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KoWi-Newsletter on EU Research & Innovation funding
24.06.2024
Dear Mrs. Rouard,

This newsletter features EU research and innovation funding and policy news items. Updates on the European Research Council (ERC) are covered via the separate ERC National Contact Point (NCP) newsletter which is jointly provided by KoWi and the EU Bureau of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).


Sincerely,
the KoWi team
Research policy developments


Tenerife Declaration on sustainability of research infrastructures

Several EU Member States and the European Commission signed a Declaration on the “Global Dimension and Sustainability of Research Infrastructures” on 26 September 2023 during a Spanish EU Presidency event in Tenerife. The so-called Tenerife Declaration aims at finding solutions for challenges faced by Research Infrastructures (RIs), including financing and supplies as well as global collaboration. 

The Declaration calls for national and European actions and adequate funding to further support the long-term sustainability of RIs, including the review of mechanisms to foster synergies of operations and exploring new governance models. 

Another area the Declaration focuses on is to foster career development and skills in order to ensure that RI’s can be adequately staffed, including with a view to the challenges of the digital transition. 
It also calls for advancing the integration of Open Science policies and practices, establishing an assessment of environmental challenges and strengthening resilience of RIs. 

Concerning the role RIs play on a global level, international cooperation is to be enhanced whilst protecting European key principles and values, for example academic freedom and research integrity. Fostering international collaboration could then lead to “Global RIs”.

Finally, the Declaration calls for fostering the role of RIs in advancing science diplomacy.
The Tenerife Declaration follows on from a series of initiatives and declarations by previous EU Presidencies, including the Brno Declaration on Fostering a Global Ecosystem of Research Infrastructures from 2022 and the Lund Declaration on Maximizing the Benefits of Research Data under the Swedish Presidency in 2023.
 
Contact at KoWi:
Inga Benner

Batteries Europe and Battery 2030+ publish R&I Roadmaps
 
Batteries Europe, the European Technology and Innovation Platform on Batteries, and Battery 2030+, the large-scale and long-term European research initiative for batteries, have recently released their Research and Innovation (R&I) Roadmaps which present what is needed to deliver on the promise of creating a competitive battery value chain in Europe.

The Batteries Europe R&I Roadmap offers a detailed view of ongoing plans and requirements to propel the development of the entire battery value chain forward. It defines strategic objectives and provides an overview of the core research areas identified for further exploration by the expert battery research community. It also emphasizes the urgency of bolstering education and skills development to drive research and industry development in battery-related fields.

The Battery 2030+ Roadmap focuses on long-term research directions. It outlines research actions aiming at revolutionising battery technology as part of a European effort to establish battery cell manufacturing. This updated version of the roadmap integrates recent global battery research developments and progress made by current EU-funded projects. 

Both documents will inform the Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA) underpinning the BATT4EU Partnership, which will be published later this year. This SRIA will focus more on which research topics of strategic importance for Europe will be proposed for funding in the next years of Horizon Europe.
 
Contact at KoWi:
Mareike Schmitt

Court of Auditors issues recommendations on use of lump sums

On 5 October 2023, the European Court of Auditors published its annual report on the financial year 2022. 
Every year, the Court audits the revenue and expenditure of the EU budget. Using estimates based on sample audits, the Court determines an "error rate". This is when EU budget has not been used properly due to an incorrect calculation or irregularity, such as the charging of ineligible costs. 

The estimated error rate for the expenditure of the entire 2022 budget is 4.2% and has increased by 1.2% compared to the previous year. The Court of Auditors issues an adverse opinion on the EU’s spending in 2022 as widespread problems were found.

In the budget heading "Single Market, Innovation and Digital", which includes EU research funding, the estimated error rate is 2.7%, a decrease of 1.7% compared to the previous year 2021. The audit focused almost exclusively on Horizon 2020 projects.

In this year's report, the Court paid special attention to the Commission's procedures and guidelines for project funding in the form of lump sums in the area of research. The widespread expansion of this type of funding, the Court states, was not based on a comprehensive evaluation of the previous pilot projects with lump sums, but on surveys. When evaluating the lump sum project proposals, the experts were not provided with clear benchmarks for the appropriateness of the project costs. Furthermore, there is a lack of clear specifications and guidelines for funded projects as to when the requirements for the payment of lump sums for individual work packages have been met.

Accordingly, the Court's recommendations to the Commission are to evaluate lump sum funding in principle and to question the extent to which lump sums are suitable for projects with large budgets. Furthermore, the evaluation of lump sum project applications should be improved. Clear criteria for the disbursement of funding should be communicated to the beneficiaries. The Commission would also have to define the scope of the ex-post checks to be carried out for lump sum projects, whereby risk-prone areas such as compliance with procurement regulations would also have to be checked.
Contact at KoWi:
Yvette Gafinen
Events

KoWi: Online seminar on project management in Horizon Europe

KoWi is organising an online seminar on project management in Horizon Europe on 24 and 26 October 2023 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

At this event, we will present the basic rules of administrative and financial project management of Horizon Europe. We will dive into the most important contractual documents (such as the Grant Agreement and the Consortium Agreement), explain cost calculation and reimbursement in the different funding schemes and provide information on other relevant aspects such as project audits or the exploitation of project results.

The event consists of two parts that build on each other. We therefore recommend attending both days.

The seminar is particularly aimed at beginners, but is also open to more experienced participants who would like to refresh their project management knowledge. The event is held in German.
 
Contact at KoWi:
Yvette Gafinen

Registrations still open – Online Information events on MSCA COFUND and Staff Exchanges (SE)

KoWi is offering two online information events on the MSCA COFUND and Staff Exchanges (SE) following the call openings. Registrations are still open. The events will take place online and in English.

