How to Write a Competitive FP7 Proposal

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  • Photo Credit: kevindooley on Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/pagedooley/2810314243/
  • Photo Credit: Batikart on flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/batiks/2910222348/
















































  • PhotoCredit: dodriscoll on Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/7332902@N05/3234469327/

  • How to Write a Competitive FP7 Proposal

    1. 1. TSSG Positioning • Basic Research (HEA, SFI)  One of the TOP academic centre's in Ireland for telecommunications • Applied Research (EU FP7)  EU FP7 – participating in 11 projects  Ranked Top 10 institute in Europe for Future Internet research 2
    2. 2. TSSG Positioning Contd… • Commercialisation (EI)  One of the top ICT research groups for commercialisation  Leading edge innovation & technology development in: IMS Web 2.0 Mobile Commercial ‘Spin-offs’  Early stage technology clusters emerging based around TSSG technology 3
    3. 3. How to write a competitive FP7 proposal (ICT) 4
    4. 4. The views of an Expert 5
    5. 5. The views of an Expert 5
    6. 6. Want an FP7 Wizard? 6
    7. 7. Want an FP7 Wizard? 6
    8. 8. What’s to be covered • Pointers and approach on how to write a competitive proposal for FP7. • Guidelines on the evaluation criteria. • Highlight common problems. 7
    9. 9. How it’s going to be covered 8
    10. 10. How it’s going to be covered • 4 Phases of Proposal Writing 8
    11. 11. How it’s going to be covered • 4 Phases of Proposal Writing – Inception Phase 8
    12. 12. How it’s going to be covered • 4 Phases of Proposal Writing – Inception Phase • Project Scope, Objectives and Partners 8
    13. 13. How it’s going to be covered • 4 Phases of Proposal Writing – Inception Phase • Project Scope, Objectives and Partners – Elaboration Phase 8
    14. 14. How it’s going to be covered • 4 Phases of Proposal Writing – Inception Phase • Project Scope, Objectives and Partners – Elaboration Phase • Specify the technological direction for this proposal 8
    15. 15. How it’s going to be covered • 4 Phases of Proposal Writing – Inception Phase • Project Scope, Objectives and Partners – Elaboration Phase • Specify the technological direction for this proposal – Construction Phase 8
    16. 16. How it’s going to be covered • 4 Phases of Proposal Writing – Inception Phase • Project Scope, Objectives and Partners – Elaboration Phase • Specify the technological direction for this proposal – Construction Phase • Break the proposal apart 8
    17. 17. How it’s going to be covered • 4 Phases of Proposal Writing – Inception Phase • Project Scope, Objectives and Partners – Elaboration Phase • Specify the technological direction for this proposal – Construction Phase • Break the proposal apart – Submission Phase 8
    18. 18. How it’s going to be covered • 4 Phases of Proposal Writing – Inception Phase • Project Scope, Objectives and Partners – Elaboration Phase • Specify the technological direction for this proposal – Construction Phase • Break the proposal apart – Submission Phase • Put a clear and concise proposal together 8
    19. 19. Proposal Inception Phase “It takes two to tango” 9
    20. 20. Inception Phase Where do proposals come from? • It can be: – Your own research idea – Shared idea with someone else – A follow on or specialisation from an existing or previous project 10
    21. 21. Inception Phase Where do proposals come from? • It can be: – Your own research idea – Shared idea with someone else – A follow on or specialisation from an existing or previous project You need to construct proposal and form consortium from scratch 10
    22. 22. Inception Phase Where do proposals come from? • It can be: – Your own research idea – Shared idea with someone else – A follow on or specialisation from an existing or previous project You need to construct proposal and form consortium from scratch 10
    23. 23. Inception Phase Where do proposals come from? • It can be: – Your own research idea – Shared idea with someone else – A follow on or specialisation from an existing or previous project You need to construct proposal and form consortium from scratch Proposal and consortium typically already exist 10
    24. 24. Inception Phase Constructing a proposal from scratch • Identify a co-partner to work with. – Look to fellow Irish participants. • Create a 2 page flyer – Project Scope and Objectives. – Highlight current state of the art. – Identify key use cases for the technology. – Identify key partner profiles and roles. – Ensure that the idea is consistent with the objectives and targets in the published work programme call text. 11
    25. 25. Inception Phase Building the consortium • Needs to be a balance of academic & industrial partners. • Partners need to have the right expertise and have complimentary skills. • Good to have a flagship partner active in the area of the proposal, for example, a proposal relating to telecoms would typically require an operator and/or an equipment vendor. 12
