ANICT

Towards a sustainable research career with progression based on merit

Investigador FCT 2013 results

The results from the Investigador FCT 2013 call were just released and can be found here. On the 2nd December 2013, the institutional contracts between FCT and the host institutions will be signed, in a ceremony to be held in at the “Pavilhão do Conhecimento”, in Lisbon. The individual contracts between the candidates and the institutions will be signed until the end of the year. IF2013

 

 

 

 

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82 responses to “Investigador FCT 2013 results

  1. Franklin November 30, 2013 at 7:24 am

    It seems that the 204 candidates selected were from Associate labs or excellent centres. This was same case in Investigador 2012 contest. Any one from other centres got the grant in 2012 or 2013? your reply is very important for those applying from low ranked centres in the future. Thank you.

  2. Armanda December 1, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    I know at least someone who got an investigator FCT grant in 2012 and somebody else who got it in 2013, on centers which do not have excellent, but very good… So the competition is not only for “excellent” centers…

  3. Susana Araujo December 2, 2013 at 1:18 am

    Boa noite. Gostava de saber qual a posição da ANICT face ao decorrer de todo este processo referente a divulgação dos resultados do concurso Investigador FCT2013. Porque não é disponibilizada das avaliações de TODOS os candidatos aquando a informação do resultado? Ha problemas na plataforma informatica… Compreendo. Mas também existe outras formas de se divulgar de forma segura informaçao (PDF?). É possível constatar que há centros que sabem as classificações dos seus candidatos financiados e a publicitam. Apenas os Investigadores de Excelência tem direito a saber a sua nota de seriação? E outros: têm menos direitos ou menos valor ? Muito obrigada pela atenção!

    • nunocerca December 2, 2013 at 9:50 am

      Susana: a ANICT está a fazer esforços por compreender o que se passou e tem um reunião agendada com a FCT para esta semana. Compreendemos a ansiedade por parte de todos e estamos a tentar ser o mais céleres possíveis. Brevemente iremos informar os nossos associados e tomar uma posição sobre o assunto.

      • Susana Araujo December 2, 2013 at 11:59 am

        Nuno: Não é uma questão de ansiedade, essa passou quando se recebeu o resultado, 6 horas após ter sido formalmente comunicada a admissão a concurso. Do que eu falo é de transparência do processo e igualdade de direitos. O que está em causa é o direito que TODOS os investigadores tem a conhecer o resultado da sua avaliação. Nunca em concurso algum publico que eu conheça (atenção não tenho conhecimentos de procedimento concursal publico, por isso posso estar) é publicitada uma lista de candidatos aprovados e notas sem que todos tenham conhecimento das suas avaliações. Também me parece estranho que a avaliação tenha ocorrido antes do candidato saber de foi admitido a concurso. Se me permite o comentário: a tomada de posição da ANICT não carece da reunião prévia com a FCT: o seu primeiro objectivo como associação é apoiar e representar os Investigadores Científicos que trabalham em Portugal.

        Obrigada pela sua resposta e atenção.

  4. Leitor incrédulo, Algures neste país desgovernado December 2, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    A pérola maior deste concurso é estarem hoje a assinar contratos com as instituições sem que a avaliação tenha sido tornada pública. Acho estranho a ANICT não ter posição sobre o assunto…

    • nunocerca December 2, 2013 at 4:37 pm

      Caro leitor incrédulo: se conhece a ANICT, saberá certamente que todos os membros dos corpos sociais são voluntários. Todos têm diversas funções nas universidades e centros de investigação onde trabalham. Como qualquer outra associação, devemos seguir os nossos procedimentos internos, procedimentos esses que passam por convocar com 1 semana de antecedência, os elementos da direcção, para reuniões. Uma tomada de posição por uma associação não é uma tomada de posição por um dos membros, nem que esse membro tenha uma posição nos corpos sociais. Essa convocatória já foi efetuada, e após a reunião da direcção, onde serão tomados em conta todos os contributos recebidos pelos nossos associados, iremos então tomar a nossa posição pública.

      • Jorge Paiva December 2, 2013 at 6:59 pm

        Boa tarde
        Estou incrédulo com a resposta do Nuno Cerca
        sobre as dificuldades de reunião e de tomada de posição sobre tão graves irregularidades pela FCT.
        Sobretudo tendo passado quase uma semana após a saída dos não resultados.
        Será que a associação quer ficar bem na fotografia FCT?

  5. Maria Barata December 2, 2013 at 9:16 pm

    Já o concurso anterior, 2012, não foi sério. Havia apenas 80 vagas que depois passaram a 150. E pouco se pronunciou sobre isso. Nunca vi um concurso, muito menos público, que muda as regras a meio do jogo. Incluisivamente, sei de pessoas que tinham lacrado o seu concurso e a FCT emitiu um novo guião posteriormente. Concordo com a Susana, quando se indigna com o facto de os candidatos desconhecerem os resultados.
    Já agora queria referir que as áreas científicas que a FCT disponibiliza não são as mais adequadas a certas áreas de investigação. Há investigadores que sentem que concorreram em áreas que não se ajustam e que podem ser prejudicados. Bem sei que nem todas podem ser contempladas, muito específicas, mas por exemplo, o facto de não haver ciências do espaço, antes contempladas, prejudicou a avaliação de certos investigadores.

