SNSF Starting Grant

The SNSF Starting Grants 2023 target researchers who wanted to apply for a 2023 ERC Starting Grant or for a 2023 SNSF Professorial Fellowship, in replacement of these funding schemes.

Institute of Physics

This document describes the process for getting support from the Institute of Physics (IPHYS) to apply as an external candidate or as an IPHYS (non-professor) scientist. EPFL professors can refer to the SNSF Starting Grants application toolkit for their own application process.


IPHYS accepts both external and internal candidates. SNSF Starting Grant applicants who would like to be hosted at IPHYS must first be approved by the hosting institute according to the process described below.

For the purpose of the internal selection process, a professor of the institute needs to endorse the application. SNSF Starting Grant applicants should therefore first obtain the support from an IPHYS professor (called the supporting professor in the following).

Upon successful application, SNSF Starting Grant awardees will receive    the title of Assistant Professor (non tenure-track). They head their own research group and supervise the PhD students involved in their project. SNSF Starting Grant awardees receive 100 kCHF of start-up funds.

Description of the selection process

The supporting professor is responsible to ensure that the candidate they support is of outstanding quality. The supporting professor also needs to state in an endorsement letter (using the template provided below) either that they commit to provide the necessary space and infrastructure for the success of the proposed project, or they need to provide a list of required lab (with specifications) and office space, and infrastructure. Finally, the supporting professor must be ready to take over the supervision of the involved PhD students should the grant holder leave EPFL.

The IPHYS selection is based on the following criteria:

  1. Scientific excellence
  2. Availability of resources
  3. Strategic and synergetic advantage for IPHYS.

The procedure proceeds as follows:

  • Applications should include the following documents: CV, publication list, short summary of main achievements to date (max. 1 page), outline of proposed project (max. 3 pages), reasons for IPHYS as host (max. 1 page), endorsement letter from the supporting professor (using the template provided below). 
  • Depending on the number of candidates applying, all or a selected number of candidates will be interviewed by the IPHYS Executive Committee, if possible in person or otherwise remotely (1 and/or 5 December 2022, depending on the number of candidates selected for interviews). The professors supporting candidates are invited to attend the interviews as well.
  • Based on the interviews and the files provided by the candidates, the Executive Committee and Director of the institute will decide which candidates are supported by IPHYS to submit an application at the SNSF. This list of candidates will be proposed to the FSB Dean who takes the final decision.
  • Supported candidates will then need to fill out the EPFL online pre-application form for SNSF Professorial Fellowships, and upload a CV, pdf generated from their mySNF draft application (including project summary and requested funding) to obtain the EPFL General confirmation letter from the Research Office.
  • Supported candidates will also be asked to provide IPHYS a draft Detailed confirmation letter (Word format, not signed, using the IPHYS template provided below) in order to have it signed by the Director of the institute.

The application toolkit is available here and contains all details. Please read all the documents carefully, follow the instructions and make sure that your application file fulfils all the requirements. Incomplete files will not be considered. If you have questions regarding the IPHYS procedure, please contact Blandine Jérôme ([email protected], +41 21 69 33376). If you have questions regarding the application toolkit, please contact the Research Office ([email protected]).

Timeline & deadlines

IPHYS deadlines are at midnight (23h59) on the indicated date.  Files received after the deadline will not be considered.

IPHYS pre-application deadline: November 7th, 2022

Announcement of interview short list: ~November 16th, 2022

IPHYS selection interview: December 1st and/or 5th, 2022, depending on the number of candidates selected for interviews

SNSF application deadline: February 1st, 2023 (17h)


IPHYS pre-application site:

IPHYS template for endorsement by supporting professor

IPHYS template for detailed confirmation letter (only for candidates supported by IPHYS)

EPFL toolkit for SNSF Starting Grants 

 EPFL online pre-application form

SNSF Starting Grants