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Another Way of Focusing on Results: Joint Action Plans (JAPs)

One of the main objectives of the legislative framework for the European Structural and Investment Funds for 2014-2020 is to reinforce the focus on results. Within the Cohesion Policy, one of the ways to do so is by using a Joint Action Plan (JAP).

What is it?

A JAP enables Member States to implement parts of one or more operational programmes using a results-oriented approach towards a pre-defined goal. Its focus on results is ensured because it has a coherent intervention logic and makes use of SCOs. Selected output and result indicators are linked with corresponding unit costs or lump sums, and this makes it possible to make payments based on achievement levels.

Why is it useful?

Using a joint action plan is particularly useful when adequate measures and a more integrated approach are needed to tackle an existing problem and achieve some of the goals of one of more operational programme(s). Moreover, the use of SCOs significantly simplifies the financial management and control arrangements of JAPs, reduces the error rate, and makes it possible to focus on the impact of the action rather than on tracing every euro of co-financed expenditure to individual supporting documents.

How to do it?

To use a JAP, the Member State concerned must first agree it with the Commission. The rules for submitting a proposal for a JAP, its content, preparation and implementation are laid down in Articles 104-109 of Regulation (EU) No 1303/2013.

More detailed information can be found via the document below:

Guidance on Joint Action Plans

Pilot Joint Action Plans:

The European Commission has recently awarded two grants for the implementation of two pilot JAPs:

  • Training2work: joint action plan increase VET students’ employability and facilitate their transition to the labour market” – in Portugal
  • "Tilburg for NEETs and Migrants" – in The Netherlands

The two pilots will run until June 2020 and will show how it is possible to implement projects through a result-based approach in the fields of training, youth unemployment, and the integration of migrants.

Further information on the two pilot JAPs can be found under the related information section.