    Por último, se de facto só foram atribuídos contratos a centros muito bom ou excelentes, é injusto, pois a avaliação dos centros não se realiza desde 2007, e pode haver centros que poderiam ter alterado a sua avaliação, quer para melhor, quer para pior.
    Gostava que a ANICT abordasse estes aspectos na reunião que terá com a FCT. Obrigada.

    • nunocerca December 2, 2013 at 11:37 pm

      Maria: em relação à questão dos 80 lugares que passaram a 150, está relacionado com lista de espera, que a FCT sempre disse que poderia existir. Este ano aconteceu o mesmo.

      A ANICT lançou, durante a semana passada (com término no passado domingo), uma recolha de opiniões, entre os seus associados e irá apresentar os seus pontos de vista na reunião de próxima quinta feira.

  6. nunofazevedo December 3, 2013 at 10:55 am

    Embora também faça parte da direção da ANICT vou deixar aqui uma opinião pessoal.

    Por norma a ANICT tenta ter um papel construtivo com a FCT. Foi assim que algumas melhorias foram sendo introduzidas no sistema: Exemplo disso foram a introdução dos projetos exploratórios e uma maior exigência nos concursos de doutoramento e pós-doutoramento da FCT, onde a argumentação para se conceder ou não conceder uma bolsa tem sido no geral muito mais fundamentada. Talvez por ser um concurso mais recente, os IF2012 e os IF2013 tem tido efetivamente mais lacunas. No entanto, e a exemplo do que tem sucedido anteriormente, na minha opinião a ANICT só deve tomar uma posição depois de se inteirar de todos os factos, e para tal precisa de ouvir a versão da FCT. A todos os que tiverem falhas a apontar, incentivamos que o façam para que confrontemos a FCT com as mesmas. Uma resposta oficial da direção da ANICT será certamente depois tomada.

  7. João Lopes December 3, 2013 at 4:10 pm

    Caros Colegas
    Como referido aqui, a ANICT está a reunir todas as reclamações relativamente ao concurso IF2013 para que possam ser discutidas em sede própria. No final desta semana, a ANICT tomará posição sobre o processo de avaliação do concurso em causa e esclarecerá todos os seus Associados sobre os procedimentos realmente adotados pela FCT no processo de avaliação.
    João Lopes
    Presidente ANICT

  8. João Lopes December 3, 2013 at 4:13 pm

    Já agora refiro que se encontra-se disponivel no site da FCT um esclarecimento sobre o concurso IF2013:
    http://www.fct.pt/noticias/index.phtml.pt?id=50&/2013/12/Esclarecimento_sobre_a_avalia%C3%A7%C3%A3o_do_concurso_Investigador_FCT_2013

    • iacopo December 5, 2013 at 4:44 pm

      Well, that is not a clarification, rather an offence to one’s intelligence. It’s like I tell you that you are stupid: the minimum you can do is asking why and I reply “I can not tell you, but believe me you are, no doubt”!!!

  9. fariasgang December 3, 2013 at 4:47 pm

    Mas um concurso em que se passa de 80 a 150 a meio é desculpável com uma lista de espera. Estou pasmado!

  10. Isaac Vidana December 4, 2013 at 10:56 am

    Tenho uma pergunta. Alguem sabe quem são os três avaliadores externos (dos
    estrangeiros e um português) que apoio a decisão do painel ?. Estou à procura dos
    nomens mas não consego saber quen são.

  11. Salete Balula December 4, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    Nos esclarecimentos apresentados no site da FCT, eles referem que há um painel internacional apoiado por um membro português e dois estrangeiros. Não terão os candidatos direito a conhecer esse painel de avaliação? Mais importante ainda, não terão direito a conhecer os critérios de avaliação? independentemente dos problemas informáticos relatados pela FCT. A avaliação foi feita atribuindo-se logo à partida um dado número de vagas para cada área de investigação?? Quem decidiu essa distribuição??
    Porque é que os parâmetros e os critérios de avaliação estão sempre a mudar de ano para ano??
    É legalmente correcto os contratos serem assinados sem se conhecer a avaliação e os critérios de avaliação?? Será mesmo assim ainda válida a reclamação e recurso de membros não admitidos no concurso?? Quais serão os direitos dos membros não admitidos?

    Estas são apenas algumas das perguntas que gostaria que a ANICT se informa-se junto da FCT de forma a poder esclarecer os investigadores.

