Research & Innovation - Participant Portal


TOPIC : Coordinating European brain research and developing global initiatives

Topic identifier: SC1-HCO-10-2018
Publication date: 27 October 2017

Types of action: CSA Coordination and support action
Opening date:
07 November 2017
Deadline: 18 April 2018 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Societal Challenges
Work Programme Year: H2020-2018-2020
Topic Updates
  • 05 October 2018 11:58

    A result overview of the evaluation that closed on 18 April 2018 is now available under the "Topic conditions and documents" section.


Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

The EU and its Member States have made considerable investments in brain research. The European Commission alone has invested some EUR 5.3 billion over the past 10 years. At the same time, many large research initiatives such as the Human Brain Project (HBP), the Joint Programming on Neurodegenerative Diseases (JPND), the ERA-Net NEURON and the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) have been established in parallel. The numerous resulting research projects have generated considerable amounts of knowledge and innovative approaches. However, translation into new health interventions is below expectations and needs.

Therefore, in many areas of brain research, there is a particular need for better networking and coordination of efforts, at both European and global level, in order to minimise fragmentation and duplication. At the same time, better access to and sharing of data and holistic analysis of results are of crucial importance in line with the EC's Open science policy. Addressing these gaps would create new synergies and open new avenues of research and to which in turn will foster understanding of diseases, innovation and accelerate innovation through the development of new diagnosis, prevention and treatment options in areas of high and unmet medical needs.


Proposals should:

  1. Identify areas of neurosciences where the need for enhanced coordination of research communities into active clusters is particularly acute;
  2. Accelerate exchange between researchers in different European research initiatives to promote cooperation and to minimise fragmentation and duplication;
  3. Support the emergence of these clusters, facilitate links with research infrastructures and other major initiatives, in coordination with European Commission services, with the aim of sharing data and enhancing the exploitation of results, fostering new collaborations and identifying future research objectives;
  4. Identify and develop tools and support activities implemented by EU funded initiatives and infra-structures suitable to develop Open Science policy in the neurosciences by sharing and better utilisation of clinical data via IT platforms and also considering any relevant regulatory requirements and policies;
  5. Explore possibilities for broader scale cooperation at global level by fostering dialogue with researchers outside Europe in coordination with research funders around the world, in order to foster the global brain research agenda.

The relevant stakeholders must be involved, in particular thematically focussed research communities, learned societies, large research initiatives, infrastructures as well as relevant funding bodies and regulatory authorities, in order to ensure effective implementation and impact of this coordination action.

The Commission considers that a proposal requesting an EU contribution between EUR 1 to 2 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:
  • Reduce fragmentation and duplication of research efforts and foster synergies through enhanced coordination of brain research efforts at EU and at global level.
  • Improve access to and optimise the use of research infrastructures and data sources by the neuroscience research communities, thus ensuring better exploitation of the large investments made in brain research.
  • Achieve critical mass and economies of scale by initiating and fostering new global research initiatives.
  • Enable and accelerate the translation of breakthroughs in brain research into relevant clinical applications.
Cross-cutting Priorities:

International cooperation

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.

The thresholds for each criterion in a single stage process will be 4 (Excellence), 4 (Impact) and 3 (Implementation). The cumulative threshold will be 12.

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

Essential information for clinical studies

6. Additional provisions:

Horizon 2020 budget flexibility
Classified information
Technology readiness levels (TRL) – where a topic description refers to TRL, these definitions apply.

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

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.

8. Additional documents:

Introduction WP 2018-20
Health, demographic change and well-being WP 2018-20
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

Additional documents

  • Call Results en

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