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Deadline: Apr 16, 2020  
- 10 days

 Marine and Coast
 Maritime Affaires and Fisheries
 Natural Resources
 Environmental protection

1.1. Objectives of the ERA-NET Cofund

The overall goal of the proposed ERA-NET Cofund AquaticPollutants is to strengthen the European Research Area (ERA) in the field of clean and healthy aquatic ecosystems and to leverage untapped potential in the collaboration between the freshwater, marine and health research areas. The ERA-NET Cofund AquaticPollutants is a network of 32 ministries, authorities and funding organisations from 26 countries responsible for funding research and innovation projects in the field of clean and healthy aquatic ecosystems. . This joint call is being implemented by the funding organisations with co-funding from the European Union Horizon 2020 programme for research and innovation (ECGA No. 869178-AquaticPollutants).

Within the framework of AquaticPollutants the Joint Programming Initiatives (JPIs) on Water, Oceans and Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) are working closely together. A multidisciplinary approach has been set up, which brings together the research needs of the freshwater sector, the marine sector and the health sector to carry out a Joint Transnational Call (JTC) and complementary Additional Activities. This call will support the research communities of those three research fields to work together and create synergies for joint approaches.

1.2. Objectives of the Joint Transnational Call

The European Water Framework Directive (WFD), the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) and the newly adopted European Green Deal, all require the European Union member states to reach good environmental status of their aquatic ecosystems (inland - freshwater and groundwater - and marine, including sediments). The European One Health Action Plan against AMR supports the EU and its Member States in delivering innovative, effective and sustainable responses to AMR, especially to reduce the emergence and spread of AMR and to increase the development and availability of new, effective antimicrobials inside and outside the EU. On a global scale, the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have set out a sustainable blueprint for the international community to improve human health, ensure provision of safe water for all and safeguard both marine and freshwater ecosystems by 2030. In addition, the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Action plan on antimicrobial resistance (2015) outlines the need to strengthen the knowledge and evidence base through surveillance and research and to reduce the incidence of infection through effective sanitation, hygiene and infection prevention measures. Despite these transnational ambitions, there are still major risks associated with the occurrence of emerging pollutants, pathogens and antimicrobial resistant bacteria, in our water bodies and oceans that may impact all of society. To tackle these challenges in a comprehensive way and to develop multidisciplinary and practical solutions for the provision of safe drinking water and healthy aquatic environments, the three JPIs on Water, Oceans and AMR are working together to strengthen collaboration in a joint research Call on Aquatic Pollutants.

Emerging pollutants or contaminants of emerging concern (CEC - please see Definition in Glossary) are detected in the aquatic environment at low concentrations. The spectrum of these pollutants is broad and they derive from anthropogenic sources, especially from consumer products, urban areas, agriculture, animal husbandry farms, industry and maritime activities, and consequently end up in our rivers, estuaries and coastal ecosystems. These CEC and their transformation products are persistent and widely distributed and have been qualified as a risk to human health and environmental ecosystems that urgently needs to be addressed.

The occurrence of pathogens and CECs in water resources is one of the most serious risks in our environment and is considered a major factor particularly in the degradation of water quality. Antimicrobial resistant organisms and genes are now widespread throughout the environment and pose a serious emerging risk for human health and well-being. Antimicrobial resistant bacteria enter the aquatic ecosystems through effluents from untreated domestic sewage, wastewater treatment plants, hospitals, pharmaceutical production and stock farming including aquaculture and the risk of resistant bacteria crossing the human-animal barrier. Pathogens, CECs and other pollutants do not recognize geographic borders making this a global challenge. However, the most unprotected and vulnerable populations to pollutants and pathogens present in water resources are found in low- and middle-income countries and regions. Therefore, the consideration of local contexts and inclusion of researchers from and research in these countries and regions is of particular importance.


Some of these pollutants and pathogens are known to harm aquatic ecosystems even at very low concentrations and in turn negatively influence the provision of safe and clean water for drinking water purposes. In aquatic organisms, serving as staple food, pollutants and antimicrobial resistant bacteria can accumulate and spread, and affect human or animal health or enter the food chain, causing further secondary effects.