    Muito obrigada pela atenção

    • nunocerca December 4, 2013 at 10:56 pm

      Caro Salete, pelo que percebi do comunicado da FCT, eles apenas divulgaram o resultado final do concurso, de forma a agilizar a assinatura dos contrato (constrangimentos orçamentais). Dessa forma, as avaliações detalhadas ainda não foram divulgadas e certamente será nessa altura que se conhecerá mais detalhes. É importante notar que o prazo da audiência prévia apenas irá começar quando toda a informação for divulgada.

      • iacopo December 5, 2013 at 3:50 pm

        Just to add another legal doubt to the incredibly long list of things not working here: how could these people be asked to sign the new contracts just about one week after the notification of the approval of their applications, if usually one legally needs an advance of one to two months to declare his/her intention to quit the present contract, to move to a new one? Were all these people unemployed?

  12. Salete Balula December 5, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    Pois é caros colegas penso que há muita coisa para ser esclarecida de forma a entendermos com claridade a avaliação efectuada neste concurso. Assim, procuramos perante a ANICT que nos ajude e nos represente a todos nestes esclarecimentos após o contacto com a FCT. Aguardamos noticias em breve acerca do encontro da ANICT com a FCT. Obrigada

  13. Isaac Vidana December 5, 2013 at 10:26 pm

    Uma pergunta mais. Porque na base do concurso falava-se de 150 posições e no final apareceram 204 selecionados ?. Em que momento apareceram 54 posições mais ?. Durante a
    avaliação do painel ou entre a avaliação e o mail informativo sem informação nenhuma ?.
    Acho também muito “curiosa” a pressa para assinar os contratos.

    • nunocerca December 5, 2013 at 10:41 pm

      Isaac: já em 2012 aconteceu o mesmo e a explicação é simples: o número base é o compromisso que a FCT tem em abrir o número de candidaturas. Este número é sempre inferior do que a disponibilidade orçamental. Quando existe um maior número de candidatos muito competitivos, a FCT pode usar o orçamento de reserva para contratar esses candidatos. É uma estratégia de segurança… No programa anterior (Ciência), foram abertas vagas em que concorreu apenas um candidato, o que pode resultar em candidatos não competitivos a obter as posições…

      • Isaac Vidana December 6, 2013 at 11:29 am

        O che acontecio em 2012 ja foi “curioso”. Os 80 contratos iniciais transformaron-se em casi 160 (159 para serem exactos), es decir dobrou-se. Certamente, dobrar o numero é uma boa estrategia de segurançã. A FCT tive a oportunidade este ano de facer as cosas bem, corregindo os errores do ano pasado, mas parece que não quiso aproveitar-la.

  14. Outro leitor incredulo December 6, 2013 at 6:30 am

    A ANICT aceitou sem questionar tudo o que a FCT disse no esclarecimento? A FCT ocultou factos antes, de algum modo ate mentiu. Acho estranho que aceitem tudo o que a FCT diz sem questionar.
    Aqui vai o anuncio de uma reunião que estao a organizar para discutir as irregularidades:
    http://5dias.wordpress.com/2013/12/04/apelo-irregularidades-na-avaliacao-do-concurso-investigador-fct-2013/

  15. Joao_A_Lopes December 6, 2013 at 10:11 am

    Peço desculpa mas nao podemos na ANICT responder a comentários anonimos.
    Todos sao livres de contestar pelos meios legais que julgarem necesarios.

    ANICT

  16. Isaac Vidana December 6, 2013 at 12:01 pm

    Queria fazer outra pergunta, para a ANICT. Estou a ler o documento emitido ontem pela ANICT em relação ao encontro entre a ANICT e a FCT. Nesse documento fala-se (resposta á pergunta numero 2, paginas 2 e 3) dos famosos 3 expertos que avaluaram todas as candidaturas antes dos paneis, fazendo uma preseleção das mesmas, sendo aquelas com 6 o menos eliminadas
    e por tanto nunca avaluadas pelos paneis. Sin embargo, na pagina 6 do mesmo documento, a direcção da ANICT insiste em que o concurso só teve uma fase. Gostaria se alguem da ANICT
    pode-se aclarar isto. Obrigado

  17. Isaac Vidana December 6, 2013 at 12:24 pm

    Acho tambem “curioso” que nese mesmo documento a FCT diz, e cito textualmente

    “FCT stated before that there will be priority areas of research. Therefore, not every area will be
    treated equally”

    mas nas bases do concurso não se fala de nenhuma area prioritaria. Gostaria saber quales
    são estas areas, aunque començo a fazer uma idea das mesmas.

