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Assessment Process

The assessment process describes in the EUROCORES Scheme the review procedure of the applications for project proposals including the external Peer Review and the work of the Review Panel.

Associated Partner

A scientist based in a country, or associated with an organisation not participating in the EUROCORES Programme, and who is leading an Associated Project within a Collaborative Research Project is called an Associated Partner. Associated Partners must be “self-financing” and do not count towards the trans-national eligibility criteria defined in the EUROCORES programme Call for proposals, i.e. normally 3 Individual Projects (IPs) from 3 different countries for one Collaborative Research Project (CRP). 

An Associated Partner cannot act as Project Leader.

Associated Project (AP)

An Associated Project (AP) is a project within the Collaborative Research Project, which is led by an Associated Partner (see above). The AP is part of a Collaborative Research Project and will be assessed as such. An AP should bring added value to the proposed Collaborative Research Project.

The AP must be “self-financing”. As from 2009 this also applies to networking activities.

Collaborative Research Project (CRP)

The Collaborative Research Projects (CRPs) are the international research activities which make up a EUROCORES programme.

A CRP consists of a number of Individual Projects (IPs), each led by normally one Principal Investigator (PI).

Associated Projects may also be part of a CRP. Each CRP is represented by a Project Leader (PL). Each CRP should demonstrate a minimum level of trans-national collaboration as defined in the relevant Call for proposals of the EUROCORES programme. Associated Partners do not count towards the trans-national eligibility criteria.

Co-operating Partner

A scientist who is co-operating with a Principal Investigator but is not named in the CRP proposal and for her/his own purposes wants to be linked to the EUROCORES programme can become a Co-operating Partner. Normally these links are established after the CRPs are funded. She/he is not an official part of the CRP nor of the EUROCORES programme but, can be listed as a Co-operating Partner, e.g. on the ESF website of a EUROCORES programme. She/he is not automatically part of the EUROCORES Programme networking activities, but may participate on an ad-hoc self-financed basis. 

Declaration of Interest

Each person acting for the ESF as a Review Panel member or a referee will be asked to sign a declaration of interest and confidentiality. This declaration should cover avoidance of conflicts of interest in the assessment of proposals, mid-term and final reports and ensure that the information provided is treated confidentially.

ECRP (European Collaborative Research Projects) Scheme

The responsive-mode ECRP scheme supports multinational, interdisciplinary collaborative research projects in the social sciences. ECRP operates differently to typical EUROCORES programmes: there is no thematic orientation to its annual Call for proposals and therefore no theme competition stage or networking between the funded projects.  Please click here for further details.

Eligibility Criteria

The eligibility criteria are defined in each Call for proposals. Generally the following criteria can be observed:

  • Each Collaborative Research Project proposal has to involve a minimum of 3 different Principal Investigators (PIs) based in 3 different countries participating in the EUROCORES call for proposals.
  • A maximum of 50 % of all Principal Investigators in a Collaborative Research Project can come from one country.
  • In a Collaborative Research Project, the number of Associated Projects has to be smaller than the number of Individual Projects (Number of APs < Number of IPs).

ESF Member Organisations

A list of the European Science Foundation Member Organisations can be found on the ESF website.

EUROCORES Funding Organisations (EFOs)

Funding organisations that are participating in a EUROCORES Programme are called EUROCORES Funding Organisations (EFOs). In addition to the ESF Member Organisations, these can be other national funding organisations outside the ESF membership, e.g. ministries, ministerial agencies, private funding bodies, funding organisations at regional level etc.

EUROCORES Networking

A EUROCORES programme is expected to implement networking activities across the funded CRPs through science meetings such as workshops, conferences, schools etc.

The costs for these networking activities will be covered through networking funds provided by the ESF.

EUROCORES networking funds only cover activities involving more than one CRP. Networking within a CRP has to be covered out of the national budget. 


EUROCORES programme stands for EUROpean COllaborative RESearch programme. EUROCORES programmes operate in specific scientific research areas. The acronym is to be used as follows:

  • the EUROCORES Programme EuroDYNA

EUROCORES Programme Coordination

The coordination of a EUROCORES Programme is carried out by an ESF Science Officer and an ESF Administrative Coordinator.

The Science Officer is responsible for the scientific coordination and networking of the Collaborative Research Projects within a EUROCORES programme. He/she has a scientific background in the appropriate field of science. He/she is a member of the Scientific Committee and reports to the Management Committee (MC) and ESF.

The Administrative Coordinator is responsible for the day-to-day running as well as the overall budgetary and quality control of the programme according to the EUROCORES guidelines and procedures.


The EUROCORES Scheme is the overall framework for the development and running of EUROCORES programmes.

The EUROCORES Scheme sets standards and provides harmonised procedures for all EUROCORES programmes.

EUROCORES Support Contract

Until the end of 2008, coordination and networking by the European Science Foundation was funded through the EC FP6 programme, under contract no. ERAS-CT-2003-980409.

Since 2009, the National Funding Organisations have provided the funding for the scientific coordination and networking in addition to the research funding.


A EUROCORES Theme is an idea for a new EUROCORES Programme. New EUROCORES Theme Calls are no longer expected.

Evaluation Process

The evaluation process in the EUROCORES Scheme describes the process of evaluating the achievements of a running EUROCORES CRP or programme with respect to their set objectives or milestones. 