The input of these harmful substances into the aquatic environment must be avoided. This can be done by identifying the sources and assessing the corresponding practical measures, such as sustainable production methods and responsible handling of emerging pollutants. Further understanding and analysis of the behaviour of such pollutants, pathogens and antimicrobial resistant bacteria needs to be undertaken. Appropriate strategies for their detection and monitoring and solutions for preventing their spread and/or their removal need to be further developed. This will underpin strong and much needed policy and enforcement and inform appropriate decision-making.

To undertake such actions, a holistic catchment approach for a better understanding of the ecological and human and animal health effects is necessary. The whole water cycle, from the sources through the river basins and eventually to the estuaries and oceans, has to be considered. This approach has to include soil and groundwater transport as well as potential atmospheric pathways that these pollutants may take. The effects to the human and animal health, the transport and transmission of harmful substances from the freshwater and marine environment to organisms via the food chain also need to be taken into account.

In addition to the research and activities funded under the One Health European Joint Programming (EJP), the three participating JPIs have already implemented several activities dealing with the topics on risk management, CECs and antimicrobial resistant bacteria, for example the Water JPI Pilot Call 2013 on emerging contaminants, the 2015 Water JPI Joint Call on research and innovation for developing technological solutions and services for water systems, the 2016 Water JPI Joint Call on the sustainable management of water resources in agriculture, forestry and freshwater aquaculture sectors; the JPI AMR transmission dynamic call 2016, JPI AMR intervention call 2017, the JPI AMR Call on Diagnostics & Surveillance 2019, the JPI Oceans micro-plastics calls 2015 and 2018 (considering their functions in pollutant migration), the MarTERA calls 2017 and 2019 and the EC research funding programmes (in particular FP7 and Horizon 2020). Furthermore, the actions carried out by the NORMAN Network and the COST action NEREUS should be considered. Results and expertise already developed from these previous and other relevant activities (e.g WHO Global Observatory on Health R&D) should be built on and considered within this call.

The main research and innovation objectives of the AquaticPollutants 2020 Joint Transnational Call are:

  • to establish integrated and cross-sectoral approaches for risk management combining the research areas of emerging pollutants, pathogens and antimicrobial resistance under the overall topic “from the source to the mouth“;

  • to analyse the spread of CECs and pathogens related to antimicrobial resistance from the different sources (e.g. urban areas) that leads to impacts and risks on the aquatic ecosystem, environment and human health;

  • to describe the transformation of such CECs and pathogens and their effects when entering the different aquatic systems and accumulating in the food chain;

  • to improve strategies and develop/ evaluate technologies (incl. digital technologies) for reducing CECs and pathogens at the sources, on their pathways and end-of-pipe; and

  • to develop/ integrate innovative methodologies and tools to allow policy-makers to develop more effective policies and efficient regulations.



2. Joint Transnational Call Description

2.1. Strategic aim of the Joint Transnational Call

The 2020 Joint Transnational Call “Risks posed to human health and the environment by pollutants and pathogens present in water resources” within the ERA-NET Cofund AquaticPollutants aims to address research and innovation to support the implementation of the global, EU and national water and health policies contributing to the strategic objectives of the JPIs on Water, Oceans and AMR. The following themes for the call are targeted in the thematic area from the Strategic Research and Innovation Agendas of the three JPIs:

  •   “Developing Safe Water Systems for Citizens” of the Water JPI Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda

  •   “Interdisciplinary Research for Good Environmental Status” of the JPI Oceans Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda

  •   Priority topics “Diagnostics”, “Surveillance”, “Environment” and “Interventions” of the JPI AMR Strategic Research Agenda.

2.2. Theme of the Joint Transnational Call

Research & innovation proposals are invited to respond to at least one of the following themes:

Theme 1 – Measuring - Environmental behaviour of contaminants of emerging concern (CECs), pathogens and antimicrobial resistant bacteria in aquatic ecosystems

Subtheme 1.1 - Assessment of the significance of different potential sources, reservoirs and pathways of CECs and pathogens including antimicrobial resistant bacteria

Proposals may cover:

  •   Estimating the entry point of CECs and pathogens into the environment, with indication of the matrix to be analysed (water, sediment, biota) with a view to emission control at local and regional levels; and/or

  •   Establishment of indicators and tracers allowing for the identification of sources and pathways of contamination/pollution.

