Project funding is an increasingly important mode of research funding. The rationale is that through project funding new fields and new themes can be supported more effectively. Furthermore, project funding improves competition, which is expected to select the better research projects and researchers. However, project funding has a price, as it requires researchers to invest time in reviewing proposals, and to participate in selection committees. In that perspective, selection committee membership can be seen as a service to the scholarly community. However, what do committee members themselves get from membership? In this paper we show that committee members in average are more successful in grant applications than other principle investigators, and this is not explained by performance differences. The findings suggest that committee membership is not only service, but also self-service. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.