Research & Innovation - Participant Portal H2020 Online Manual

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Evaluation Process and Results

Evaluation procedure

The evaluation procedure is described in detail in the Guide for proposal submission and evaluation.

Each full proposal is evaluated by at least three experts, but in many cases more experts are needed who know about the full range of disciplines and sectors covered by the proposal.

For the first stage of two-stage procedures a minimum of two experts may be used in certain cases.

Individual evaluation

Experts work individually. They give a score for each criterion, with explanatory comments. These are communicated to you via the Participant Portal, in an Evaluation Summary Report (ESR).

Consensus group

After carrying out an individual evaluation, an expert will join other experts who have evaluated the same proposal in a consensus group, to agree on a common position, including comments and scores.

Each group is assisted by a moderator who:

  • seeks a consensus, impartially and
  • ensures that each proposal is evaluated fairly, according to the evaluation criteria

The moderator is normally a Commission official.

Panel review

If there are insufficient funds to award grants to all proposals that achieve a qualifying score in the evaluation, a review panel will:

  • review the scores and comments for all proposals within a call to check for consistency across the evaluations
  • if necessary, propose a new set of marks or revise comments, and resolve cases where evaluators were unable to agree

The panel may comprise experts from consensus groups, new experts, or a combination of the two. There may be one panel covering the whole call or several panels covering different parts of the call. Each panel will be responsible for one or more ranked lists, as defined by the indicative budget and call conditions set out in the work programme.

Proposals with the same score

The panel will recommend a priority order for proposals with the same score, using the procedure given in the work programme.

Hearings

The Commission may arrange hearings as part of the panel review. In this case, invitations are sent to the coordinators of proposals that achieved consensus scores that are above the individual and overall qualifying thresholds and, sometimes, also to those with scores above individual thresholds but below the overall qualifying threshold.

The coordinator may be asked to provide further information to clarify the proposals and help the panel establish its final ranking list and scores.

This information can be provided in writing, by phone or by a remote video interview, provided both parties agree.

The panel report is approved by at least three panel experts, including the panel rapporteur (if an expert) and the chair.

Outcome of evaluation

Final evaluation results

Before notifying coordinators of the final evaluation results, the Commission reviews the results of the experts’ evaluation and puts together the final ranking list.

Proposals will not be offered funding if the Commission finds that it is already funding very similar work elsewhere, or a proposal is in any way manifestly contrary to established EU or Euratom policies.

Final rankings

The Commission:

  • produces a ranked list of proposals, including all proposals with scores above the qualifying score
  • draws up a list of proposals for possible funding from that list. The number of proposals in the list depends on the available budget.

Each page of topic conditions of a call on the Participant Portal gives approximate timelines when coordinators will receive information on the outcome of the evaluation.

Reserve list

If the available budget is too small to fund all proposals that reached the qualifying score in the evaluation round, some proposals may be put on a reserve list – of proposals that may be offered funding if a higher-scoring project does not go ahead or additional funds become available.

When a proposal is placed on the reserve list, the coordinator is informed. The Commission may also specify a date after which grant agreement is unlikely to be offered.

Rejection decisions

The Commission will notify proposal coordinators if their proposal has been rejected because:

  • it is found to be ineligible (before or during the evaluation)
  • it falls short of the relevant thresholds
  • it is too far down the ranking list to qualify for the limited amount of funding available
  • not to fulfil the ethical requirements, following an ethics review (see Article 13.3, Rules for participation)
  • it raises security concerns.

Invitation to prepare grant

After the finalisation of the evaluation, applicants will receive the Evaluation Result Letter.
The coordinators of successful proposals for which funding is available, are invited to start preparations for the grant.

    You are informed about evaluation and ranking results by an e-mail notification from the Commission. The same notification will also arrive to My Notifications Inbox on the Participant Portal.
  • It announces that the Evaluation Result Letter is available on the Participant Portal. To read it, you need to log on with your individual account, go to My Proposals page under My Area section and click on the Follow-up (FO) button.
  • If your proposal is successful, you will receive in the same notification both the information that the Evaluation Results are available on the PP and a request to start preparing grant agreement data.
    In this case go to My Projects page under My Area section and click the Manage Project (MP) button.
  • It is also possible, when the invitation to start grant preparation is delayed, that you may still receive two different notifications - first about the Evaluation Results, then another about the start of grant preparation.

You can find and download your Evaluation Result Letter in the Grant Management Services tool:

Evaluation Result Letter is available in the Grant Management Services tool

To follow the further stepts of preparing your grant, please check the next section: Grant preparation.
You will receive e-mail notifications about all the actions that you need to carry out for the grant preparation. For more detail, please see the list of all the grant-related notifications and their recipients.