Subtheme 1.2 - Understanding and predicting the environmental and cumulative behaviours of contaminants of emerging concern (CECs) and pathogens including antimicrobial resistant bacteria, including the development of tools and digital solutions

Proposals may cover:

  •   Modelling of transport processes and fate of CECs and pathogens; and/or

  •   Understanding the processes involved in the increase and degradation of contaminants of emerging

    concern (CECs) and pathogens and degradation/transformation products; and/or

  •   Understanding of the extent to which CECs and pathogens are removed or modified, e. g. through water treatment plants or natural processes in soils, sediments and aquatic systems; and/or

  •   Assessing the transfer time of different pollutants, as well as understanding the processes during transfer within the various compartments and from inland water to oceans; and/or

  •   Assessing retention and degradation capacity of aquatic ecosystems; and/or

  •   Identification of cumulative effects and mixtures; and/or

  •   Assessing the biodegradation of antibiotics to estimate and anticipate antibiotic resistance transmission rates and assessing gene transfer; and/or

  •   Evaluation of the transmission and changes of AMR and pathogens in aquatic ecosystems.

Theme 2 – Evaluating - Risk Assessment and Management of contaminants of emerging concern (CECs), pathogens and antimicrobial resistant bacteria from aquatic ecosystems (inland, coastal and marine) to human health and environment

Subtheme 2.1 - Characterising the exposure routes and effects of CECs and pathogens including antimicrobial resistant bacteria, on aquatic ecosystems and on human health

Proposals may cover:

  •   Estimation of the transmission of pollutants and pathogens to and from the aquatic environment, biota and humans as well as through the food chain (trophic transfer) and via water exposures; and/or

  •   Understanding the factors that control the bioavailability and fate of emerging pollutants, pathogens and antimicrobial resistant bacteria in organisms such as uptake, mode of action, biological end-points; and/or

  •   Identification of human key-target groups with risk of higher exposure.
    Subtheme 2.2 - Development of integrated risk assessment and risk management procedures Proposals may cover:

  •   Identification and selection of the main pollutants of emergent concern most widely distributed in aquatic environments, in order to establish a priority list of pollutants to be included into the risk management and monitoring plans; and/or

  •   Including the effect of long-term exposure, the cumulative effects and the interplay between different pollutants acting with adverse impacts (on aquatic ecosystems as well as on human health) and antibiotics selecting for resistance in the environment; and/or

  •   Assessing the occurrence and the toxicity of CEC in aquatic ecosystems; Expanding our knowledge base on antibiotic resistance in aquatic ecosystems; to establish thresholds values in continental, marine ecosystems and biota; and/or

  •   Determination of the incremental health risk caused by environmental exposure to antibiotic resistant bacteria; Development and application of an integrated approach (chemical and biological) to reducing these risks; and/or

  •   Determination of the incremental health risk caused by environmental exposures to antibiotic resistant bacteria; and/or

  •   Assessing the occurrence of CECs in seafood, developing strategies to remove/reduce contaminants from seafood.

Subtheme 2.3 - Parameters and strategies for monitoring potential antimicrobial resistant bacteria

Proposals may cover:

  •  Definition and validation of parameters and strategies for monitoring potential antibiotic resistant bacteria in aquatic environments from different sources and in relation with potential uses, and for defining threshold values and local guidelines for emitting sources and their organisations on maximum permissible contamination levels in aquatic ecosystems.

Theme 3 – Taking Actions - Strategies to reduce contaminants of emerging concern (CECs), pathogens and antimicrobial resistant bacteria in aquatic ecosystems (inland, coastal and marine)

Subtheme 3.1 – Implementation of strategies to reduce CECs and pathogens, including antimicrobial resistant bacteria at the source

Proposals may cover:

 Reduction at the source and/or downstream mitigation actions; both technical options and management aspects contributing to reduction at the source - such as end products, effects and acceptance, reduction of consumption, improve prudent and rational use of antibiotics.

Subtheme 3.2 – Development of methods for preventing the spread of CECs and pathogens, including antimicrobial resistant bacteria

Proposals may cover:

 Improvement of combined treatments and sustainable treatment solutions leading to lower prevalence and spread of antimicrobial resistance, not only focussed in the removal of emerging pollutants.