    • iacopo December 6, 2013 at 2:34 pm

      It’s easy: no mention at all was made by FCT about priority areas (at least, this issue was not included among the listed criteria to evaluate the “excellence” of a candidate and corresponding proposal). Even if it was, which areas were considered priority should have been explicitly indicated in advance, otherwise it would be even too easy to understand that this was a further way to select proposal independently of any claimed “excellence” criterion. Overall, given the extremely large importance of such information, why not telling them immediately, but apparently only after specific requests? Ah, I know: informatic problems with the platform…
      Furthermore, hard to understand how three people only could objectively and thorougly evaluate in advance 1400 candidates and proposals from very different and wide areas. It would be, on average, more than 6 every day, including sundays and public holidays, starting the day after the closing of applications and finishing right on 22 November (what would not have left time to the true evaluation panel to evaluate the selected applications: thus, a much much larger daily/person average!!)… Ah, I know this as well: they are incredibly skilled throughout space physics, marine ecology and materials engineering, and lacking any other commitment…

      • Isaac Vidana December 6, 2013 at 3:06 pm

        Of course they can evaluate 1400 candidates from different areas of research, do not forget that these 3 persons are “expects” and consequently they know “everything”, a part of having, as you say an incredibly capacity of working even on Sunday …

      • nunofazevedo December 6, 2013 at 4:12 pm

        Again, I am expressing a personal opinion eventhough I belong to ANICT direction.

        There is no mention anywhere that all proposals were reviewed by the same 3 reviewers – all that it was said was that each proposal was evaluated by 3 reviewers, which were obviously selected according to their area of expertise and different for each type of proposal. For me, it was a huge improvement over last year that the foreign evaluators got to evaluate all proposals and that there was not a pre-selection phase performed by national researchers.

        We can argue if the reviewers are actually experts, but for that we need to know who they are. In fact, the disclosure of the evaluator panel is in my opinion a more fair point to raise, but bear in mind that in international calls, such as the ones from ERC or the EC, you never know who has evaluated you. But given the levels of distrust on FCT, this should probably be considered.

        A final note: I understand that it is very frustating to be left out of a call without even having the evaluation reports. However, it is crucial that this “anger” does not lead us to question pretty much everything in the call without confirming our observations. We should focus on things that have factually gone wrong, such as the lack of access to the evaluation reports, or that are not clear, such has the eventual disclosure of expert names or even the priority areas of research. Otherwise it will be just a blame game with lots of counter information that will lead nowhere.

      • iacopo December 6, 2013 at 4:31 pm

        nunofazevedo, ok, I might have misunderstood something as I commented just on what Isaac said, without having the famous ANICT document. Once again, maybe it would be worth posting it in this website (unless it has some restricted access for any reason) so that everybody could see what is exactly there and how good FCT was to climb on the glass.

  18. Isaac Vidana December 6, 2013 at 4:32 pm

    In any case it would be good to know who are these 3 reviewers (per proposal). By the way in the Press release of the ANICT is is said (beginning of page 3)

    “. All applications were peer-reviewed by 3 external referees, being 1 Portuguese
    and 2 foreigners with expertise in the field of the proposal (similar to the
    scientific paper peer-reviewing system).

    · Only the applications with score equal or above 7 were then discussed by the
    evaluation panels, taking in consideration the external reviewers reports. The
    evaluation panel ranked the applications as exceptional (9), outstanding (8) or
    excellent (7). The number of successful applicants was related with available
    funding.”

    Do you still say that this is not a pre-selection ?.

    Regarding the expertise of the panel. I can at least tell you that none of the 10 members
    is an expert on my research field. Maybe the FCT chose the experts only on the priority
    lines, which by the way never where mentioned in the basis of the concourse. You can argue
    that this is my personal case, it’s true, but I’m pretty sure that I’m not the only one that have probably been reviewed by someone having a questionable expertise in the corresponding field.

    I’m quite sorry of disagree with you, but honestly I do not see any improvement with respect
    to the previous year. As I said before, FCT has lost a chance of correcting many of the
    mistakes made last year. And I’m sure it will also lose this chance next year unless
    something change.

    • iacopo December 6, 2013 at 4:48 pm

      strange… I have read somewhere a “clarification” by FCT stating that this time they have opted for a one-step evaluation procedure. In an attempt to support the indefensible they easily contradict themselves, I’m really astonished that anyone could actually agree (or just find something positive) with them

    • nunofazevedo December 7, 2013 at 12:39 am

      Hi Isaac,

      The points that you are raising now are indeed greyer areas. Notice in the top that what I said was that “there was not a pre-selection phase performed by national researchers”. What I meant by this was that, even if we consider it as being a pre-selection phase (an issue on which I have changed my opinion a couple of times and as such at the moment I prefer not to express an opinion), this was performed by an international panel containing a majority of foreign researchers. When we compare this to last year, where from what I understood the pre-selection was performed solely (or at least mainly) by national researchers, this is for me an improvement.

