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Competitive and Sustainable Growth

Growth Work Programme 2001-2002
Edition December 2000



Implementation of RTD activities is carried out mainly through the following types of calls for proposals:

Periodic calls

Periodic calls have a fixed deadline and are open for submission of proposals within a defined scope. The scope of each call is defined in the sections "Strategy and priorities for the calls for proposals" of the work programme, and specified in the call published in the Official Journal.

Open calls

Open calls have been launched at the start of the programme for SME Specific Measures (exploratory awards and "CRAFT" co-operative research), Marie Curie Fellowships, accompanying measures and IMS. They remain open until the last year of the Framework Programme, with periodic evaluations (2/3 per year). The open call also invites the submission of Expression of Interests (EoIs) for the Measurement & Testing RTD objectives not covered by the periodic calls (see table C-1) and for the needs of the European research community in Support for Research Infrastructures.

Dedicated calls

Dedicated calls are normally published once or twice a year and are restricted to a number of very specific topics and/or activities with supporting documents available to specify objectives of required activities. At the start of the Programme the Commission has published a call for Expressions of Interest inviting interested parties (including Commission services) to suggest ideas for topics (RTD and infrastructure related needs) in some of the areas to be covered by these calls (see objectives 6 and 7). Dedicated calls published for those objectives are based solely on the results of the periodic evaluations of the Expressions of Interest.

Additional information may be provided at the announcement of a call, in particular on tasks to be launched in relation to Key Action 2.

The indicative timetable and deadlines for the calls are outlined in the "road map" section of this document (section F), and will be specified in each call published in the Official Journal.

Web address for Growth calls for proposals: /growth/src/callmain.htm


The programme is implemented in accordance with the Council Decision of 22 December 1998 concerning the rules for participation and dissemination (Official Journal L26 of 1/2/99, page 46). The main implementation modalities (presented in more detail in the GROWTH Programme Guide for Proposers) are:

RTD, demonstration and combined RTD/demonstration projects

These projects are carried out by industrial or service organisations, universities and research centres and are targeted on strategic objectives with significant potential for socio-economic and industrial impact. They need to respond to the objectives specified in the call, which described in detail in the work programme.

Co-ordination and "Clustering" of such projects is encouraged in order to achieve greater critical mass and impact (see section below "Co-ordination Activities" ).

The integration of socio-economic research in proposals for RTD, demonstration or combined RTD/demonstration projects, is encouraged where appropriate to complement or support technical research.

SME Specific Measures

The programme will implement special measures to facilitate and encourage the participation of SMEs in RTD, demonstration and combined projects that show great potential as regards innovation. These measures consist of Co-operative Research (CRAFT) and Exploratory Awards.

An Exploratory Award is intended to prepare a complete project proposal: either a CRAFT project proposal that is submitted in response to the open call, or an RTD, demonstration or combined project submitted in response to a periodic call.

Co-operative Research proposals and Exploratory Awards proposals aimed at Co-operative Research may fall within the overall objectives of the thematic programme. In other words, they do not have to relate to the specific objectives and priorities of the key actions and generic technologies. As such, these measures allow for a "bottom up" character since proposals may be submitted for the objectives and priorities of the thematic programme in its entirety.

Exploratory Award proposals intended to prepare non-CRAFT projects must address priorities identified in the work programme regarding the periodic call envisaged for the submission of the resulting project proposals. In addition, they must be submitted sufficiently in advance of the closing date of the envisaged periodic call (i.e. at least 9 months between the chosen cut-off date for the submission of the Exploratory Award proposal and the closing date of the periodic call). Non-CRAFT project proposals prepared through Exploratory Awards must conform to the priorities of the periodic call in response to which they are submitted (even if these priorities have changed compared to those on the base of which the Exploratory Award proposals were selected).

The implementation of the SME specific measures follows the common rules established in the horizontal programme "Innovation and the participation of SMEs", in order to ensure transparency for the beneficiaries. These rules include common contractual and proposal evaluation, a single complementary entry point for the reception of proposals for SME specific measures, common rules for eligibility and for scientific and technological evaluation; common legal and financial provisions as well as a harmonised and rapid feedback to applicants.

  • "Co-operative Research" proposals (CRAFT) enable at least three mutually independent SMEs from at least two different Member States, or one Member State and an Associated State, to jointly seek the resolution of their common technological problems by entrusting it to third legal entities (the "RTD performers"), including industrial entities, with appropriate research or technological validation capacities. In the context of Co-operative Research projects, those SME contractors which are able to carry out part of the research work themselves may do so up to 60% of total project costs, leaving the remainder (40% or more) to be executed by the RTD performer. The total cost of Co-operative Research projects may not exceed 2 Meuro, of which the Commission may fund up to 50%. Their maximum duration is 24 months. Co-operative Research projects may include a validation phase.

  • "Exploratory Awards" allow at least 2 SMEs from 2 different Member States, or one Member State and an Associated State, to obtain financial support from the Commission to prepare a complete project proposal. The total cost of an Exploratory Award may not exceed 30.000 Euro, of which the Commission may finance up to 75% (or 22.500 Euro). The maximum duration of an Exploratory Award is 12 months.