Subtheme 3.3 – Assessment of management measures and technologies to reduce the impact of CECs and pathogens including antimicrobial resistant bacteria, on water quality

Proposals may cover:

  •   Assessment of implemented management measures and technologies to reduce the impact of CECs and pathogens including antimicrobial resistant bacteria; and/or

  •   Developing suitable indicator sets of established parameters for monitoring treatment processes; and/or

  •  Assessment of the contribution of management practices and treatment technologies in the formation of by-products or additional antimicrobial resistant bacteria during the processes, especially in wastewater treatment and reuse processes.

2.3. Scope of the Joint Transnational Call

  •   Emerging pollutants, pathogens and materials linked to antimicrobial resistance, their risks for human health and aquatic ecosystems, and the transfer between inland and marine environments will be the main topic of the call.

  •   It is not mandatory to address emerging pollutants, pathogens and antimicrobial resistant bacteria simultaneously in one proposal.

  •  Micro-plastics will not be subject to the call.
    Annex B and C of this document provide a matrix of the themes funded by each participating country/region and the national regulations.

2.4. Transdisciplinary approach & expected impacts

Tackling societal challenges always requires a transdisciplinary approach. Therefore, proposals should emphasize the participation of stakeholders and end-users (including industry) in research, and innovation actions (participatory approaches).

Trans-disciplinary proposals including communication, mobility and education measures as well as data management approaches are recommended. Furthermore, it is expected, that proposals come up with contributions to new standards and norms. Proposals should showcase their research and innovation (R&I) in local or regional case studies and support the process of transferring and disseminating results to other regions also including low- and middle-income countries.

Furthermore, the research works should address related European and international policies and contribute to the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations (UN SDG).

The expected impact of the 2020 Joint Transnational Call is to:

  •   Produce knowledge and innovative solutions in the scientific area of the three JPIs.

  •   Enhance innovation capacity and integration and transfer of new knowledge.

  •   Strengthen the competitiveness and growth of companies by developing innovations meeting the needs of European and global markets, including low- and middle-income countries and regions, and where relevant, by delivering such innovations to the public and private markets, including public administrators (public executive bodies) and civil society organisations.

  •   Support the development of technological solutions and services for the implementation of international, EU and national policies in the water, marine, health and agricultural or environmental sector.

  •   Support the generation of standardisation, regulation and the valorisation of research results.

  •   Explicitly address the communication to society and knowledge transfer to stakeholders for future implementation (e.g. best practice models).

  •   Help improving the scientific quality and societal relevance of the knowledge produced, technology and/or innovation in different socio-economic settings.

  •   Support the implementation of the UN SDGs.

  •   Encourage international cooperation and participation of the water, health and maritime community including partners from low- and middle-income countries and regions.



3. Call Structure

3.1. Participating countries

A total of 32 Funding Partner Organisations (FPOs) from 26 countries and 3 JPIs have agreed to launch a Joint Transnational Call for R&I proposals on the topic “Risks posed to human health and the environment by pollutants and pathogens present in water resources” in February 2020.

The research projects initiated by this call can apply for funding or will get guidance (see national regulations) from the partner institutions of the AquaticPollutants consortium listed in Annex C. The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) will support researchers from African countries as specified in the national regulations. The participation of applicants from other countries is allowed, if they have their own separate source of funding or funds by another source is guaranteed (i.e. by a national or international funding organisation). In this case, the commitment of this must be provided upon submitting the pre-proposal. For more information on eligibility of international research institutions please see chapter 4.3.

Applicants should note that, in some countries, several funding organisations participate in the call with different organisational rules and priorities. Applicants must pay attention to the national regulations and if questions arise, it is highly recommended to contact the NCPs before submitting a pre-proposal and full proposal.

3.2. Financial Commitment

A total of approx. 22,6 million Euro has been provisionally allocated for this Joint Transnational Call by the FPOs (Table 1). These funds will be used for R&I activities carried out by researchers, institutions and companies according to the funding rules and legal frameworks of their respective FPOs.

