Our competitive process

Annual work plan with call topics

EU funding to EDCTP projects is based on the annual work plans and the EDCTP2 Strategic Business Plan. Each work plan is developed following a comprehensive consultation process involving multiple stakeholders and consultation meetings. The EDCTP2 work plans are approved by both European Commission and the EDCTP Association.

The work plan is the basis of EDCTP2 activities for each year. It provides information on the topics of EDCTP2 calls for proposals that will be launched during the year, including the description of the challenge, scope and expected impact, as well as supporting information about eligibility requirements and other specific conditions for applying.

The work plan also contains an overview of activities in the scope of EDCTP2 that are not funded by the EU, but funded and implemented by one or more of the EDCTP2 Participating States – the so-called Participating States’ Initiated Projects (PSIAs). The PSIAs are considered an integral part of the EDCTP2 programme, not least because they represent in-kind contributions from the Participating States to the EDCTP2 programme.

Proposal preparation and submission

Proposals to EDCTP for funding must be submitted in response to published calls for proposals. An overview and indicative timetable for the publication of calls is provided in the EDCTP2 annual work plan while notifications of individual calls for proposals are given under the Funding section and via the EDCTPgrants system. Each call contains the key information that is needed in order to prepare a proposal, including the eligibility and evaluation criteria.

More information about proposal preparation and submission is available in the EDCTP2 Grants Manual.

Proposal review and approval

Proposals in response to EDCTP calls for proposals are evaluated by independent experts, who are qualified in the scientific and/or technological fields related to the proposal.

In parallel to or immediately following the technical evaluation, independent ethics experts may provide additional reviews to the proposals to ensure they comply with ethical principles and relevant national, EU and international legislation.

While the main focus of the review will be on the ethics dimension, EDCTP will also examine research integrity issues. Cases of scientific misconduct such as fabrication, falsification, plagiarism or misrepresentation of data that may arise during the evaluation or the granting process will be investigated and may result in the exclusion of proposals from evaluation or from the grant preparation process.

EDCTP may invite independent observers to attend any meeting within the peer review evaluation process. These observers are experts who are fully independent of EDCTP and are requested to examine the evaluation process from the point of view of its working and execution. Observers do not assess the proposals under evaluation. They check compliance with the procedures stipulated in the EDCTP2 work plan and with Horizon 2020 and provide EDCTP with independent advice.

The evaluation outcome delivered by the expert reviewers via the consensus evaluation and/or panel review process contain a ranked list of proposals with scores above the qualifying score. This evaluation outcome is approved by the EDCTP Board and/or General Assembly and based on the available budget of the call, proposals are recommended for funding.

Project award

Following formal approval of the evaluation outcome by the EDCTP Board and/or General Assembly, the grant agreement preparation phase is initiated with the successful applicants.

The grant agreement should be signed no later than three months after the receipt of the evaluation outcome letter. There is a deadline for each stage of the grant preparation phase to ensure that the agreement is signed in time.

Signing the grant agreement is the final stage of the grant preparation phase. It confirms formal approval by all parties of the agreement and its annexes. Notifications of signed grants are announced on the EDCTP website and project details can be reviewed in EDCTPs public portal.

Monitoring and grant closure

EDCTP beneficiaries submit reports, comprising technical and financial sections, to EDCTP, usually on an annual basis. These reports and the progress reported therein is reviewed by EDCTP. In addition to this, EDCTP may organise independent oversight committees to help monitor project activities. EDCTP may request external audits and/or organise visits to institutions involved in the projects to evaluate progress and to ensure compliance with EDCTP/H2020 requirements.

These activities are a regular part of EDCTP’s monitoring and evaluation of its projects to ensure proper implementation and compliance with the obligations under the Grant Agreement.

EDCTP expects that grant holders will disclose the summary results of clinical studies within 12 months from primary study completion. Publication in a journal is expected within 24 months from study completion. Each beneficiary must ensure open access to all peer-reviewed scientific publications relating to its results and correct acknowledgement of EDCTP funding.

At the end of the grant, beneficiaries must also submit final technical and financial reports to EDCTP. Once the final reports are approved and the payment of the balance has occurred the grant is closed. Beneficiaries are expected to keep EDCTP updated on any major outcomes of the action following grant closure (i.e., publications, policy documents, etc).