MSCA COFUND: 17 October 2023, 14:00 pm - 15:30 pm

The event is aimed at scientists and research administrators interested in applying for COFUND funding. A project manager will share her experiences with a successful COFUND programme. In addition, a speaker from the European Commission will give an overview on the current call.

MSCA Staff Exchanges: 18 October 2023, 10:00 am - 13:00 pm

The webinar aimed at scientists from German institutions who are interested in applying for SE funding as well as research administrators who are responsible for the implementation of SE programs at their institutions. The event offers a concise overview of the funding line as well as explanations on application structure, submission and project management. It will be rounded off by a report from a successful applicant.
 

EURESTMA programme: new application round for research and transfer managers

The EURESTMA certificate is a new programme for European research and transfer managers. The programme is organised by an alliance of leading academic partners who provide up-to-date knowledge on research and transfer management in a European context. The overall objective is to contribute to the professionalisation of European research and transfer management and to establish an active international community of research and transfer managers.

 

The training follows a blended learning format, including self-study and two on-site weeks. EURESTMA is a comprehensive research and transfer management programme that comprises six modules taught on-site for two weeks. Furthermore a “Project Action Plan” is also foreseen in which each participant carries out a “change project” at the respective home institution under the guidance of experts.

 

The first on-site week (19-23 February 2024) will take place at the Osnabrück University of Applied Sciences in Germany, the second on-site week (17-21 June 2024) will be hosted by KoWi’s Brussels office in Belgium.

 

Interested parties can apply for the programme until 2 November 2023.
 

EIC T2M Business Idea Validation Bootcamp: online training for developing business models

Interested researchers from EIC Pathfinder, EIC Transition and EIC Seal of Excellence projects can register until 20 October 2023 for the T2M Business Idea Validation Bootcamp of the European Innovation Council (EIC). This free online event is organised by EIC's Business Acceleration Services (BAS) and is part of a comprehensive training programme named the EIC Tech to Market Programme (EIC T2M).

 

The T2M Business Validation Programme uses „Design Thinking“ methods to support the creation and verification of business models. In this context the respective business ideas are developed further step by step as well as constantly aligned with current market needs. Furthermore, the training also offers concrete opportunities to test the market readiness of business models based on feedback from experts, investors and potential consumers.

 

The training begins on 7 November 2023 and it lasts for a period of 4 weeks, requiring a workload of 8 to 12 hours per week. The following additional subject areas are planned as well among the individual training modules:

Introduction to Design Thinking Methodology
Business Model Design and Business Model Canvas
Business Idea and Planning
Business Idea Validation
Impactful pitching for fundraising and business development
Access to funding for early-stage businesses

The event is suitable for individual scientists as well as for several team members of a project. However, the latter should reflect complementary team roles during the programme, for example by involving team members responsible for technology related issues of the project together with representatives for entrepreneurial approaches.

 

A mandatory participation requirement for all interested researchers is their contribution regarding two surveys which are staggered in time. A first survey is carried out immediately after the workshop (1. "short quality survey"). Six months later answers to a further survey (2. "impact survey") have to be submitted.
 
Contact at KoWi:
Cristina Condovici
Vacancies


Current vacancies in research and administration
Please find new job offers under the following link:

University Assistant Prae Doc, Universität Wien
University assistant predoctoral, Universität Wien
Universitätsassistent*in Postdoc, Universität Wien
Postdoc (w/m/d) mit dem Schwerpunkt Unterrichtsforschung in der Begabtenförderung, Universität Tübingen
Wissenschaftliche/r Mitarbeiter/in zur Promotion mit dem Schwerpunkt Talententwicklung in der Sekundarstufe, Hector-Institut für Empirische Bildungsforschung, Tübingen
PhD researcher (f/m/d) on the behavioral design of policy interventions for the rewetting of peatlands, Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research, Müncheberg
Wissenschaftliche*r Mitarbeiter*in Wissenschaftskommunikation Naturwissenschaften, TH Köln
Plasma Science and Technology, Greifswald
Projektkoordination (w/m/d) Einführung eines Forschungsinformationssystems (FIS) und Forschungsdatenmanagements (FDM), Westfälische Hochschule, Gelsenkirchen
Referent*in Internationale Forschungsförderung (m/w/d), Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main
Referent/in Open Data – Open Data Beauftragte/r in der Stabsstelle Forschungsstrategie und –koordination (w/m/d), Bundesinstitut für Risikobewertung, Berlin
Senior Data Protection and Privacy Specialist, Luxembourg National Data Service
Data Protection and Privacy Specialist, Luxembourg National Data Service
Project Manager (f/m/x) for the implementation of the project InHand@UFZ to improve risk management in international scientific collaborations, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research, Leipzig
Advisor for third-party funding applications (f/m/d), Technische Universität Braunschweig
Project and dissemination manager (f/m/d), Technische Universität Braunschweig
EU-Forschungsreferent*in (w/m/d), Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, Freiburg
Berlin Mathematical School PhD program, Berlin Mathematical School
Wiss. Mitarbeiter:in im Projekt Digitale Hochschulbildung Sachsen (m/w/d), TU Dresden
Referent*in im Bereich Wissenschaftsadministration, Schwerpunkt Drittmittelkoordination (m/w/d) in Teilzeit, Max-Planck-Institut für Biophysik, Frankfurt am Main
Researcher (m/f/d) MSc or PhD in Ecosystem Modelling, Senckenberg Gesellschaft für Naturforschung, Frankfurt

Feel free to use our service to publish your “Expression of Interest” for participating in a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action placed in Germany. The "Expression of Interest" can be found here:
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