      Concerning the expertise of the panel, I have to admit that I haven’t checked their names nor expertises, but the majority of the people I have spoken to has not raised the issue of them not being world-class researchers. As you mention, it is possible or even likely that certain areas were not well addressed in the panel, but that is a different question (and again, a more contencious point). Would it be possible to address all areas equally with 10 members? If not, should we increase the panel? Maybe more than 10 members is too much (and possibly too expensive), so that is why I agree that their decisions should be supported by the external reviewers – eventhough I think this has to be made clear in the next call from the start, including if the panel has the autonomy to decide not to evaluate certain proposals based on the reviewers comments.

      In short, I still maintain that the evaluation was better than last year, but obviously the release of the results was not, and that is why I prefer to focus my attention on the evaluation release. I also think that you should certainly pursue all the channels that you have to make sure that your evaluation was fair.

      • Isaac Vidana December 7, 2013 at 10:22 am

        Hi Nuno

        I think we all agree that the main issue is the lack of clarity in all the process, and even
        the contradictory information provided by the FCT. It’s important to note that it is
        not the same that the 3 external experts (by the way one of them still national) filter
        first all the candidatures before the panel evaluate only the ones that pass the filter
        than first panel evaluates all the candidatures and then the 3 experts confirm the
        decision of the panel. This two procedures simply do not commute. In the first
        case most of the people could never have the chance of being evaluated by the panel.
        With respect to the number of members of the panel, I can tell you that for instance
        in Spain, the program Ramon y Cajal, that has been working for more than 10 years have
        more than 10 members per area, I mean, more than 10 for Life Sciences, more than
        10 for Physics, etc … It’s true that it’s more expensive, but at least people have some
        guarantee on their evaluation. And by the way there is no pre-selection procedure.

        Have a nice weekend

        Isaac

      • iacopo December 7, 2013 at 1:14 pm

        You have expressed the key point: lack of clarity and contradiction is where you get into in any situation of life when you hide something or lie. Concerning the pre-selection by two unknown international and one national experts, it might be seen as a considerable improvement. However, if a play football I could be pretty happy if just one referee is corrupted instead of the previous three, but this does not mean that the result of the match will be fair. Rather, it will be quite likely that it will not. I don’t mean this is exactly the same case, but it would give an idea. Further strange that we can know the composition of one evaluation panel, but not of the other

      • nunofazevedo December 8, 2013 at 9:20 pm

        I will try to have a look at the Ramon y Cajal program regulations when I have the time. It might be an idea to suggest an increase of the size of the panel for the next call, but I guess FCT will decide based on the cost/benefit perceived. An entire reorganization of the evaluation procedure might be a bit harder to get, but if everyone is so unimpressed by the current evaluation scheme than it might be a thing to consider.

        The other thing that seems to be causing a lot of confusion on everyone is the presence of one national evaluator. I want to believe that as the science in Portugal matures the bias that has so many times been observed in national evaluators will start to dissipate. I like to think that if or when I evaluate a national call I will do an independent assessment, as most of the people I know are starting to do (I don’t know your opinion, but for me the evaluations of PhD or Pos-doc grants have been much better in the last couple of years – before they were based on single sentences…). Clearly, it’s still too soon to rely only on national evaluators (and maybe this day will never arrive), but I have been defending that if the foreign evaluators are in a majority then we can feel pretty confident on the final result. Would you say that a national evaluator out of three should be completely out of question?

      • iacopo December 8, 2013 at 10:10 pm

        No problem with national evaluators, but why not knowing who he/she/they are? Still comparing with football, if matches were ruled by an anonymous referee, then you get a penalty against and they do not even tell you why, you could still say that when results were decided even without playing it was much worse, but still…

  19. Isaac Vidana December 6, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    Unfortunately (for us) in the document of the press release, at the beginning (page 2) it is said:

    “Foreword statement: The following questions were adapted from ANICT members contributions
    sent until the established deadline. While many members were succinct in their queries, a few
    were a bit vague. We hope we were able to duly interpret the main idea raised. Some questions
    were very similar and therefore a joint question was derived. We divided the questions raised by
    awareness level: some were asked directly to FCT; others were answered by the ANICT direction;
    finally a few were already available in the public documents released by FCT, and therefore were
    not considered for the ANICT-FCT meeting. The following text expresses the interpretations of
    ANICT direction obtained during the ANICT-FCT meeting and should not be considered binding.
    Only documents produced by FCT should be considered officially binding documentation.”

    That is the FCT answers to the different questions made cannot be considered binding.

    • nunocerca December 6, 2013 at 6:28 pm

      Isaac, ANICT does not represent FCT, ANICT represents its members. The document produced aimed to explain our members the questions they asked. In the past, we have been able to provide quick questions, that otherwise would take longer to obtain. As João wrote, If you want a legal binding answer from FCT, you need to contact FCT.

