Research & Innovation - Participant Portal


TOPIC : Taking lessons from the practices of interdisciplinarity in Europe

Topic identifier: GOVERNANCE-15-2018
Publication date: 27 October 2017

Types of action: CSA Coordination and support action
Opening date:
07 November 2017
Deadline: 13 March 2018 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Societal Challenges
Work Programme Year: H2020-2018-2020
Topic Updates
  • 28 February 2018 11:12


    Dear applicants,
    We bring to your attention the following notice regarding page limits applicable to proposals.
    Applicants are allowed to remove the page break in the cover page of the template for the technical annex, i.e. the proposal text can start on the cover page.
    We sincerely apologise for any inconvenience caused by the late notice on this.
    With kind regards,
    European Commission - Participant Portal Submission System team
Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

“Social sciences and humanities research will be fully integrated into each of the priorities of Horizon 2020 and each of the specific objectives and will contribute to the evidence base for policy making at international, Union, national, regional and local level. In relation to societal challenges, social sciences and humanities (SSH) will be mainstreamed as an essential element of the activities needed to tackle each of the societal challenges to enhance their impact”.

This statement in the Horizon 2020 regulation opens the way to an ambitious policy of SSH integration and its measurement and impact. Beyond the actual practices of “SSH integration” within Horizon 2020 already monitored by the European Commission this Coordination and Support Action should look at integration/interdisciplinarity practices within and outside of Horizon 2020 both between SSH and other sciences as well as between the diverse disciplines within the social sciences and humanities, in Europe and, where relevant at national or local level. The challenge is to learn and further build on these practices.


Interdisciplinarity for this topic means interdisciplinarity between SSH and other sciences as well as interdisciplinarity between the diverse disciplines within the social sciences, humanities and the arts. Furthermore, the European Commission supports a genuine integration of SSH, meaning that the SSH are not an “add-on” to other sciences but are fully mobilised, like other sciences, in building collectively the relevant scientific interdisciplinary questions for answering Europe’s societal challenges. Finally, the Commission recognises that interdisciplinarity between SSH and other sciences is only one among several scientific approaches (i.e. mono-disciplinarity and other kinds of interdisciplinarity) and therefore that the policy to support “SSH integration” needs to be justified and selective.

The scope of this topic is thus neither concentrated on the epistemology of interdisciplinarity, nor on the ad hoc contribution of SSH to other sciences, but is rather meant for SSH experts, in close cooperation with experts from other sciences, to take a leading role in analysing the actual practices and potential of interdisciplinarity in Europe, inside and outside Horizon 2020, as well as their outputs and impacts.

Proposals should be able to scan a wide array of practices and indicators of interdisciplinarity between SSH and non-SSH sciences in Europe, whether at national level or at bilateral or multilateral level, including third countries where relevant. They should analyse best practices but also instances of failed attempts at such interdisciplinarity. On this basis, they should try to give better socio-institutional accounts of various types of interdisciplinarity and their outputs and impacts. They should analyse the conditions for supporting meaningful interdisciplinarity between SSH and other sciences, including through evaluations of programmes and projects and researchers’ career development, and suggest whether new kinds of tools or institutional solutions could become, in a feedback loop, relevant within the Framework Programme or outside it. Based on empirical evidence of existing or nascent interdisciplinary cooperation between SSH and other sciences, proposals should also assess the potential for interdisciplinarity for responding to the different societal challenges that Europe needs to tackle, in areas like health, food and agriculture, energy and climate change, technological innovation, security or any other relevant emerging area. They should thus point to established, nascent or potential areas where interdisciplinarity between SSH and other sciences could be more adequately supported.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU in the order of EUR 1.5 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:

The action will contribute to developing a policy for integration/interdisciplinarity between SSH and other sciences at European level based on empirical experiences of this kind of interdisciplinarity. It will also allow the identification of areas or issues which show potential for genuine interdisciplinary cooperation between SSH and other sciences, which would deserve to be supported in the future in order to meet Europe’s societal challenges.

Delegation Exception Footnote:

This activity directly aimed at supporting the development and implementation of evidence base for R&I policies and supporting various groups of stakeholders is excluded from the delegation to the Research Executive Agency and will be implemented by the Commission services.

Cross-cutting Priorities:

Socio-economic science and humanities

Topic conditions and documents

1. Eligible countries: described in Annex A of the Work Programme.
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. See the information in the Online Manual.


2. Eligibility and admissibility conditions: described in Annex B and Annex C of the Work Programme.

Proposal page limits and layout: please refer to Part B of the proposal template in the submission system below.


3. Evaluation:

  • Evaluation criteria, scoring and thresholds are described in Annex H of the Work Programme. 
  • Submission and evaluation processes are described in the Online Manual.

4. Indicative time for evaluation and grant agreements:

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


5. Proposal templates, evaluation forms and model grant agreements (MGA):

Coordination and Support Action:

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

6. Additional provisions:

Horizon 2020 budget flexibility


Members of consortium are required to conclude a consortium agreement, in principle prior to the signature of the grant agreement.

8. Additional documents:

1. Introduction WP 2018-2020
2. Europe in a changing world - inclusive, innovative and reflective societies WP 2018-2020
3. Dissemination, Exploitation and Evaluation WP 2018-2020

General annexes to the Work Programme 2018-2020

Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Regulation of Establishment
Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Rules for Participation
Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Specific Programme

7. Open access must be granted to all scientific publications resulting from Horizon 2020 actions.

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.

Open access to research data
The Open Research Data Pilot has been extended to cover all Horizon 2020 topics for which the submission is opened on 26 July 2016 or later. Projects funded under this topic will therefore by default provide open access to the research data they generate, except if they decide to opt-out under the conditions described in Annex L of the Work Programme. Projects can opt-out at any stage, that is both before and after the grant signature.

Note that the evaluation phase proposals will not be evaluated more favourably because they plan to open or share their data, and will not be penalised for opting out.

Open research data sharing applies to the data needed to validate the results presented in scientific publications. Additionally, projects can choose to make other data available open access and need to describe their approach in a Data Management Plan.

Projects need to create a Data Management Plan (DMP), except if they opt-out of making their research data open access. A first version of the DMP must be provided as an early deliverable within six months of the project and should be updated during the project as appropriate. The Commission already provides guidance documents, including a template for DMPs. See the Online Manual.

Eligibility of costs: costs related to data management and data sharing are eligible for reimbursement during the project duration.

The legal requirements for projects participating in this pilot are in the article 29.3 of the Model Grant Agreement.


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