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Supporting National Contact Points for Horizon 2020 Societal Challenge 2 on ‘Food Security, Sustainable Agriculture, Marine and Maritime Research and the Bioeconomy’ and the Key Enabling Technology (KET) ‘Biotechnology’

Specific challenge:Facilitate trans-national co-operation between NCPs within Horizon 2020 Societal Challenge 2 on ‘Food Security, Sustainable Agriculture, Marine and Maritime Research and the Bioeconomy’ and the Key Enabling Technology (KET) ‘Biotechnology’ with a view to identifying and sharing good practices and raising the general standard of support to programme applicants, taking into account the diversity of actors that make up the constituency of this Societal challenge and the KET Biotechnology.

Scope:Support should be given to a consortium of formally nominated NCPs in the areas of Societal Challenge 2 and the KET ‘Biotechnology’. The activities should be tailored according to the nature of the area, and the priorities of the NCPs concerned. Various mechanisms may be included, such as benchmarking, joint workshops, enhanced cross-border brokerage events, specific training linked to Societal Challenge 2 and the KET ‘Biotechnology’ as well as to gender dimension of Research and Innovation, and twinning schemes. Special attention should be given to enhance the competence of NCPs, including helping less experienced NCPs rapidly acquire the know-how accumulated in other countries.

The focus throughout should be on issues specific to Societal Challenge 2 and the KET Biotechnology and should not duplicate actions foreseen in the NCP network for quality standards and horizontal issues under ‘Science with and for Society’.

From EU Member States and Associated Countries, only NCPs who have been officially appointed by the relevant national authorities are eligible to participate in and receive funding for this action. In line with the objectives of the EU strategy for international cooperation in research and innovation, participation of NCPs from third countries is welcome[1].

The consortium should have a good representation of experienced and less experienced NCPs.

Submission of a single proposal is encouraged. NCPs from EU Member States or Associated Countries choosing not to participate as a member of the consortium should be identified and the reason explained in the proposal. These NCPs are nevertheless invited and encouraged to participate in the project activities (e.g. workshops), and  the costs incurred by the consortium for such participation (e.g. travel costs paid by the consortium) may be included in the estimated budget and be eligible for funding by the Commission.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU in the range of EUR 2 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected impact:

  • An improved and professionalised NCP service across Europe, thereby helping simplify access to Horizon 2020 calls, lowering the entry barriers for newcomers, and raising the average quality of proposals submitted.
  • A more consistent level of NCP support services across Europe and in connection with the rest of the world.

Type of action: Coordination and support actions

[1] This is without prejudice to the general rules on the funding of legal entities from third-countries, as set in part A of the annex to the work programme.