Here’s a growing list of resources for Horizon 2020. It consists of books, tools and people who can help you in getting started with networking, partnering and a Horizon 2020 proposal. If you miss any resources for Horizon 2020, just leave a response in the form at the bottom of the page.
EU Information sources
The starting point is the official Horizon 2020 website of the EU commission: http://ec.europa.eu/programmes/horizon2020/ . From here you can navigate to all official documentation and background information.
The most important resource is the “Participant Portal”, where you and your organisation have to register before you can even submit a proposal: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/portal/desktop/en/home.html.
The reference section of the Participant Portal also has a collection of the rules and regulations for Horizon 2020: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/portal/desktop/en/funding/reference_docs.html.
The EU funding guide for Horizon 2020, giving an overview of the steps you have to take to get funding: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/docs/h2020-funding-guide/index_en.htm.
Calls and call documents are available at: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/docs/h2020-funding-guide/grants/applying-for-funding/find-a-call_en.htm and at http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/portal/desktop/en/opportunities/h2020/search/search_topics.html.
Call Updates are published at: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/portal/desktop/en/opportunities/h2020/call_updates.html.
The main other EU information website and database is CORDIS, the European Community Research and Development Information Service: http://cordis.europa.eu/home_en.html.
Horizon 2020 rules
The Horizon 2020 rules can be downloaded at the reference documentation centre of the Participant Portal: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/portal/desktop/en/funding/reference_docs.html.
The EU offers a “Financial Viability Self-Check” at https://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/portal/desktop/en/organisations/lfv.html.
The Horizon 2020 grants manual is available at http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/ref/h2020/grants_manual/pse/h2020-guide-pse_en.pdf.
SME partners in Horizon 2020
The EU encourages networks to contain SME’s (Small and Medium sized Enterprises). The EU defines a SME in a specific way. You can access the definition and a self qualification through http://ec.europa.eu/growth/smes/.
Proposals are evaluated according to a public set of criteria, agreed on before the proposals are submitted. The evaluation criteria are declared in the call documents. The evaluation by the reviewers is done through a specific set of evaluation forms. These forms are available at the Participant Portal. Most forms are downloadable at: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/portal/desktop/en/funding/reference_docs.html#h2020-call_ptef-ef , an example evaluation form is: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/ref/h2020/call_ptef/ef/h2020-call-ef-ria-ia-csa_en.pdf.
Other criteria in proposal evaluation are described in the Horizon 2020 Evaluation FAQ available at: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/ref/h2020/grants_manual/pse/h2020-evaluation-faq_en.pdf.
EU Proposal Templates
Before using and submitting a full proposal, I recommend to start with a one-page outline. See One-Page Proposal Template for more information.
Templates for Horizon 2020 proposals are available at the Participant Portal: https://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/portal/desktop/en/funding/reference_docs.html#h2020-call_ptef-pt and the electronic submission system guide: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/support/sep_usermanual.pdf.
Horizon 2020 Project Communication and Dissemination
The EU has written a specific guide on communication for participants, called “Communicating EU research and innovation guidance for project participants”: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/ref/h2020/other/gm/h2020-guide-comm_en.pdf . The guide contains a practical checklist to build your own communication strategy.
Horizon 2020 Consortia
Building a consortium for Horizon 2020 is a key aspect for a successful proposal. I recommend to start with a one-page outline. See One-Page Partnership Template for more information.
“Guidance — How to draw up your consortium agreement” is available at http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/ref/h2020/other/gm/h2020-guide-cons-a_en.pdf.
Additionally the DESCA (Development of a Simplified Consortium Agreement) group has published a model consortium agreement for others to use, available at http://www.desca-2020.eu/ . Other pointers to model consortium agreements are available, for example http://www.ideal-ist.eu/ . The EU has published an annotated model grant agreement, available at http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/ref/h2020/grants_manual/amga/h2020-amga_en.pdf, which weighs in at a hefty 656 pages!
Submitting EU Proposals
Submitting your proposal is mainly about using the EU’s ECAS (successor of the EPSS) system. Basically, all proposals must be submitted electronically. The EU has written comprehensive guides for the submission process: http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/docs/h2020-funding-guide/grants/applying-for-funding/submit-proposals_en.htm and http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/support/sep_usermanual.pdf.
Other resources for Horizon 2020
- A short guide “how to write a successful horizon 2020 proposal in 5 easy steps” as a tool to focus your thinking on Horizon 2020 (thanks to Dr. Eva Loste, UbiK media).
- Fasttrackimpact by Professor Mark Reed has resources and templates to help you planning for and with your project’s impact. You can download these resources for free.
- A video of a talk I gave just at the start of Horizon 2020 in February 2014 in Brussels at Fosdem (with the then current information).