Web address for SME specific measures: /sme/home_en.html

Marie Curie Training Fellowships

Marie Curie Training Fellowships are defined in the programme "improving the human research potential and the socio-economic base", and need to be related to the objectives of this programme. The following types are offered: Industry Host Fellowships (post-graduate and post-doctorate) and Experienced Researchers Fellowships ("category 40").

Web address for Marie Curie fellowships: /improving/fellowships/home.htm

INCO Bursaries

When submitting a research proposal, an application can be made at the same time for support of a young researcher from a Developing Country to work for up to 6 months in a European research institute participating in the project (see GROWTH Guide for Proposers for further details - web address: /growth/src/library.htm ).

Co-ordination Activities

Thematic Networks and Concerted Actions are designed to facilitate networking of organisations, co-ordination of activities and exchange and dissemination of knowledge so as to optimise research efforts, reach critical mass, and enhance impact at European level. They bring together industry, universities, research centres, users, research infrastructures, and other relevant stakeholders around a common S&T objective related to the priorities of the programme.

Please note that Thematic Networks and Concerted Actions can not provide funding for actual RTD activities.

Thematic Networks are used:

a) to co-ordinate a group (or "cluster" ) of projects funded at Community level. This may include relevant projects from more than one Key Action and from other EU programmes and, where appropriate, activities funded at national level or in other European frameworks. Participation is on a voluntary basis.

The Thematic Network proposal may be submitted simultaneously with the group of project proposals, or at a later stage if intended to co-ordinate on-going projects. Following a call for proposals, the GROWTH Programme itself may encourage the formation of project clusters linking several successful projects with common or interrelated objectives, and where the co-ordination of their activities would lead to clear added value.

b) to carry out activities addressing the objectives set out in the section "Support for Research Infrastructures" , which is implemented through a 2-stage process (Expressions of Interest and dedicated calls).

c) to establish and develop networking activities other than those defined above, which can contribute significantly to achieving the objectives of the Key Actions and Generic Technologies.

Guidance notes are available from the Growth document library at the web address: /growth/src/library.htm

Concerted Actions are used for the co-ordination of research activities already funded within individual Member states, in order for instance to channel efforts efficiently, to exchange and complement experience, to disseminate results.

Accompanying measures

Accompanying Measures are implemented according to Annex III of the specific programme. They contribute to its effective implementation, to the up-dating of the work programme, the preparation of future activities and the dissemination of results. They encompass activities for the monitoring of the programme, the assessment of RTD impacts as well as studies and recourse to external expertise, including setting up of monitoring or evaluation panels and expert groups. They allow support to international co-operation activities (e.g. IMS). They include activities to provide specific training, information and assistance and innovation support actions to promote the diffusion, exploitation, transfer and take-up (18) of RTD results, aimed at the broad user community, notably SMEs. They also cover support to scientific and technical meetings as well as innovation support events (e.g. investment fora), publications, web sites, etc. They can also consist of support activities (e.g. production of CRMs) or collaborative research studies contributing to initiatives of public or policy interest in relation with the Key actions.

The accompanying measures implemented through an open call published (19) at the start of the programme cover (see GROWTH Programme Guide for Proposers for further details):

  • Measure 1: Studies contributing to the implementation of Key Actions, Generic activities or Support for Research Infrastructures
  • Measure 2: Studies in preparation of future activities, addressing with a European Perspective RTD policy issues related to industrial competitiveness and sustainable growth or focussing on important specific socio-economic problems, emerging technologies, industrial sectors, etc
  • Measure 3: Innovation support actions to promote and facilitate the diffusion, transfer, exploitation and broad use of results
  • Measure 4: Awareness, assistance and information exchange actions
  • Measure 5: Training actions in support of RTD activities of the programme (other than Marie Curie Fellowships)

Accompanying Measures are encouraged in the following areas:

  • Development and diffusion of technology/innovation management methods in Europe in specific sectoral or cross-sectoral areas
  • Investigation of needs for industrial standards and related research in support of the deployment of new technologies
  • Investigation of the applicability of the New Approach principle to new industrial sectors
  • Assessment of specific Intellectual Property Right, ethical and regulatory issues affecting the exploitation of new technologies
  • Investigation of obstacles and good practices regarding the development and deployment of technologies contributing to more sustainable production/consumption in specific sectors
  • Investigation of measures to increase the co-operation between regulatory authorities
  • Actions to promote synergy and enhancement of co-ordination between programme activities as well as between national activities in Member States, Associated States and where appropriate, other countries (in particular in the context of S&T co-operation agreements) in specific areas of strategic importance
  • Evaluation of socio-economic impact of EU projects in specific areas of strategic importance in Europe, including the development of appropriate methodologies.

Accompanying measures consisting of policy driven research contributing to specific priorities of Key Action 2 "sustainable mobility and intermodality" are implemented through periodic calls. Some accompanying measures addressing specific topics may also be included in dedicated calls.


The Communication "Towards a European Research Area" points out the need to better use broadband electronic networks for research and to ensure the progressive establishment of digital co-operation. The e-Europe action plan launched by the European Commission in December 1999 and adopted at the European Council in Feira calls for the exploitation of the potential of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) resources in the context of the specific programmes.