Partners applying in a consortium cannot request more than their relevant FPO stated in the national/regional regulations in chapter 4.2 and as listed in Annex C.




3.3. Call Process

The Joint Transnational Call will be advertised online from the following web pages: Online Submission Platform;
Water JPI -; JPI Oceans -; JPI AMR -

The application process consists of two consecutive steps:

Step 1:

The Consortium Coordinator must submit a pre-proposal on behalf of the consortium, providing key data on the proposed project. The deadline for the submission of the pre-proposal is 16.04.2020, 17:00 CEST (Berlin time).

Figure 1: Step 1 process

Step 2:

The Consortium Coordinator must submit a full proposal on behalf of the consortium. The deadline for full proposal submission is 14.08.2020, 17:00 CEST (Berlin time).

Figure 2: Step 2 process


The Annexes of this document provide the contact information of the NCPs in each participating country/region and the national regulations. It is required that each partner in a consortium checks their national/regional eligibility regulations and contacts his/her NCP(s) to be informed about the rules in his/her country/region prior to submission of a pre-proposal and a full proposal.


3.4. Dates and deadlines

Time Schedule of the Joint Transnational Call

First Step: Submission of pre-proposals

Mid March 2020

Webinar to clarify procedures with NCPs and Call Secretariat

16 April 2020 (17:00 CEST)

Deadline submission of the pre-proposals

June 2020

Communication of eligibility check and evaluation outcomes to the Consortium Coordinator

Second Step: Submission of the full proposals

14 August 2020 (17:00 CEST)

Deadline submission of the full proposals

October 2020

Notification of evaluation outcomes and project selection to Consortium Coordinator

October 2020

Start of the contract negotiations with FPOs

March 2021

Start of the research & innovation projects


3.5. Confidentiality & Conflict of interest

Research plans (pre-proposals and full-proposals), abstracts, and evaluation statements are confidential documents. Proposal documents are therefore handled and stored with due care and confidentiality.

AquaticPollutants consortium and its Call Secretariat ensures complete confidentiality to applicants during the evaluation process, i.e. the proposals will only be available to the national/regional funding organisations and the mandated experts responsible for the evaluation of the proposal. Experts appointed for the evaluation will sign a confidentiality agreement and will be asked to declare any conflict of interest. The proposals will be handled by the AquaticPollutants Call Secretariat. Each of the funding organizations will subsequently handle projects approved for funding. Accordingly, national law will govern. Projects approved for funding will be governed by the confidentiality rules in the national law of the funding organisations.

The publishable information of the projects selected for funding as listed in section 0 will be published at the end of the call process.

3.6. Publishable Information

A list of the funded projects will be published at the end of the call process (once the projects have been selected). Therefore applicants should be aware that the following information from the proposals may be published by AquaticPollutants and FPOs for promotional purposes: (1) Project Title and Project Acronym, (2) Publishable abstract, (3) Duration of the project, (4) Total costs and total funding of the research project, (5) Organisation name and country of each partner, (5) Name of the Project Coordinator.


Each of the funding organizations will subsequently handle projects approved for funding. Accordingly, national law will govern. Projects approved for funding will be governed by the confidentiality rules in the national law of the funding organisations.

3.7. Privacy Policy

The Online Submission Tool provides information about the Privacy Policy. By submitting the application, the Consortium Coordinator and partners agree to the use, the share (for specific purposes: e.g. evaluation, for future nomination of experts, AquaticPollutants’ specific communication) and the storage of the information according to the Privacy Policy and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Further information on Privacy Policy is presented on the Online Submission Platform and the according JPI Websites.



4. Eligibility criteria

Partners should note that the general eligibility criteria (4.1) and the national regulations (4.2) are decisive for the evaluation step. Before submitting an application, the Consortium Coordinator should verify that all partners of the consortium have read their corresponding national/regional regulations. Coordinators and project partners must be aware that some national funding agencies require the submission of national documents in addition to the international pre-proposal.

Proposals, which do not meet all 2020 Joint Transnational Call general eligibility criteria (4.1), will be declined without further review. Non-eligibility of a partner applying for funding in a proposal may cause the rejection of the entire proposal without further review.