      • iacopo December 6, 2013 at 6:43 pm

        exactly! This is why ANICT can not likely question too strongly the validity of this clearly unfair procedure, as otherwise it would risk to damage its members (including some from the direction board, I guess) who, instead, have got the present contract. Right? No blame on anyone, these would be understandable issues, as ANICT should logically protect the interests of all

      • Isaac Vidana December 6, 2013 at 7:22 pm

        Nuno, I never said that. I just copy literally what was said by ANICT in the press release which
        according to the document (correct me if I’m wrong) was the interpretation of FCT answers.
        By the way I would like to have legal binding answer from FCT, but I would like more to read
        the evaluation they made which unfortunately for some “technical problems” is not still
        available.

      • iacopo December 6, 2013 at 10:07 pm

        Would you like to guess that these “technical problems” will magically be solved immediately before Christmas or during Christmas holidays, when a number of logistic problems will make further difficult to react?

  20. Jose M. Fedriani December 7, 2013 at 12:58 pm

    Dear all,
    I am sorry if my comment is out of the main topic. I have been selected for one of the FCT contracts. My current position ends at June 2014. Eventhoug I would be happy to sign the contract inmediately, I would like start my activity under the new FCT position after June 2014. However, it seems that the criteria of FCT is that it is not possible .

    Do you have any information about this? Are there any particular circustances under which this criteria would be more flexible?
    Very grateful,
    Jose

    • nunocerca December 7, 2013 at 3:13 pm

      Jose, this issue has to do with the “Lei dos Compromissos”; All positions opened in 2013 need to be filled in 2013; otherwise, that position is lost. This means that the money that the Portuguese government (and in some situations co-funded by EU) commited it self to hire researchers this year cannot migrate to 2014.

  21. Jose M. Fedriani December 7, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    Nunocerca,
    Yeah, thank you. Note that for to quit my current job I need to tell my employers at least two months ahead, otherwise I am breaking rules of the contract I signed and I can be punished. This sort of rules is known and (apparently) accepted by the FCT. That means that FCT can be at least a bit flexible.

    Is there any rule in the FCT call that commit them to give a REASONABLE time interval before start the contract, expecially for people who is currently abroad far away? Notice that I am not talking abou signing it.
    Do you any way I could try to get a time extention to start at FCT?
    Grateful, Jose

    • nunocerca December 7, 2013 at 4:04 pm

      Jose, as you know, ANICT is made of volunteers, and we do not possess the law skills of an expert Legal office. However, what I can share with you is that on the past, many of our members had new job offers (outside Portugal) and had to start with a few weeks notice, and they did not had any problem with the previous host institution. They did ask us for help, and if my memory does not fails me, there is a loophole in the Portuguese Law, that says something like “except if there is common agreement between the 2 parts”, meaning that that rule is not strict, if you and your host institution agree with a shorter period of notice.

    • iacopo December 7, 2013 at 10:22 pm

      Regarding your present institution, I don’t know. For all the others with current FCT contracts, the solution will likely be to prepare now a letter dating back to last October, where they declare their intention to quit their current contract next December. This is obviously a way of going around the law, but perfectly matching the “FCT way” (however, just kidding compared to all the rest…). Eventually, should they wonder why this letter was not submitted earlier, there will still be the explanation that it was due to a trouble with the electronic platform.

  22. Jose M. Fedriani December 7, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    Nunocerca, yes, i am already aware about your altruistic character and thus I am expecially grateful about your assistance. I will ask flexibilty in my current institution though they may ask a similar treatment from the other side as well.
    Thanks again!

  23. Isaac Vidana December 7, 2013 at 5:35 pm

    I would like to share a reflection that regards all this urgency in signing the contract because of
    budget constraints, and my lost of confidence on the FCT. Just imagine that tomorrow we finally
    can read the evaluations. Then according to the rules of the concourse we’ll have 10 days to make all possible reclamations. That means that the dead line for reclamations will be around Dec. 18 (or after). If many of us make a reclamation, that will give the panels (or the experts) only about 13 days (or less) to revaluate and eventually reconsider their decision of financing some additional people. My question is then, when this rescued people is supposed to sign the contracts if the contracts should be signed before Dec. 31 ?. Unless of course, “new and hidden” rules are applied in these cases and the rescued people can sign their contracts in 2014. In conclusion, I have very low confidence on the reclamation process, and on the FCT in general.

  24. nunofazevedo December 8, 2013 at 9:25 pm

    A ANICT é uma sociedade aberta e aceita as críticas que lhe possam ser apontadas. Ao contrário de outras organizações, a ANICT reflete-se numa atitude construtiva e de transparência perante os seus parceiros sociais, e o nosso registo de atividades e objetivos cumpridos refletem o contributo
    dado pela ANICT não só para os seus associados, como para todos os jovens investigadores. A ANICT cresce com todas as críticas construtivas que recebe. Contudo, a ANICT não vai fomentar discussões com pessoas que usam o anonimato para exprimir de forma insultuosa o seu desacordo com as posições da associação, e como tal esse tipo de comentários não será validado pela ANICT e consequentemente não aparecerão neste forum.