    26. 26. Inception Phase Building the consortium • Host conference calls – When there’s more than 3 partners start regular conference calls. – Give each new participant a chance to explain • What they do now. • What they want to do in the future. – Rebuild 2-pager flyer into 5 page position document • Assign one editor. • Refine project concept & objectives. • Identify missing/weaknesses in concept and consortium • For ICT define project type – IP, STREP (if not already a CSA). • For non-ICT refer to the specific call 13
    27. 27. Inception Phase Building the consortium • Decide whether you need to go to – EC Proposers Day. – EC Consortation meetings. – European Technology Platform meetings. • Always make it a point to meet EC Project Officers at these events. – Arrange a follow up one to one meeting. 14
    28. 28. Proposal Elaboration Phase “So what exactly is this project?” 15
    29. 29. Elaboration Phase Documenting the Proposal • Define what collaboration tools you are going to use – e.g. Wiki, FTP, – Email distribution lists, – How partners are to provide input and feedback • Agree Proposal Name and Logo • Agree Project Type – IP, STREP 16
    30. 30. Elaboration Phase Create Proposal Roadmap • Coordinator is project manager and editor. • Proposal preparation should follow a schedule and have milestones. • There should be a fair division of work between partners. • Allow time for reviews and revisions. • Schedule more regular progress meetings (teleconferences) and a face to face 17
    31. 31. Elaboration Phase Create Proposal Roadmap 18
    32. 32. Elaboration Phase Go through EC Work Programme • Confirm all the EU rules and guidelines for this call. • Make sure your project type is applicable (IP, STREP or CSA). • Highlight key words in the programme that link to your proposal. • Note the impact requested by the EC – For the EC objective, EC challenge and overall work programme goals. • Review Evaluation Criteria. 19
    33. 33. Elaboration Phase Define the Project Use Case(s) • The Use Case(s) must show the Impact of this project – Possible domains in ICT to cover include: • Utilities and Environment • eHealth • Smart Energy Grid • Transport, Mobility and Logistics • Content Management 20
    34. 34. Elaboration Phase Arrange Partner Meeting • Must have – Presentable Concept & Objectives. – Complete Use Case(s). – Initial Work Package breakdown. • Go through Part B template • Leave the meeting with – Agreed project objectives. – Work package structure. – Work package leaders. 21
    35. 35. Elaboration Collect Administrative Phase Information • PIC numbers • Establish partner direct and indirect costs • Partner Profiles • Partner Interests • Register proposal on the EPSS – Partners must fill out the A2 form, get this done as soon as possible • Close off the partner search 22
    36. 36. Proposal Construction Phase “Break the whole thing apart” 23
    37. 37. Construction Template for Work Package Phase Description • Objectives • Tasks – Role of contributing partners • Deliverables • Milestones • State-of-Art – With References • Impact 24
    38. 38. Construction Phase 25
    39. 39. Construction Phase 26
    40. 40. Construction Actual review comments on Phase Scientific and/or technological excellence • What you want to see – The concept proposed is sound. The objectives are clearly defined, well focused to produce ........... – The objectives are in line with the objectives of the call. The proposal presents a clear description of the current state of the art. The proposal demonstrates a significant advance beyond the current state of the art by combining existing technologies with new ones to be developed in the course of the proposal – What you don’t want to see – The proposal lists some objectives, but they lack concreteness. The description of the state-of-the-art is not complete. 27
    41. 41. Construction Agree Appropriate Management Phase Structure and Procedures 28
    42. 42. Construction Actual review comments on Phase Management • What you want to see – The individual participants combine an excellent set of skills and experience in field. Some participants are also involved in important standard setting bodies such as ITU and IETF. There is good balance in the consortium between industry, academia, research institutes and SMEs. The proposal clearly documents the successful cooperation that the partners have had in the past in a variety of configurations and projects. • What you don’t want to see – The workplan and WP structure are described well, but the task scheduling is not convincing. – The roles of the key participants within the project (WP leader, task leader, researcher etc) are not sufficiently explained. – The contribution and role of the subcontractor are unclear. 29