Proposals passing the eligibility check will be forwarded to the evaluators for assessment. The Call Secretariat (CS), on behalf of the Call Steering Committee (CSC), will communicate the results of the eligibility check and the decisions taken to the coordinator of each consortium.

4.1. General eligibility check

The general eligibility criteria are summarized in Table 2. In the case of not fulfilling these requirements, the proposal will not be considered for funding

Please be aware that partners from countries/regions participating in the call must also meet the national criteria as outlined in the national regulations.

4.2. National/regional eligibility criteria

In addition to the general eligibility criteria, each project partner must ensure that his/her contribution to the overall project conforms to:

 Where applicable, relevance of the proposal to the topic(s)/subtopic(s) of national/regional programmes and strategies;

  •   Compliance with national/regional funding criteria and regulations; and

  •   Compliance with limits to budget requests.

    The table in Annex C describes important restrictions related to each national/regional regulation.

    An empty cell means that no specific rules apply to that criterion. ATTENTION!: means that you need to check the corresponding national/regional regulations available in the 2020 Joint Transnational Call website and/or on the FPOs’ website.

4.3. Eligibility of international research institutions & Advisory Board members of the JPIs

The following eligibility rules count for international research institutions:

  •   The Joint Research Centre (JRC) can participate in a proposal as a partner. Coordinating the proposal is not possible, since they do not “belong” to any FPO country. They will have to participate at their own expenses (as in Framework Programmes and Horizon 2020) (they are not, as stated above, an eligible institution for any of the FPOs). They will not count in the "three different eligible entities" rule from three different FPO countries for eligibility purposes.

  •   Partners from countries not participating in the Call may join consortia (but not as coordinator), but participation will be at the institutions' own expense. Moreover, such partners will have to demonstrate in the proposal that they will achieve the related tasks. The formal signed letter of availability of funds should be included in the pre-proposal as an annex.

  •   International institutions, e.g. UN institutions, need to investigate their respective national eligibility guidelines for national and/or global funding.

  •   Members of the Advisory Boards of the three JPIs can apply to the Joint Transnational Call as participant in a project for funding, but not as a project coordinator. The direct involvement of Advisory Board members in proposals will limit their potential role as advisors to the JPI activities related to the Joint Calls.

Table 2: General Eligibility Criteria



Proposals must address one main theme but may also include several themes described in section 2.2

Proposals must address at least one of the entire sub-themes – Applicants are encouraged to integrate more than one sub-theme in their proposals;

Topics of the proposals must be in the scope of the Joint Transnational Call.

Consortium composition

Each consortium must be composed of eligible independent entities requesting funding to FPOs from a minimum of three different EU Member States or H2020 Associated countries (listed in Table 1 in grey). FPOs listed in the categoy of ”third countries and other countries” are not included in the minimum requirements for consortia composition.

In each proposal, one of the entities must act as the Consortium Coordinator who has the responsibility for submitting the proposal. The Consortium Coordinator must be eligible to be funded by one of the EU member States or H2020 Associated countries (listed in Table 1 in grey).

A Consortium Coordinator can only participate in one proposal (i.e. if the principal investigator is the Consortium Coordinator of a proposal, he/she cannot participate in any other proposal, neither as a Consortium Coordinator nor as a partner).

The workload distribution within a consortium must be balanced, and no partner should have more than 50% of person months.

There is the upper limit of 8 eligible project partners per consortium (including self funded partners). The maximum number of partners from the same country within the consortium must comply with national/regional regulations.

No more than one self-funded project partner per consortium is allowed.

Project partners who are not eligible for funding may participate at their own expense or if they have their own separate source of funding. The applicants have to prove (letter of intent/commitment) the willingness to self-fund their own activities or the willingness of other partners to fund their own activities. They have to follow the rules given in this Call Announcement and have to be part of the consortium agreement. However, they cannot coordinate a project. They are not considered in the minimum requirement of eligible partners and countries in the AquaticPollutants eligibility criteria.

Researchers from FPOs participating in the AquaticPollutants ERA-Net Cofund consortium or affiliated institutions (JÜLICH, TUBITAK, ISPRA) cannot apply to this Call.


Project duration must be a maximum of 36 months. Funded consortia will be asked to agree on a common starting date. The last possible end date for the projects is the 30th of June 2024.


