Research & Innovation - Participant Portal


TOPIC : Supporting microbiome coordination and the International Bioeconomy Forum

Topic identifier: SFS-32-2018
Publication date: 27 October 2017

Types of action: CSA Coordination and support action
Opening date:
31 October 2017
Deadline: 13 February 2018 17:00:00

Time Zone : (Brussels time)
  Horizon 2020 H2020 website
Pillar: Societal Challenges
Work Programme Year: H2020-2018-2020
Topic Updates
  • 08 June 2018 16:18

    Letters informing on the results of the evaluation have been sent to applicants.

    Under the tab 'Topic conditions and documents' the following document is available in the last section "Additional documents": H2020-SFS-2018-1-single stage flash call info

  • 05 March 2018 11:50

    An overview of the number of proposals submitted is now available under the ‘Topic conditions & documents’ section on the topic page.

Topic Description
Specific Challenge:

Knowledge of the potential of microbial systems, or microbiomes, throughout the food chains, is seen as a promising means to ensuring the sustainability of our food system. Although a number of relevant European programmes and initiatives are currently running or are being launched, they are largely fragmented, implying a stringent need for coordinated action. This need for joint action at the European level can also be regarded in the broader picture of microbiome-related actions at the international level. A forum for regular, strategic international cooperation at multi-partner level could focus on building policy coherence and exploiting synergies between countries and regions. To this end, the European Commission launched in October 2016 the International Bioeconomy Forum (IBF), a flexible multilateral platform whereby European and global R&I partners would gather to discuss and act on common challenges in the bioeconomy, such as the microbiome. The bioeconomy has been incorporated in the strategic activities of a large number of countries in Europe and worldwide. Accordingly the IBF will be used as a platform to share ideas and experiences on bioeconomy policies, strategies and actions, fostering collaboration and joint activities that will promote innovation in key sectors.


Proposals should aim at a platform for collaboration and coordination across various microbiome-related research and innovation programmes, in Europe and worldwide, throughout the food systems and beyond, including both terrestrial and aquatic environments (e.g. linkages among microbiome related work in plants, animals, soils, marine and human health)[1]]. They should map the state of play in the different Member States, associated countries and third countries participating in the IBF, and propose strategic research agendas for future Microbiome activities addressing emerging technologies and political priorities. In line with the objectives of the EU strategy for international cooperation in research and innovation[2], proposals should also aim at supporting similar activities within other IBF working groups. Participation of relevant partners from third countries and international organisations is strongly encouraged.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU in the range of EUR 3 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:

In line with the EU Bioeconomy Strategy, in the short/medium term proposals will:

  • Improve coherence and reduce the overlap between national and EU funding in microbiome research; reinforce collaborations and knowledge exchange with international networks to promote coherence and applicability of microbiomes; help establish an internationally agreed microbiome definition, best practices and standards, consistent protocols and pipelines.
  • Improve the international cooperation framework of bioeconomy research programmes, thus creating the basis for the development of joint international research programmes and facilitate the alignment of international research agendas.
  • Exchange knowledge across the scientific and political community and ensure an efficient use of the available resources, while raising awareness of the bioeconomy at an international level.

In the long-term, proposals will impact on global challenges relevant to the bioeconomy world-wide through multilateral co-operation and broader international efforts towards the achievement of some ambitious Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Cross-cutting Priorities:

International cooperation
Socio-economic science and humanities
Blue Growth

[1]Relevant topics presented in the Work Programme are: SC1-BHC-03-2018 Exploiting research results and potential of the human microbiome for personalised prediction and prevention of disease, LC-SFS-03-2018 Microbiome applications for sustainable food systems, SFS-11-2018-2019 Anti-microbials and livestock production, […..


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. SME instrument: described in the Work Programme part "European Innovation Council (EIC)".


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


3. Evaluation:

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.

Information on the outcome of evaluation (two-stage call):
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.

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
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.

8. Additional documents:

1. Introduction WP 2018-20
9. Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine and maritime and inland water research and the bioeconomy WP 2018-20
18. Dissemination, Exploitation and Evaluation 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

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.


Additional documents

  • Flash call info - SFS single stage_en

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