The surveys provide insights into MSCA researchers’ experience, skills acquired and career paths after their fellowship.
All MSCA project participants must complete
- an evaluation questionnaire immediately after the fellowship
- a follow-up questionnaire two years later
Since 2018, a total of nearly 18,000 MSCA fellows have completed the evaluation questionnaire and over 2,000 the follow-up questionnaire.
High satisfaction with host institutions
Responses to the evaluation questionnaire highlight a strong satisfaction overall with host institutions.
This is reflected in the lasting collaborations between researchers and project partners after the MSCA fellowship.
Over one quarter of employed doctoral or postdoctoral fellows worked in one of the institutions involved in their project two years after the end of their fellowship.
Four out of five respondents had maintained some form of collaboration with one of the project partners during that time period as well.
Good training offer and relevant skill development
Overall, fellows report a high satisfaction with the quality of training in MSCA, with nearly 86% of respondents considering the training provided as good or very good.
The skills acquired during the fellowship are highly relevant for fellows in their career afterwards. Two years later, more than 98% of fellows had made use of the skills acquired during the MSCA fellowship in their work.
Nearly two thirds of respondents considered that they had used the skills they developed to a large or very large extent.
Under Horizon Europe, training under MSCA projects will also cover new emerging skills required for research careers, including in open science practices and for the twin green and digital transitions.
Careers after MSCA
Overall, within three months after the end of their MSCA fellowship
- 56% of Innovative Training Networks (ITN), COFUND and IF fellows had already found employment
- 21% were still in education/training
- 14% were unemployed
- 9% were inactive for other reasons (i.e. on parental leave, not looking for employment, etc.)
Two years after, only 4% of fellows were unemployed at the time of completing the follow-up questionnaire.
The majority of former fellows continue to work in academia after their MSCA project.
Among those employed, 72% of ITN, COFUND and IF former fellows were working within academia immediately after the fellowship. Two years after, the figure amounted to 62% of fellows. The share is generally higher among former postdoctoral fellows than doctoral fellows.
Among fellows working outside academia, the main employers immediately after the fellowship were large enterprises and SMEs, with a lower share in other sectors (i.e. international organisations, hospitals, museums, etc.), private non-profit organisations and public administrations / governments.
About the end-of-fellowship questionnaires
The end-of-fellowship questionnaires gather feedback from former MSCA fellows on the impact of the fellowship on their research, skill development and career since the completion of their MSCA project.
They are also one of the programme’s main career tracking tools, collecting information on former fellows’ career paths and mobility since their MSCA fellowship.
Introduced under Horizon 2020, the EU’s research and innovation framework programme for 2014-2020, these questionnaires have complemented other existing tools, such as the Marie Curie Alumni Association’s Major Survey.
A large number of MSCA projects funded under Horizon 2020 have finished recently or are still ongoing. Therefore, the end-of-fellowships surveys continue to gather additional responses. Their results will be analysed and monitored regularly to inform the development of the programme.
In parallel, the questionnaires are currently being revised and adapted for Horizon Europe funded projects, taking into account novelties introduced and new objectives of the MSCA programme.
Results of MSCA end-of-fellowship evaluation questionnaires – 2023 update
File hosted on Publications Office of the European Union
Source: European Commission I Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (https://bit.ly/3lfQPyE)