Applicants in the next calls for proposals are therefore encouraged to extensively use new opportunities offered by ICT in performing, managing and networking RTD activities.


As a general principle, partnerships should include the stakeholders relevant to the development and ultimate implementation of the RTD results. This includes research centres and universities, product or technology developers, component and material providers, service companies, industrial users, policy makers, regulatory and standardisation authorities, and consumer organisations. SME participation in partnerships is particularly encouraged.


The co-ordinating forum for all research elements within FP5 that relate to this programme, in particular transport research topics, will be the «Board of Directors» of the GROWTH programme.

Co-ordinating arrangements within and between the different key and generic actions as well as with other programmes will follow the framework defined in annex III of the programme. They may take one or several of the following forms: common management structure (e.g. for SME related activities); co-ordinated calls, including where appropriate joint calls; co-ordination in the evaluation and selection procedure, including where appropriate joint evaluation and transfer of proposals; co-ordinated implementation of projects and cross-programme clusters of projects. Co-ordination with the other thematic programmes is based on the principle that activities linked with development of life sciences, or technologies for energy, environment or the Information Society will be concentrated in the relevant programmes. Activities dealing with integration and adaptation of these technologies in applications relating to competitive and sustainable growth will be conducted in this programme.

The international dimension of the programme will complement the actions of the Programme "confirming the international role of Community research". Activities that may be implemented jointly with other frameworks (e.g. COST, Eureka, IMS) will be carried out in accordance with the rules established for FP5. Activities would normally be focused on the exchange of information. This programme will be open to participation by researchers from outside the EU and Associated States according to the rules of participation set out in the Decision pursuant to article 130J of the Treaty. The programme 'Confirming the International Role of Community Research' provides funding for bursaries to young scientists from Developing Countries (including Emerging Economies and Mediterranean partner Countries) to come to Europe to work in projects of this programme for a period of up to 6 months.

The "competitive and sustainable growth" programme will place special emphasis on the dissemination, transfer, utilisation and/or exploitation of R&D results leading to innovation. To this end the programme will carry out activities in co-ordination with the "Innovation and the participation of SMEs » programme (web address: ), inter-alia, to promote the transfer and exploitation of EC RTD results, to provide information on EC RTD results, to assist in preparing management tools to promote the exploitation of EC RTD results by the consortia and to monitor with the help of adequate tools, such as the Technology Implementation Plan and technology audits, the further use of RTD results, to assist with the assessment of the efficiency and effectiveness of the assistance network for technology transfer, of joint actions between the thematic programmes and the horizontal programme and of the Innovation Units or Innovation/SME units.

Thematic Programme 3 domains Examples of areas for possible co-ordination with other programmes in FP5
KA1 Microsystems, networked enterprises and knowledge management with Thematic Programme 2
KA2 Traffic management and GNSS with Thematic Programme 2
Emissions and land use planning
with Thematic Programme 4
Health related aspects
with Thematic Programme 1
KA3 Advanced vehicle concepts with Thematic Programmes 2 & 4
Sustainable management of the sea with Programme 4
KA4 On board systems with Thematic Programme 2
Control of emissions with Thematic Programme 4
Generic Technologies Materials with Programmes 1,2 & 4 and the JRC
Anti-fraud with Programmes 1 & 2 and the JRC
Reference materials with Programmes 1 & 4 and the JRC
Support to standardisation with Programmes 1, 2 & 4
Support to research infrastructure Access to facilitie s with Activity 4

The horizontal programme "Improving the human research potential and the socio-economic knowledge base" (web address: /improving/ ) establishes the common rules for the implementation of the Marie Curie Training Fellowships , in order to ensure the consistent high quality and prestige of the schemes. These rules include a common definition of Marie Curie Fellowships, a Single Entry Point for the reception of all Marie Curie Fellowship proposals, common rules for eligibility and for evaluation, common legal and financial provisions as well as a harmonised feedback to applicants and monitoring of the fellows.

Support for research infrastructure is provided by thematic programmes, as well as by this horizontal programme which has the responsibility of drawing up and publishing on a regular basis a "map" showing for all classes of research infrastructure to which specific programme(s) they may apply for support. Specific measures will also be taken by this horizontal programme to ensure co-ordination of the socio-economic research to be implemented within the current programme. Socio-economic research can be funded as well by the key action on « improving the socio-economic knowledge base » and the horizontal programme, which will draw up an annual report on socio-economic research in the Fifth Framework Programme.

Exchange of information and collaboration with the direct actions of the JRC (home page: ) will be developed, where appropriate, in particular in areas related to materials research, fight against fraud and Certified Reference Materials (CRMs). (IRMM home page: )

(18) Take up measures involving significant technical work should normally be included in RTD, demonstration or combined RTD / demonstration projects submitted in response to periodic calls.

(19) Certain accompanying measures will be implemented through other processes. Services to the Commission (e.g. studies) will be carried out following specific calls for tenders, to be launched as appropriate. Recourse to external experts will be based on calls for candidates. Exceptionally, unsolicited applications for a subsidy may also be supported.

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