European Court of Auditors Postgraduate Research Grant Programme

European Court of Auditors Postgraduate Research Grant Programme

The European Court of Auditors and the European University Institute (Historical Archives of the European Union) in Florence (Italy) have set up a grant scheme for researchers in the field of European public finance and the EU budget.

Two research grants (5,000 euros each) are available in 2022 for researchers in the field of European public finance.

The aim is to promote original research into the EU’s public finances and their impact, as well as into the development of the EU's accountability and audit, in addition to forging a community of researchers in this field.

The scheme is open to academic researchers from a wide range of disciplines, including law, political science, economics, sociology, public administration and history.

It is open to postgraduate students (master’s and doctoral candidates) and to postdoctoral students, as well as to university teachers who have completed their master's degree or doctorate within the past ten years and who currently hold an academic post.

Each year two research grants of 5,000 euros each are made available to enable researchers to access and dig into the Historical Archives of the European Union, a unique resource for researchers at the EUI and far beyond. Housed in the ancient mansion Villa Salviati in Florence, the archives contain a wealth of primary documents deposited by the EU institutions, many of which have never been closely examined by researchers.

The scheme began in 2007 and has since enabled original research into many areas: the role of the EU institutions, the evolution of compliance, the development of audit methodology, shared management in policy implementation, multi-level governance, the EU regional policy, the emergence of institutional norms and values, the EU development policy, etc.


These grants are intended to enable researchers with an interest in public finance in the EU to broaden their research through access to the Historical Archives of the European Union, to which the Court has entrusted its own historical archives and those of the Audit Board (1958-1977).

Through the programme, the Court wishes to make it easier for researchers to access and consult the collections available at the Institute in Florence.


The following are eligible to apply:

  • all current postgraduate students (master’s and doctoral candidates);
  • all postdoctoral researchers or university teachers who have completed a master’s degree or doctorate within the ten years preceding the date the application is submitted and who currently hold an academic appointment.

Applicants should be preparing a thesis, dissertation, or scholarly article relating to EU public finance in any of the disciplines of human and social sciences (e.g. law, political science, economics, sociology, public administration and history).

Research projects presented by postgraduate students or postdoctoral researchers should preferably be directly related to their master’s or doctoral field of research.

In view of the nature of the files concerned, candidates should have a sound knowledge of English and French. Knowledge of other EU languages would be an advantage.

Only individual applications will be considered for the programme.

Candidates may not submit an application with the same research subject on more than two occasions.

Candidates must be nationals of a Member State of the European Union. These eligibility criteria will be strictly applied.

Application Procedure and Deadline

Applications must be sent by e-mail to the Historical Archives of the European Union (see address below) no later than 25 June 2022. Confirmation that an application has been accepted will be sent by e-mail one week after it is received.

Applications and all supporting documentation must be submitted in either English or French. The research itself and subsequent publications may be in any of the official languages of the European Union. The application file should include only the information required (see below).

Official application forms are available on the European University Institute's website.

Completed application files should include:

  • a detailed presentation of the research proposal, including a description of the research subject, its academic significance and its contribution to research in the field, any previous academic work performed in the field of study, and the proposed research methodology and timetable (five pages maximum);
  • a detailed annotated bibliography of sources and studies related to the research (five pages maximum);
  • a justification of the need to use the European Court of Auditors' archives in Florence;
  • a statement of the applicant’s plans for scholarly publication of the research results;
  • a list of the applicant’s previous publications (no more than 10, including the most recent);
  • a letter of recommendation from a professor of a university or university-level research institute, providing an evaluation of the scholarly significance of the project and an assessment of the candidate’s qualifications, abilities and motivation to carry out the proposed research.

Grant Awards

Successful applicants will receive a research grant of 5 000 € to cover all research expenses, including:

  • one round trip between the grant holder’s permanent residence and Florence;
  • accommodation in Florence for the duration of the grant holder's use of the archives.

The grant will be paid in two instalments:

  • a first instalment of 2 000 € at the start of the research, as attested by the Director of the Historical Archives of the European Union;
  • a second instalment of 3 000 € after an essay on the grant holder’s research subject has been submitted to the Selection Committee.

Selection and Notification

The Selection Committee is composed of current or former officials of the European Court of Auditors, recognised experts in the field of public finance and audit, and the former Director of the Historical Archives of the European Union. Decisions are based upon the quality of the application file, the significance and originality of the proposed research, the feasibility of the project, the candidate’s ability to carry out the research satisfactorily, and the importance of using the Archives in Florence to consult the European Court of Auditors' archives.

Applicants will be notified of the outcome of their application by 8 July 2022.

Publications and Commitments

Grant holders will undertake to ensure that all subsequent publications or productions using in whole or in part the results obtained under the auspices of the research grant will appropriately acknowledge the Postgraduate Research Grant Programme. In addition, they will provide the Historical Archives of the European Union with a copy of any such publications or productions.

Upon completing their stay, grant holders will submit to the Selection Committee an essay on their research subject.

Covid-19 Special Measures

According to the grant rules, the research work at the Archives in Florence is expected to start within 2022. Nonetheless, depending on the evolution of the current COVID-19 epidemic, and in particular in the case of possible limitations to travels at national and international level, the awarding of the grant – for successful candidates – may be extended to a later date.

In light of the anti-COVID measures taken by the Italian government and at the European University Institute, the reading room is open to the public at the usual business hours under special rules and conditions that can be consulted at Services for Users. These temporary measures are regularly adapted in consideration of the Covid-19 pandemic developments.


Applications, all related correspondence and queries should be sent to:


Tel: +39 055 4685 661

Website: Historical Archives of the European Union (

For more information about the institutional profile and activities of the European Court of Auditors, please consult the Court's website:

Additional Information

Selection Committee

  • Jean-Jack Beurotte, former Director at the European Court of Auditors (Chairman of the Selection Committee);
  • Carlo degli Abbati, former official of the European Court of Auditors and lecturer at the University of Genoa.
  • Gilberto Moggia, senior Official at the European Court of Auditors;
  • Jean-Marie Palayret, former Director of the Historical Archives of the European Union and former Associate Professor of the History of European Integration at the University of Strasbourg.
Date de candidature
Humanités : Histoire
Sciences sociales : Economie, Gestion et administration publique, Relations internationales, Science politique