Individual Project (IP)

A research activity/project within a Collaborative Research Project which is led by a Principal Investigator (PI) and supported by a national EUROCORES Funding Organisation (EFO) is an Individual Project. The PI applies for national funding in the context of a CRP’s research objectives.

A minimum number of 3 Individual Projects make up a Collaborative Research Project. The IP budget request should include funds for networking within the Collaborative Research Project.

Management Committee (MC)

Mandate of the Management Committee:

  • Has overall responsibility for the EUROCORES Programme within the guidelines of the EUROCORES Scheme
  • Can request expert advice from the EUROCORES Scientific Committee, Review Panel or any other ad-hoc advisory group
  • Each MC member is responsible for liaison with their funding organisation, including supervision of the funding process for EUROCORES projects within their organisation.
  • Members may attend all meetings of the EUROCORES programme (Review Panel meetings, Scientific Committee meetings, science meetings) as observers

Members of the Management Committee are:

  • (Senior) science administrators from EUROCORES funding organisations (participating national funding organisations)
  • An ESF representative (normally the EUROCORES Science Officer)

The Chair is suggested by the ESF from amongst the membership of the Committee. The relevant ESF Science Officer may also attend meetings of the Management Committee. The ESF provides the secretariat to the Management Committee.

Principal Investigator (PI)

A scientist who leads an Individual Project (IP) is a Principal Investigator (PI). He/she applies via the EUROCORES CRP for funding from a national funding organisation which is participating in a EUROCORES Programme (EUROCORES Funding Organisation - EFO). He/she must be based in a country or associated with an organisation participating in the EUROCORES programme and eligible to apply to that organisation.

Project Leader (PL)

The Project Leader (PL) of a CRP is the main representative of the CRP. She/he is a Principal Investigator of an Individual Project in the CRP she/he represents.

She/he is normally the representative of the CRP to the ESF and in the Scientific Committee of the EUROCORES Programme. She/he is responsible for communication with the other Principal Investigators of her/his CRP. An Associated Partner cannot act as PL.

Project Member (PM)

A Project Member is a researcher (PhD student, post-doc researcher, senior scientist, technician etc.) who is funded by an Individual or Associated Project or is a “faculty / research staff member” working for an Individual Project. Project Members of IPs are eligible for support from the EUROCORES networking funds. Special care should be taken that “junior” Project Members are included in the networking activities of a EUROCORES Programme.

PMs of Associated Projects must be self-financing for the networking activities. 


A rapporteur is a Review Panel member assigned to a particular project. Normally 2 rapporteurs are assigned to each proposal. The rapporteurs are asked to read the proposals and the appropriate background material in detail and to report on the proposals and the background material to the whole Review Panel.


A referee is an internationally recognised expert in one of the scientific fields relevant to a given EUROCORES programme who is asked to give a written assessment of a CRP proposal.

Referees are asked to sign a declaration of interest before they referee a proposal.

Review Panel (RP)

The Review Panel of a EUROCORES programme is established when the Call for Proposals has been published. It is convened on request of the ESF during the Peer Review process and possibly afterwards.

Mandate of the Review Panel:

At the outline proposals stage, the Review Panel:

  • Selects outline proposals to be invited to submit full proposals, according to the criteria published in the Call for Proposals (sifting)
  • May give recommendations concerning further development of the proposals
  • Provides written comments (consensus report) to explain its decisions to the applicants

 At the full proposals stage, the Review Panel:

  • May give advice on the selection of referees for the assessment of full proposals (principally from a pool of referees provided by the EUROCORES Funding Organisations and the ESF) and may suggest additional referees, if necessary
  • Ranks and recommends proposals on the basis of assessments by external referees and, if relevant, applicant’ responses
  • Provides written comments to explain its decisions to the EUROCORES Funding Organisations and to the applicants

 During the running EUROCORES programme, the Review Panel:

  • Is part of the evaluation process of the overall EUROCORES programme on the basis of achievements of CRPs through Mid-term and Final Evaluations (additional independent external evaluation may be sought)
  • Advises the Management Committee on request.

Members of the Review Panel are:

  • International experts recommended by EUROCORES Funding Organisations, appointed by the ESF Office and approved by the ESF Science Advisory Board.

The Chair is appointed by the ESF from amongst the RP members. An ESF representative, who is not a member, attends RP meetings (normally the EUROCORES Programme Science Officer). MC members may attend as observers. The ESF provides the secretariat to the Review Panel.

Scientific Committee (SC)

The Scientific Committee of a EUROCORES programme is established once the funding of the CRPs has started. The first meeting of the Scientific Committee  should mark the start of the networking phase of the EUROCORES Programme.

Members of the Scientific Committee are:

  • Project Leaders (or another representative from each CRP)
  • an ESF representative (normally the EUROCORES Programme Science Officer)
  • One scientific member appointed by the ESF (optional)

The Chair is nominated by the ESF from amongst the Scientific Committee membership.

The ESF provides the secretariat to the Scientific Committee.

The Scientific Committee:

  • Is responsible for proposing and agreeing on the networking policy of the EUROCORES Programme taking into account networking requests from Principal Investigators
  • Provides scientific guidance and coordination
  • Reports to the Management Committee through the EUROCORES Programme Science Officer
  • Meets once per year (normally)

Scientific Committee members represent the Principal Investigators, Associated Partners and Project Members of a CRP and are responsible for the communication flow between them.