In the exceptional context of the Covid-19 outbreak, the closing date

of this call for projects is postponed to May 3rd, 2020

The Interdisciplinary and Strategic Research Initiative (IRIS) Origins and conditions for the emergence of life of PSL University announces its fifth call for projects.

The question of the conditions for the emergence or presence of life in the universe is moving from the speculative field to that of the so-called “hard” sciences. This revolution affects all scientific fields, from astronomy and astrophysics (with the discovery of extrasolar planets and a better knowledge of the solar system), to physico-chemistry and biology (with progress on the knowledge of the prebiotic world, the emergence of living matter, and the key stages of evolution) and geophysics (with a better knowledge of the Earth’s cycle). This is accompanied by an investigation on the way human societies conceive the frontiers between the living and the non-living and develop ways of better understanding a phenomenon such as life.

Thanks to IRIS OCAV, PSL University contributes to this theme along three lines of investigation:

  • Conditions for the emergence of life in the solar system and beyond
  • Emergence of living matter and key stages of evolution
  • Cultural variations in conceptions of life and their artistic representations

The aim of this call for projects is to encourage the emergence of innovative projects and actions around these three axes, which may take five forms:

  • Doctoral contract
  • Postdoctoral contract
  • Team environment (up to a maximum of 8,000 € for travel, small equipment, organization of a workshop, etc.)
  • Visiting professorships (may last for between two weeks and two months)
  • Support for the acquisition of an equipment (up to a maximum of 50 000 €)

This call is addressed to all researchers and faculty members working in research laboratories whose principal affiliation is to one of the members of PSL University (excluding EPSTs).

The submitted projects must be ambitious in nature and bring together activities of a very high level, ideally beyond the traditional thematic fields, while emphasizing the unique nature of the research carried out at PSL University. Proposals that allow for the amplification or federation of ongoing actions around new themes will be particularly encouraged. The funded actions are listed on the project website (

Since 2019, the institutions have committed to a financial participation of about 15% of the amount awarded by IRIS OCAV. The amount and the nature of this participation must be specified in the “budget” section of the application form and validated by the legal representative of the institution.

Provisional timeline (updated on April 1st, 2020)

  • Deadline for the submission of projects: May 3rd, 2020
  • Audition of candidates to a doctoral contract: May 2020
  • Selection Committee Meeting: May 2020
  • Publication of results: end of May 2020

Any reply to this call will take the form of the attached file, duly completed. This file should be sent, in electronic format, to Any requests for further information should be addressed to

Download the .pdf version : Appel à projet IRIS OCAV 2020_v2_en

Submission Template: Dossier_IRISOCAV_2020_v2 (.docx) –Dossier_IRISOCAV_2020_v2 (.pdf)