Challenges of contract preparation

When preparing contracts for the selected transnational projects it is important to take into account challenges specific for transnational cooperation, such as issues emerging from the joint funding , or issue related to the handling of IPR. Information on IPR issues as part of funding contracts is provided here.

Issues related to funding:

The funding organisations should achieve agreement on the following points – in consistence with their applicable national/regional regulations preferably before launching a call:

  • duration of a project,
  • requirements for additional joint reporting,
  • rules for handing IPR issues and the exploitation of results - usually established in a Consortium Agreement between the project participants, and
  • the necessity of a Consortium Agreement for contracting.

Issues related to the handling of IPR:

When setting up consortium agreements the participants in selected transnational proposals should take into consideration any mandatory national/regional laws, including legal requirements and governmental rights relating to public funding. Due consideration should also be given to laws relating to employee inventions. Project participants should finally be aware of any requirements from the P2P funders concerning the funders' rights to non-commercial licensing and use of research results, and other obligations set by the funders towards the project participants.

Models for Consortium Agreements:

  • DESCA 2020 is a comprehensive Model Consortium Agreement for Horizon 2020. Initiated by key FP7 stakeholders and updated for Horizon 2020 in consultation with the FP community, it offers a reliable frame of reference for project consortia. 
  • The Eurostars Consortium Agreement Skeleton is a very practical tool when deciding on how to develop a Consortium Agreement

Helpdesk and Guidelines

  • The European Commission offers a free-of-charge IPR service to inform and advise partners on Intellectual and Industrial Property Rights - the IPR Helpdesk.

Advice for ERA-NET COFUND: For the cofunded call, it is advisable that contract preparations are finalised before month 18 so that 3–year-projects can be completed and fully paid before the end of the ERA-NET COFUND contract (month 60). Consequently, the ERA-NET COFUND consortium should also agree on whether to allow (or not) potential extensions of national/regional contracts.

It is advisable to correlate the payment schedule for the selected transnational project with the overall payments from the EC to the ERA-NET COFUND network in order to ensure a positive bank account balance at all times.