    • iacopo December 8, 2013 at 11:09 pm

      You are right, and I appreciate your efforts. However, I can not accept an ANICT declaration, after the meeting with FCT, saying: “…Foi possível esclarecer todas as questões tendo ficado claro que o processo de avaliação decorreu de acordo com o regulamento do concurso”, as this is clearly not true. We have been informed that the procedure was different than officially established for a number of “small” details, while the true evaluation criteria are still waiting to be explained… Just a frank remind, I also condemn any insulting, but I can somehow undertsand if someone might feel like his/her intelligence is actually being insulted and might react badly

      • Franklin December 9, 2013 at 7:32 am

        Instead of wasting the precious time of thousands of researchers across the world in preparing application, FCT could directly offer the positions to the institutions (Assoc Labs, Excell centres etc ) and area of their priority (FCT only knows) as done in Ciencia 2007, 2008. These institutions could conduct the competition and prepare the career development plan of the candidates in the particular area. Eliminating candidates using proxies (I mean national experts) in a so called “International Call” would definitely touch the self esteem of scientists, when the evaluation is not properly done. It is my honest opinion that no one has the right to comment on someones ability without proper evaluation by experts in the particular area of research.

      • nunocerca December 9, 2013 at 12:27 pm

        Iacopo, please see my comment (bellow) to Isaac: its clear to me that there is still some confusion to the issues of the evaluation pannel and the external mail reviewers. Furthermore, ANICT statement is regarding to all the questions posed by our members, in a survey we prepared to that effect; surelly there could be more questions to be made, but our commitement was to our members and their questions…

  25. Isaac Vidana December 8, 2013 at 10:16 pm

    The problem Nuno is not whether one the external experts is Portuguese or not. I honestly do not care of his nationality. I just remarked this point because I read several times that these 3 experts were international, when in fact one of then was not. Just another example of unclear information. But as I said, I do not care on the nationality of the experts, really. The point is, as I said before, the lack of clear information from FCT in all this process. People is essentially angry not just because we (I include myself) haven’t got the position but mainly because of the way FCT is dealing with all this. If everything had been clear from the beginning (including the question of the pre-selection by somebody) people would of course angry with the results and possibly
    discussing the procedure but with a different attitude with respect to FCT, which is now losing
    the confidence of people. Sorry if I repeat myself, but, I insist, FCT has lost again the chance
    of correcting the mistakes of 2012 and I’m quite pessimistic that it will make the same mistakes
    next year if things do not change.

    • iacopo December 8, 2013 at 10:51 pm

      I agree, with the small exception that a mistake would be to wrongly type a mark instead of another for somebody. Stating a posteriori that the evaluation was done differently than officially declared at the beginning of the process sounds quite different. If you add the refusal by FCT to explain the criteria really used to decide on the excellence of some candidates over others (as far as I have heard from colleagues, these are obscure even within the same institution, team and research area…), “angry” would not even be the right word! Unbelievable that anyone could not agree (or could just sweeten) on this. In my opinion, if it is found out, such as it is the case here, that a competion was not done under the established rules (as declared, without any doubt), no need for a genius or interpretations to understand that it was, in the best case, unfair.

    • nunocerca December 9, 2013 at 12:21 pm

      Isaac, maybe I’m confused, but I tought that the references to “international” were based only regarding to the evaluation pannel; that is not the same as the mail reviewers. These are two different things; can you clariry where you read the information you mentioned? In fact, there is not much said about the mail external reviewers, just that each application was going to be evaluated by at least 2 external reviewers…

      • Isaac Vidana December 9, 2013 at 12:43 pm

        Nuno, I read it in the document that the ANICT sent to its members after the meeting with the FCT. I copy here again the part of that document (page 3) where it is clearly said that
        one of the 3 external menbers is Portuguese

        . All applications were peer-reviewed by 3 external referees, being 1 Portuguese
        and 2 foreigners with expertise in the field of the proposal (similar to the
        scientific paper peer-reviewing system).

        · Only the applications with score equal or above 7 were then discussed by the
        evaluation panels, taking in consideration the external reviewers reports. The
        evaluation panel ranked the applications as exceptional (9), outstanding (8) or
        excellent (7). The number of successful applicants was related with available
        funding.”

        It’s curios that you did not know that being not only member of the FCT but one of
        the Vice-Presidents

      • nunocerca December 9, 2013 at 1:24 pm

        Isaac, when you wrote FCT you ment ANICT right? 🙂 Anyways, once again, it seams there is some confusion:

        The external peer-reviewers (mail referees) were 2 foreigners and 1 portuguese. On the FCT documentation, there is nothing stated about the nationality of the peer-reviewers.