    43. 43. Construction Agree the Innovation, Impact Phase and Exploitation • Coordinator should hold peer-to-peer conversations with each partner. • Allow for open collaboration, conversations and changes. – Lots of changes. • Build up individual submissions into a coherent picture for the project. – Make sure the industrial partners are contributing and reviewing the Impact 30
    44. 44. Construction Actual review comments on Phase Impact • What you want to see – The proposal is of high potential impact at a European and global level and is in line with the expected impact of the call. – The proposal shows appropriateness of measures for spreading excellence, exploiting results and disseminating knowledge through engagement with stakeholders and the public at large. The measures for exploiting the proposal results are clearly defined. • What you don’t want to see – The general impact potential is low and mainly restricted to a specific sector. Dissemination is sufficient for the proposed project. Although the results will be Open Source, there is no appropriate exploitation strategy presented. – Individual exploitation plans are standard and do not lead to a 31
    45. 45. Construction Phase Get the Budget Sheet in place • Discuss and agree a total budget for the project – Review existing projects in the programme • And start the process of looking at – Overall person-month cost per partner – Travel costs – Equipment Costs – Audit Costs – Indirect (Overhead) Costs • And make sure you know how each partner applies their overhead 32
    46. 46. Construction Phase Individual Partner Budget Sheet 33
    47. 47. Construction Phase Overall Budget Sheet 34
    48. 48. Proposal Submission Phase “Bring the whole thing together” 35
    49. 49. Construction Phase What you need in the Part B • Concept & Objectives – Does it convey the main pitch for the proposal. • Progress Beyond SOTA – Needs to display knowledge of current SOTA and give a convincing argument that proposal moves beyond this • Project Management – Work plan, work package structure, division of work between partners and budget calculation – This section is particular responsibility of coordinator and is the most time consuming! 36
    50. 50. Construction Phase What you need in the Part B • Management Structure – How project management will work and processes to be followed - this can follow an established template • Individual Participants – overview of partners, their skills & experience • Consortium as a whole – Why consortium in total has the correct match of skills and resources to be successful • Resources committed – summary of resources committed by consortium 37
    51. 51. Construction Phase What you need in the Part B • Impact – This is an important section as it argues how the overall proposal will impact society. This needs to reference the text of the objectives & targets • Dissemination – external publications, exploitation plans & IP management 38
    52. 52. Construction Phase Identify what’s missing • There are 9 parts – what’s falling behind schedule? • Finalise the Project Gantt Chart 39
    53. 53. Construction Phase Coordinator Take Control • At this stage the coordinator needs to take control as overall editor – And start to become a dictator! • Bring the work packages together • Close off the Concept and Objectives • Close off the State-of-Art Section • Close off the Impact Section 40
    54. 54. Construction Phase Finalise the Budget • Maintain master workbook for the budget • Stick to originally agreed target budget for the project • Complete WP Descriptions and Tasks Assignments. – These will change based on the budget discussions • Load Budget A3 forms to the EPSS 41
    55. 55. Construction Phase Get into revision mode • Load your first draft of the Part B onto the EPSS • Validate the full proposal and submit • Shorten Everything – No matter what you do there will be unnecessary text in the sections for • Concept & Objectives – Consider what part of the State-of-Art can be moved to an Annex • Management • Impact 42
    56. 56. Construction Revise / Submit - Revise / Phase Submit • Submit a complete version at a very early stage • Submit often 43
    57. 57. Construction Phase The proposal is submitted 44
    58. 58. Contact Details Miguel Ponce de Leon TSSG Offices: Research Manager TSSG (Headquarters) TSSG, WIT ArcLabs Research & Innovation Building miguelpdl@tssg.org +353 51 302952 (w) WIT West Campus, Carriganore Co. Waterford, Ireland www.tssg.org/people/miguelpdl Slides 11, 13, 19, 38, 39, 40 provided by Robert TSSG (Dublin) Mullins Digital Depot, Roe Lane The Digital Hub Dublin 8, Ireland A recording of this presentation can be found at https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/ 468412401 Photo Credit Slide 4: kevindooley on Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/pagedooley/ 2810314243/ Photo Credit Slide 6: Batikart on flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/batiks/2910222348/ 45

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