

Researchers who apply for TOPMED10 Fellowships Level 1 and 2 must, at the time of the call deadline, be in possession of a doctoral degree or have at least 4 years of full-time equivalent (FTE) research experience.

At least four years of full-time equivalent (FTE) research experience applies to researchers who have been working on their PhD for at least four years and are near completion and those who have four years of full time experience in research, but are not working towards PhD completion (examples of such researchers include: someone with MD (medical doctor, which is not considered equivalent to a PhD in the Marie Curie Actions) or a research assistant in academia or industry).

All research undertaken after the researcher has gained a university degree/diploma giving them access to doctoral studies (the degree/diploma must entitle the holder to embark on doctoral studies without having to acquire any further qualifications) can be counted. Research experience in an organisation where research activity was only part of applicant’s duties will not be counted as full time research experience. Applicants lacking the requisite years of full-time postgraduate research experience by the deadline for the submission of proposals are not eligible.

The PhD completion date to be used to calculate the length of applicant’s post PhD experience is the viva date, provided that the researcher has successfully passed the viva and has been recommended for the PhD award as a result of it.

UCD wishes to encourage those researchers who have temporarily left research to return to their research careers. UCD also values those working experiences that do not qualify as pure ‘research experience’, but that nevertheless are valuable experiences in the researcher’s career, such as periods in project management. UCD also values research experience in other sectors, such as industry, where applicants may not have been in a position to publish in peer-reviewed journals. Therefore, career breaks of up to 5 years are taken into account.

Career breaks include parental leave, maternity leave, caring leave, or periods of working in an industrial or governmental/public sector setting where the applicant was not in a position to publish peer-reviewed publications, or periods spent working in a purely teaching position where the applicant was unable to continue their research.


Applications for the TOPMED10 Programme are only be accepted through the online application system, which will be open on the Programme website during the submission phase of each Call.

Yes, but if you are successful you will have to choose one of them in case they overlap.

No, this documentation is not needed at the application submission stage. Successful candidates will be required to present it prior to accepting the grant.

Only applications written in English will be accepted.

It is sufficient to note the references of the proposal in footnotes. A list of publications and project relevant references can be submitted as part of the proposal; however, it is not mandatory.

Please send the Programme Manager a short project summary by email. The Programme Manager will respond to you within a few days to let you know whether you can apply.

No, it is not possible for any applicant to submit additional material or information once their application has been submitted and online application system is closed.

Completeness of the application will be checked at the eligibility checking phase. Incomplete submissions will be deemed ineligible. Applicants can resubmit their application under the second TOPMED10 call.

All eligible applications will be sent out for external international peer-review. Each application will be evaluated by three independent assessors. More details on the evaluation procedures can be found in the Application Process section and Call Documentation.


Applicants are not required to submit their diplomas with their application. They will be asked to submit their diploma and other relevant documentation only if successful. In such case, diploma and other documentation is required to be translated into English.

It is expected that successful Fellows will start the Fellowship at the earliest convenience within four months of acceptance. Given that transnational mobility is a key feature of the programme, UCD recognises that additional time may be required to allow a Fellow to complete their previous activities and move to UCD. Consequently, the starting date for each Fellow will be negotiated on individual basis by the Fellow in question and the UCD Energy Institute.

UCD TOPMED10 Fellowships can only be carried out at UCD, Dublin, Ireland, with the exception of the optional secondment.

The optional secondment can be carried out in an organisation located in any country in the world. However, the choice of the Secondment Host Organisation must be based on its appropriateness to Fellow’s research, training and professional career development.

All Fellows need to be in a possession of a PhD diploma at the time of the start of their Fellowship. The only exception includes researchers with at least 4 years of full-time equivalent (FTE) research experience who at the time of application were not enrolled on a doctoral programme and are not working towards a PhD completion.


Yes, you can apply again under future TOPMED10 Calls.

All applicants will receive feedback on applications submitted, including results of the eligibility check, final score and qualitative assessment from the external peer-review process.

It is expected that the final phase of the selection process, interviews, will take place in April/May 2016 for Call 1. Offers to the successful applicants will be made by the UCD Human Resources department shortly after the Selection Committee makes its recommendations.

Information about living and working in Ireland can be accessed from multiple sources. For information on work related matters please go to the Working Environment and Support Services for Fellows sections of the TOPMED10 website. For more information about living in Ireland and Dublin please go to the Resources section of the website.