These are application-times again. Now for the EU financed Marie Curie postdocs. Those have been around for a while in different shapes and versions. I applied for mine back in 2000, but back in those days they were not as good as they are now. I remember being granted both my MC application, and a local STINT application, and choosing the local STINT-one because it provided better fundings. This is, however, not the case anymore. Being granted a MC financed postdoc is both a comparatively financially good offer, and also an excellent merit to have in the CV. This year we are having applicants from three different countries to our aDNA group.
On the whole I think EU have been quite successful in their approach to research. Some of their grants are very popular, including the MC grants, the ERC grants, and the larger ITNs (which are collaborations between at least 3 countries for training Ph.D.s). The goal from EU is to attract excellent researchers to EU countries, to increase mobility within the EU research community, and to train early stage reserchers in the best possible way (there are other goals too, like interaction with non-academia etc, but I think these three are the major once). And as I said, I think EU have succeeded in all these goals with these and other grants. For us, out at the universities, it is an extra source of fundings. And also a quality-test. If a lot of people are applying for MC to come to your laboratory, or if you are invited to ITN applications, then you are doing something right. So good luck to all of you out there writing MC applications these days.