Proposals must be received before the deadlines.

The pre-proposal and the full proposal must be submitted correctly and completely before the respective deadlines via the Submission Tool ( according to the Application Procedure (Chapter 6) and the Guidelines for Proposal Submission (published on the Submission Tool website). Applicants should note that failure to comply with the submission rules will cause ineligibility of the project and therefore exclusion from the application process.

Proposals must be written in the English language.



5. Recommendations of project proposals

All partners within a consortium should take into consideration the recommendations for setting up their project proposals.


  •   Proposals should go beyond the state of the art by providing high quality R&I and, when appropriate, make use of innovative technologies, approaches and concepts to do so;

  •   Proposals should consider on-going research activities funded by other instruments, programmes or projects. Cooperation with these activities is of high importance;

  •   Proposals should consider and incorporate as approporiate cross-cutting issues, such as socio-economic and/or capacity development.

  •   Collaboration with the parallel running Transfer Project during execution is encouraged, but not compulsory.

Consortium composition

  •   All proposals should consider geographical balance and implementation in relevant geographic settings, including in low- and middle-income countries and regions.

  •   It is encouraged but not compulsory to involve stakeholders (i.e. small and medium enterprises (SMEs), industries, authorities, public administrations, associations, as well as civil society organisations) as partners or associated partners. The modalities of participation of stakeholders are defined in the national regulations.

  •   All proposals should integrate the gender dimension of R&I activities. Budget

    There is no limit of total budget for proposals - The requested budget of proposals is limited by the number of eligible partners and by the budget of each partner. Please consider the national regulations of each FPO with regard to the specific budget limitations.


6. Application procedures

A two-step application procedure will be used in this Joint Transnational Call. Pre-proposals and full proposals must be submitted electronically via a specifically designed web platform, the Submission Tool (, using the templates provided. The link to the Submission Tool is available on the official 2020 Joint Transnational Call website of the 3 JPIs.

Applicants should note that the online system may experience high traffic volumes in the last hours before the submission deadline and it is therefore highly recommended to submit the final version of the pre / full-proposal well in advance of the deadline to avoid any last-minute technical problems. The requests for extensions to the deadline due to last minute technical problems will not be considered.

6.1. Online Submission System

Step 1 (Pre-proposal stage)

  1. In a first step, the Consortium Coordinator creates an account on the AquaticPollutants Submission Platform.

  2. The coordinator can enter, edit and save the electronic forms, add partners to the consortium, upload the project description and submit the proposal. Partners can enter and edit their own data only.

  3. It is possible to update and submit as many times as necessary the pre-proposal until the submission deadline (16 April 2020, 17:00 CEST).

  4. Applicants should note that core data are fixed at this stage. In particular, the funding requested by each partner cannot be increased in the second stage.

The submission of a pre-proposal is mandatory. It is not possible to enter the application procedure at a later stage. The information given in the pre-proposal will be used to check for eligibility and to evaluate the pre- proposal.

For any technical questions regarding the submission, please contact the AquaticPollutants Call Secretariat.

Please note, that some of the partners will also need to submit an application directly to their respective national/regional FPOs. For further details about these procedures and schedule, please consult the national/regional regulations and/or your NCP.

Step 2 (Full proposal stage)

The second step of the application consists of the submission of a more extensive full proposal. Only research consortia which successfully passed the first step will be invited to submit a full proposal.

All rules mentioned in the pre-proposal stage apply for this stage as well. Below the steps are described that need to be considered by the Consortium Coordinator and the project partners.

  1. The submission tool will be open for invited consortia.

  2. The information provided in the pre-proposal will be automatically imported into the full proposal.

  3. The coordinator can enter, edit and save all new information according to the guidelines of the full

    proposal in the submission tool.

Applicants should note that information on the core data (e.g. funding requested or institutions) cannot be changed in full proposals, unless explicitly requested by evaluators, a funding organisation or the CSC. When applying, keep in mind that the submission system will close at 17:00 CEST of the deadline date established for both Step 1 and Step 2. However, the CS can only ensure responses to email support requests up to 13:00 CEST. The respective email contacts by the CS and NCPs are listed in this document (Annexes C and D).

Public link:   Only for registered users

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