Research & Innovation - Participant Portal

TOPIC : Promoting integrity in the use of research results in evidence based policy: a focus on non-medical research

Topic identifier: SwafS-21-2017
Publication date: 14 October 2015

Types of action: CSA Coordination and support action
Planned opening date:
12 April 2017
Deadline: 30 August 2017 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Science with and for Society
Work Programme Year: H2020-2016-2017
Work Programme Part: Science with and for Society
Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

Research ethics is commonly associated with life sciences and in particular medical and biomedical research. The focus of the attention concerns interventions on humans, the involvement of children and vulnerable population. Because of the nature of the research and the lower risk attributed to the possible consequences of misconduct, non-medical research areas (such as social sciences) are less commonly associated with ethical concerns although researchers are regularly involved in protocols that have a direct impact on the wellbeing of people and as experts in policy making, provide evidence nurturing the decision process. In this context, ethical principles are of high importance. In case of breaches of these principles, the economic, social and environmental impact can be significant. Relevant principles are e.g. to only provide policy advise in fields related to one’s expertise, to distinguish ideology from science, to state clearly limitations to one’s scientific results, and be transparent on potential conflicts-of-interests.

In the current economic environment, the use of expertise in the definition of solutions and action plans constitutes a major challenge due to the high repercussions of related decisions on innovation capacities, jobs and well-being.


It is of paramount importance, especially when there are different schools of thought, to ensure that the channelling and processing of expertise is adequately organised so as to enable optimal policy decisions. When the principles of responsible conduct of research are not followed, the socio-economic impact can be significant.

In order to support the Commission’s policy on boosting innovation, growth and high quality job and in the context of the post-2007 crisis, the action proposed shall aim at building an operational ethics and methodological framework facilitating that decision makers at national and EU level are provided with reliable evidence originating from cutting edge research. The conditions to maximise the Commission's policy outcomes and impact shall be studied, taking into account the necessity to comply with the highest standards of research ethics and integrity. Particular attention will be paid to the ethics of innovation and the enabling conditions for making innovation more relevant to the needs of society and more effectively meeting the Europe 2020 socioeconomic targets.

The proposed work shall also examine and analyse the relationship between science based policy advice, responsible conduct of research and research ethics. To this end an Oviedo/Helsinki type framework for non-medical research shall be proposed based on a wide consultation with all relevant stakeholders including industry and civil society. Such a framework shall discuss areas such as: a) covert research, b) working in dangerous areas/conflict zones and c) behavioral research collecting data from social media/internet sources.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of the order of EUR 4.2 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

This action allows for the provision of financial support to third parties in line with the conditions set out in Part K of the General Annexes.

Expected Impact:

The proposed action will promote a more responsible and effective use of scientific information, originating from non-medical research areas, in support to EU policy making by increasing the understanding of the ethical challenges and proposing in response adequate ethical standards and normative framework for evidence based policy.

Topic conditions and documents

Please read carefully all provisions below before the preparation of your application.

  1. List of countries and applicable rules for funding: described in part A of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme.
    Note also that a number of non-EU/non-Associated Countries that are not automatically eligible for funding have made specific provisions for making funding available for their participants in Horizon 2020 projects (follow the links to Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Hong Kong&Macau, IndiaJapan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Taiwan).

  2. Eligibility and admissibility conditions: described in part B and C of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme [, with the following exceptions]:

    Proposal page limits and layout: Please refer to Part B of the standard proposal template.

  3. Evaluation

    3.1  Evaluation criteria and procedure, scoring and threshold: described in part H of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme [, with the following exceptions]:

    3.2 Submission and evaluation process: Guide to the submission and evaluation process

  4. Indicative timetable for evaluation and grant agreement:

    Information on the outcome of single-stage evaluation: maximum 5 months from the deadline for submission.
    Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months from the deadline for submission.

  5. Provisions, proposal templates and evaluation forms for the type(s) of action(s) under this topic:

    Coordination and Support Action:

    Specific provisions and funding rates
    Standard proposal template
    Standard evaluation form
    H2020 General MGA -Multi-Beneficiary
    Annotated Grant Agreement

  6. Additional provisions:

    Horizon 2020 budget flexibility

    Classified information

    Technology readiness levels (TRL) – where a topic description refers to TRL, these definitions apply.

    Financial support to Third Parties – where a topic description foresees financial support to Third Parties, these provisions apply.

  7. Open access must be granted to all scientific publications resulting from Horizon 2020 actions, and proposals must refer to measures envisaged. Where relevant, proposals should also provide information on how the participants will manage the research data generated and/or collected during the project, such as details on what types of data the project will generate, whether and how this data will be exploited or made accessible for verification and re-use, and how it will be curated and preserved.

This topic participates per default in the open access to research data pilot which aims to improve and maximise access to and re-use of research data generated by projects:
• The pilot applies to the data needed to validate the results presented in scientific publications. Additionally, projects can choose to make other data available for open access and need to describe their approach in a Data Management Plan (to be provided within six months after the project start).
• Note that the evaluation phase proposals will not be evaluated more favourably because they are part of the Pilot, and will not be penalised for opting out of the Pilot.
• Projects can at any stage opt-out of the pilot.

The legal requirements for projects participating in this pilot are in the article 29.3 of the Model Grant Agreement.
Further information on the Open Research Data Pilot is made available in the H2020 Online Manual.


8. Additional documents:

H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: Science with and for society

H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: Dissemination, Exploitation and Evaluation

H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: General Annexes


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