Research & Innovation - Participant Portal


TOPIC : Advanced materials and innovative design for improved functionality and aesthetics in high added value consumer goods

Topic identifier: NMBP-05-2017
Publication date: 14 October 2015

Types of action: IA Innovation action
Opening date:
11 May 2016
2nd stage Deadline:
27 October 2016 17:00:00
04 May 2017 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Industrial Leadership
Work Programme Year: H2020-2016-2017
Topic Updates
  • 11 January 2017 10:28

    Switzerland as associated country

    From 1 January 2017 Switzerland is associated to the whole Horizon 2020 programme instead of the previous partial association.

    This applies to all the grant agreements signed on 1 January 2017 and afterwards.

    For more information please see the relevant Note on the Participant Portal.

Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

Creative industries have been defined as one of the most active, significant and relevant new emerging industrial sectors in the European economy (Report on Emergency Industries, PwC, 2012). The creative industries linked to manufacturing (e.g. architecture, automotive, art, crafts, supports for cultural items, decoration, fashion, furniture, lighting, interior design materials and products, jewels, luxury, media supports, publishing, sport and toys) are generators of competitive advantages that cannot be reproduced elsewhere, promoters of local development and drivers of industrial change (COM(2012)537 ‘Promoting cultural and creative sectors for growth and jobs in the EU’).

Creative SMEs in particular can make use of design as a strategic tool to create innovative products and services addressing new consumers' standards and societal challenges while assuring competitive and sustainable development.

However, the future European exploitation of this rich sector depend on the EU ability to support high-growth creative SMEs and start-ups in exploiting highly innovative technological advances in materials for commercial, cultural and societal applications.

To promote design-driven innovation, a number of action lines have been endorsed by the Commission, including integrating design into research and development and promoting new collaborative innovation strategies (‘Implementing an Action Plan for Design-Driven Innovation’, SWD(2013)380).


Proposals should address the development of innovative advanced material solutions (e.g. superhydrophobic/superoleophobic nanomaterials and nanoscale systems, self-cleaning and self-healing systems, smart textile fabrics and papers, biomimetic, shape change/memory materials, self-assembling systems, energy harvesters) for use in the creative industry sectors defined above to make urban living significantly easier, more sustainable, more comfortable, more secure and more functional. Creativity, cultural and societal values, alongside specialist knowledge, should be driving the material innovation (e.g. increased performance, lightness, safety, sustainability, improved lifetime) to add value to products through the use of new intangible material functionalities (e.g. creative design, artistic expression, trend translation, enhanced sensations, cultural values).

Proof of concept in terms of product and/or process must be delivered within the project, excluding commercially usable prototypes (in compliance with European Commission Communication 2006/C323/01), but convincingly demonstrating scalability towards industrial needs.

In order to ensure the industrial relevance and impact of the research efforts, the key properties improvement and commercial potential of the innovative technologies compared to state-of-the-art solutions currently available on the market should be convincingly assessed in the proposal. Sustainability aspects in the whole life cycle of the final products should be taken into account. The active participation of designers, artists, societal stakeholders, material scientists, materials suppliers, researchers, manufacturers and end users of the resulting products represents an added value and this will be reflected in the second stage of the evaluation. As relevant, the proposed activities should address sex and gender specific aspects[1].

Activities are expected to focus on Technology Readiness Levels 4 to 6, and target Technology Readiness Level 7.

A significant participation of SMEs with R&D capacities is encouraged.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU between EUR 5 and 7 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:
  • Novel, higher added-value, better performing, sustainable, versatile, appealing designs and creative solutions for consumer goods based on innovative advanced materials or structures;
  • Good integrability of the proposed innovative materials in final products (e.g. using a modular approach) and quickly reconfigurable to new custom requirements;
  • Promoting new collaborative innovation strategies and practices along the value chain to develop commercial, cultural and societal applications with a strong user orientation, creating new business opportunities for the European industry and contributing to the circular economy in terms of one or more of the following: increased competiveness, faster recovery of investment, access to new markets, access to new customer segments, increased business effectiveness, increased costumer engagement, increased environmental sustainability;
  • Enhancing innovation capability and competiveness of European SMEs by effectively combining and transferring new and existing knowledge with ‘intangible’ factors (e.g. creative design, artistic expression, trend translation, enhanced sensations, cultural values);
  • Increasing awareness of designers about new materials;
  • Contribute to achieving the relevant EU policy objectives in COM(2012)537, ‘Promoting cultural and creative sectors for growth and jobs in the EU’.

Proposals should include a business case and exploitation strategy, as outlined in the Introduction to the LEIT part of this Work Programme.

Cross-cutting Priorities:

Open Innovation

[1]See definition of the 'gender dimension approach' in the introduction of this Work Programme part.

Topic conditions and documents

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

    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, India, Japan, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Russia, Taiwan).
    described in part B and C of the General Annexes of the General Work Programme.

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


    3.1  Evaluation criteria and procedure, scoring and threshold:
    The criteria, scoring and threshold are described in General Annex H of the work programme.
    The following exceptions apply:

    For single-stage and second-stage evaluations, the threshold for the criteria Excellence and Impact will be 4. The overall threshold, applying to the sum of the three individual scores, will be 12.

    The procedure for setting a priority order for proposals with the same score is given in General Annex H of the work programme. The following exceptions apply:

    Under 3 (a)
    Proposals are first ranked in separate lists according to the topics against which they were submitted (‘topic ranked lists’). When comparing ex aequo proposals from different topics, proposals having a higher position in their respective 'topic ranked list' will be considered to have a higher priority in the overall ranked list.

    Under 3 (b)
    For all topics and types of action, the prioritisation will be done first on the basis of the score for Impact, and then on that for Excellence.

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

    Information on the outcome of two-stage evaluation:
          For stage 1: maximum 3 months from the deadline for submission.
          For stage 2: maximum 5 months from the deadline for submission.
    Signature of grant agreements: maximum 8 months from the deadline for submission.

    for the type of action under this topic

    Innovation Action:

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

    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.


    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.

    - 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.


    Legal basis: Horizon 2020 - Regulation of Establishment

    Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Rules for Participation

    Legal basis: Horizon 2020 Specific Programme

    H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: Introduction

    H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: Introduction to Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies (LEITs)

    H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: Nanotechnologies, advanced materials, advanced manufacturing and processing, biotechnology

    H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: Cross-cutting activities (Focus Areas)

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

    H2020 Work Programme 2016-17: General Annexes


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