Consortium development in Horizon 2020 training

The ttopstart academy was invited to Helsinki by UniPID and the FinCEAL Plus project to provide training to 40 researchers in developing competitive consortia for Horizon 2020. The training was also offered as a webcast to 100 participants. Given the positive response of the audience, we would like to take this opportunity to thank UniPID and FinCEAL for their invitation and share with you some of the key points discussed during this training session.

On October 27 and 28, UniPID (the Finnish University Partnership for International Development) and the FinCEAL Plus project (Developing Finnish Science, Technology and Innovation Cooperation between Europe, Africa, Asia and the LAC Region) organised a two-day seminar to discuss the opportunities and challenges related to cooperation between universities, businesses and other stakeholders in joint global projects. As part of this event, the ttopstart academy hosted a one-day training session focused on writing successful proposals for Pillar 3 (Societal Challenges) of Horizon 2020, especially in light of international cooperation and working with partners from developing countries.

Programme of the training:

Trainers: Patrick de Boer, MSc and Karlijn Bastiaansen, PhD

The interactive training focused on developing competitive research consortia for Horizon 2020. The morning session discussed the most important characteristics of strong research consortia and provided the attendees with ready-to-use strategies to assemble their own research consortium. We also showed how to identify important stakeholders and how to attract complementary partners, such as industry and NGOs.

In the afternoon session the attendees worked on two case studies in which a Horizon 2020 call was analysed and interpreted by small project teams. The teams were asked to assemble a competitive consortium and a prepare a pitch for the Horizon 2020 jury. The training ended with a Horizon 2020 quiz to assess the extent of knowledge acquired from the programme.

Key take-home messages of the training:

  • A good process is crucial for success
  • Have a strategy for joining and forming consortia
  • Perform a gap analysis of partners to determine the expertise you are missing
  • Always seek complementary partners
  • Focus on something that will yield impact for the EU (e.g. financial, societal, environmental, technical, educational)
  • Have a clear strategy for exploitation and dissemination
  • Horizon 2020 is open to the world, but make sure your non-EU partners have a clear role and added value

Participant quotes:

“We were very happy with how ttopstart trainers customized the content of the training according to our needs. Communication prior to the training was positive and responsive, and they were very professional in the delivery. We would definitely recommend them to others.” (UniPID – Finnish University Partnership for International Development)

Do you want to learn more about consortium development for Horizon 2020 projects? Please contact Patrick to discuss the possibilities.