        Imagine you are submitting a paper: the peer-reviewers will assess the scientific issues on the paper, and issue a opinion (score). Then, it’s the editor job to make a decision. Comming back to the IF call, the “editor job” was allocated to the international pannel (that is not the same as the peer-reviewers)

      • iacopo December 9, 2013 at 3:00 pm

        This is a peer-review where thousands of submissions are collected at the same time and evaluated comparatively by a pre-formed panel rather than reviewers specifically selected according to the topic under examination. Then you get your paper rejected but they refuse (well, not exactly, it is due to a technical problem: if you could have visited FCT during the last week, for sure you could have seen there technicians desperately working with laptops, screwdrivers, testers…) to tell you why. If they were fair, every day since the 26th November (13 days ago!!) they would have published an update on the progress of the restoration. Instead, as time passes by the impression that the problem will be over only once too late to react or once they could finally come out with the most defensible document (a time-consuming task, of course) gets stronger and stronger

  26. iacopo December 9, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    ok, Nuno. you can agree that some confusion is not surprising as everything looks like being made to be like the skin of one’s balls: you can lift it up in any direction and it will follow… Even worse given the lack of any true information on the evaluation procedure as so far we are still asked to believe that everything was fair, but no proof of that. Of course, I would more easily trust if I was selected and not rejected as my proposal was “ranked lower than 8″ (weird limit, mentioned for the first time in that message)”, as communicated in a message sent a few hours after the communication about the eligibility of my proposal due to the fact that the first message was by FCT and the second by the Evaluation Panel (whatever). Unfortunately, both messages had basically the same signature by FCT’s “Conselho Directivo”… Again, everything smells bad and looks like having being perfumed (and still working on that as it might be a hard work) a posteriori.

    • Isaac Vidana December 9, 2013 at 2:45 pm

      Dear Nuno, I consider myself a person that use to say things clearly always, so each time I wrote FCT I really meant FCT, and each time I wrote ANICT, I meant ANICT. I have “some
      “experience with papers as an author and as a referee, so please do not try to convince me or the others that this is the same, because it is not. The difference is simply that when you sent a paper you know that there will be a referee or referees but this seems not to be the case with the FCT (and I mean FCT).

    • Isaac Vidana December 9, 2013 at 2:49 pm

      As Hamlet would have say “Something is rotten in the state of Denmark” … or better in the state of FCT

  27. Isaac Vidana December 9, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    Sorry, It’s true … I apologise for that ….

  28. iacopo December 9, 2013 at 3:06 pm

    FCT, in Italian: “Fatti i cazzi tuoi!” (Make your own business!). It’s perfect…

  29. Isaac Vidana December 9, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    It seems that web site of the concourse has now really “technical problems”. When you try to enter you get a nice error message

    “Forbidden

    You don’t have permission to access / on this server.”

    I have the impression that very soon we’ll access to the evaluations ….

  30. iacopo December 9, 2013 at 7:39 pm

    We are becoming literary characters: those who are happy to get an error message… The end is near.

  31. Isaac Vidana December 9, 2013 at 8:17 pm

    Everything is so absurd with all this that I prefer to laugh than to cry

  32. Franklin December 10, 2013 at 8:27 pm

    FCT sent me the comments and scores of only 2 external reviewers both of them awarded points that would allow me to get the position. However, the overall score awarded by the panel is only 6, which is 2 points less than the reviewers awarded. Do you have any idea? Note: The comments and score of Portuguese reviewer who assisted the panel ranking is missing.

    The comments of the evaluation panel reads as follows.
    This evaluation report contains the final score awarded by the review panel. The discussion of the panel was conducted within the context of the reports submitted by the external reviewers. The panel closely analyzed these reviews and, “while not necessarily subscribing to each and every opinion expressed, found that they provide a fair overall assessment”. Based on these reviews, the panel judged that this application did not reach high enough priority to be funded in the present call.

    Hope you can understand how the internal reviewer must have assisted the panel ranking. God bless you.

  33. Isaac Vidana December 10, 2013 at 8:49 pm

    In my case I got the 3 reviewers, all of them above 6 which thanks to the magics of some kind of curious mathematics (for sure not the one I was taught) became in an overall vote of 6. The most funny think is that one of the reviewers gave me almost 9.

    • iacopo December 10, 2013 at 10:04 pm

      I did not get any scores as given by the pre-selection panel. I have only got a score of 7 by the last evaluation panel as my proposal “did not include details suitable to readily assess the feasibility of the proposal”. Two funded projects running and about 10 published papers (both in specialistic and more broadly-based journals and specifically mentioned as reference), on the same topic and including similar procedures were clearly not enough to consider it feasible… bad luck, but it was obvious that this was the main criterion to assess the “excellence” of an application

  34. Isaac Vidana December 10, 2013 at 10:15 pm

    It is interesting to see that evaluation seems to be person-dependent. The cherry on the cake.

    • Dudal December 11, 2013 at 9:27 am

      One of my reviewers was not able to read part of my application because I was not supposed to put my texts (containing some formulae) in a pdf in the “Supporting Materials”. Hence, the minimum score was attributed to these parts of the application. Strangely, the two other Reviewers did not complain about missing pieces and their score was >7…

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