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Fifth Framework Programme



Fifth Framework Programme - External Advisory Groups

Second opinion of the External Advisory Group for the key action "New perspectives for aeronautics" on revision of the workprogramme, priorities and evaluation criteria for the 15 december 1999 call for proposals.

This report was produced by the External Advisory Group (EAG) for the Key Action "New perspectives for aeronautics", and represents its views. These views have not been adopted or in any way approved by the Commission and should not be relied upon as a statement of the Commission's or the Research-DG's views.

This report is also available as PDF-file: aeronautics2.pdf (64 Kb)


The External Advisory Group (EAG) met on 30 September 1999 to examine the results of the first Call for proposals (deadline 15 March 1999) and advise the Commission on the 15 December 1999 Call with regard to:

  • Revision of the technical content of Key Action 4 workprogramme,
  • Priorities for the Call for the two parts of the workprogramme : Critical Technologies (CTs) and Technology Platforms (TPs),
  • Budgetary allocation to the Call,
  • Criteria for evaluation of proposals.

Workprogramme revision

1. The Group agreed that the technical description of the part of the workprogramme dealing with CTs continues to be valid for the second Call.
With respect to TPs, the Group reviewed the draft document prepared by the Commission entitled "Workprogramme Revision. Support document for the Advisory Group discussion. Technology Platforms" of 23 September 1999. The document brings greater detail to the technical description of the Platforms that were not open in the first Call for proposals (second Group of TPs in the current version of the workprogramme). The Group considered that the description provided in the document is appropriate for the second Call.

Priorities for the 15 December 1999 Call (2nd Call)

Critical Technologies

2. The Group recommended that the second Call should be open to the CTs workprogramme in its entirety.
Moreover, in view of the results of the first Call and the coverage obtained in the various technical areas of the workprogramme, it was recommended that the second Call should encourage proposals on: Objective 4.1-Reducing aircraft development cost and time to market, configurational and interdisciplinary aspects (section 4.2.9 of the workprogramme) and operational maintenance (section 4.4.2 of the workprogramme).

3. Concerning the reasons why certain areas of the workprogramme raised a lower interest from the proposers to the first Call, the Group recommended that the stakeholders, notably industry, as well as the Commission services, should be invited to comment and analyse the situation.

Technology Platforms

4. The Group agreed that the following four Platforms should be open in the second Call: TP3-Novel rotary-wing aircraft configuration, TP5-Power optimised aircraft, TP6-Low external noise aircraft and TP9-Integrated and modular aircraft electronic systems.
These four priority Platforms correspond to three that were not open in the first Call (TP5, TP6 and TP9) and to one (TP3) for which the proposals submitted were not retained for funding.

5. It is the opinion of the Group that competition between proposals to the various priority TPs is recommendable. However, there should be the possibility for a TP that is not covered in the Call as a result of such a competition, to be open again in a future Call, if the subject is still regarded as a priority.

6. Concerning TP7-Low noise aircraft cabin and TP8-Novel fixed-wing aircraft configuration, the Group agreed that they should be considered for a further Call in 2000, it recommended that in the case of TP8, preparatory work in the development of Critical Technologies should continue or be initiated.

Programming of Calls for Proposals and budgetary allocation to the 15 December 1999 Call.

7. The Group was informed by the Commission of the indicative budgetary envelope to the Programme and the Key Action for the following years.
The Group considered that the current remaining budget to the Key Action should be allocated in only two further Calls, in 1999 and 2000. It was recommended that the Calls should take place on the same date in the two years (i.e. December 1999 and December 2000) in order to facilitate awareness and proposal preparation by the stakeholders.

8. Concerning the distribution of the remaining budget between the two Calls, it is recommended to pursue a front loading approach for the December 1999 Call.
Also, taking into consideration the number of TPs identified as a priority for this second Call (see point 4 above), the Group proposes that a higher proportion of the budget should be allocated to TP projects and a lesser amount to CT projects. Conversely, the December 2000 Call should dedicate a greater part of its budget to fund CT projects.
Considering the total funding available for the two Calls, the Group recommended an indicative distribution of approximately 120 M€ for TPs and approximately 80 M€ for CTs in the December 1999 Call.

Evaluation criteria

9. In the view of the Group, it is preferable to maintain the same evaluation criteria and thresholds used in the first Call and apply it in the next Call without modifications.

10. Additionally, the Group made a number of recommendations to be taken into account for the next evaluation:

  • Proposers should be invited to identify whether the proposal is to be regarded as a basic research project or an applied research project. Accordingly, evaluators should be aware of the importance and special character of basic research. In this respect evaluation groups should have a proper balance of industry and research experts.
  • The evaluators should be informed in a clear way of the number of SMEs participating in a proposal that comply with the EC definition.

It was also recommended that the Commission invites the experts for evaluation with early notice, so as to ensure that optimum expertise is available.


External Advisory groups | Fifth Framework Programme | 24.02.2000

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