1. Introduction and background information
The ERA-NET scheme is an instrument of the European Commission’s Seventh Framework Programme providing funding to improve the cooperation and coordination of national research activities and thus strengthen the European Research Area (ERA) with other regions of the world.
ERANETMED is a EU FP7 initiative that aims at co-ordinating research activities of the different national research programmes from EU Members States, Associated Countries to the EU Research Framework Programmes and Mediterranean Partner Countries. In particular, the ERANETMED objective is to strengthen the collaboration and common capacity of research programme owners from above countries to address some of the major challenges that the Mediterranean is facing and strengthen Euro-Mediterranean research co- operation. ERANETMED has already launched its first joint call on: Renewable Energies, Water Resources and their connections for the Mediterranean Region
Building on the previous experience and on joint interest of Research Programme Owners, the second joint Call is launched and is co-funded by the following Euro-Mediterranean entities, grouped together in the Executive Committee of Funding Agencies (ECFP):
CIHEAM – Bari - Centre International Hautes Etudes Agronomiques Méditerranéennes (Bari), International Organisation
TUBITAK - The Scientific and Technological Research Council, Turkey
DGRSDT - Direction la Recherche Scientifique et du Développement Technologique, Algeria
RPF - Research Promotion Foundation, Cyprus
STDF – Science, Technology Development Fund, Egypt
ANR - Agence Nationale de la Recherche , France
CNRS-F - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, France
HCST - Higher Council Science and Technology, Jordan
CNRS-L – Conseil National de la Recherche Scientifique, Lebanon
MENESFCRS – Ministry of Higher Education, and Scientific Research, Morocco
MESRST - Tunisian Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, Tunisia
BMBF - Federal Ministry of Education and Research, Germany
MCST - Malta Council for Science and Technology, Malta
MINECO - Ministry of Economy and Competiveness, Spain
MIUR - Ministry of Instruction, Universities and Research, Italy
GRST - General Secretariat for Research and Technology, Greece.
With this Call interested project consortia composed of partners from the countries represented within the ECFP are be invited to submit proposals for funding.
Four separate evaluation and ranking lists will be made for each of the four Research Questions addressed by the call. Each Research question is coded by its own identifier (call identifier). The Members of the ECFP are responsible for defining the principles of the Call as well as for the steering, decision making and monitoring of its implementation.
They will provide funds and administrative services for supporting national beneficiaries in collaborative projects to be jointly selected. Details of the implementation of the Call have
been agreed upon by all members of the ECFP in an Implementation Agreement with these Terms of Reference being an integral part of it.
The ECFP is assisted by a Call Secretariat (CS) in charge of the Common Call Management (CCM) hosted at the German Aerospace Center (DLR). The modus operandi and the man- date of the CS are defined by the Funding Parties in the Implementation Agreement and in the “Terms of Reference for the Common Call Management”, which are annexed to the Implementation Agreement.
The Joint Call is implemented through a coordinated funding action based on a Virtual Common Pot scheme where each Funding Party funds its own national research organization within a multilateral project selected through a peer review process.
The total financial contribution to the Joint Call will be 11,450,000 Euro. 2. Scope of the call
The aim of this call is to propose sustainable solutions for the environmental challenges of “Euro-Mediterranean vulnerable communities” intended as those communities leaving in areas –coastal zones or inland - in which local resources like biodiversity, land and water, energy or food are under serious threat by factors such as migration, environmental, socio- economic factors etc.
Therefore, it is of utmost importance – for the preservation and protection of local resources and ecosystems – to address the main environmental challenges of the region, contributing to a comprehensive and holistic approach. Communities and their resources and ecosystems in the Mediterranean region suffer common threats due to unstable or severe environmental conditions, global climate change pressure and demographic change, particularly in coastal zones and inland arid areas where the access to and supply of resources is limited and under pressure.
2.1. Themes and scientific scope
Considering the need of an holistic, multidisciplinary and comprehensive approach for the preservation and protection of local resources in vulnerable communities, projects will address one of the following research questions (RQ):
1. “Land &Water/ Food” and Environment (Call identifier RQ1-2016)
Land and soil management, climate and drought, erosion and desertification, including socio- economic and governance aspects as well as human induced hazard and risk, and their impact on water and food resources availability. As main results projects will provide: an ecosystem- based water management, deep understanding and modelling of different natural and non- natural hazards processes in relation to impact on local resources (i.e. water and/or food), unravel critical relationships among different variables and factors and simulate combined impacts on local resources as well as providing sustainable impact mitigation measures.
2. Energy and Environment (Call identifier RQ2-2016)
Environmentally sound renewable and sustainable energy systems and production at community level with a view to support sustainable use of water resources, food production and ecosystems protection, particularly the management, recovery and recycling of waste. As main results projects will provide a deep insight and modelling as well as simulation of
sustainable and socially innovative energy-use related options to reduce environmental pressure, protect ecosystems and optimize use and cost of water and food production.
3. “Climate/demographic change” and Environment (Call identifier RQ3-2016)
Reducing climate and demographic change pressure on environment and ecosystems through the efficient use of resources. As main results, projects will provide models and adaptable innovative schemes for the efficient use of local resources, with particular regard to water use efficiency and water saving, sustainable management and planning and conservation of ecosystems, providing modelling and quantification of potentially increased resources yields and quality of ecosystems after adoption of measures.
4. “Societies/Ecosystems” and Environment (Call identifier RQ4-2016)
Relationships and complex interactions among societal dynamics, ecosystem variables and the transformations of resources (i.e.: water or food) and related supply systems. As main results, projects will provide understanding and modelling of relevant multi-factor relationships, simulation of trajectories and impact of combined social dynamic and ecosystem processes on the use of resources while providing innovative and socially driven solutions for a sound management of resources transformation and their supply and empowering marginal groups providing driven trainings, collaborative management of ecosystems, etc.
2.2 Expected impacts
Projects will have to demonstrate tangible impacts on:
Sustainability and quality of life of targeted communities.
Communities’ awareness and capacity to protect own local resources, environment
Improving methods, innovative approaches and governance for the mitigation of
impacts on local resources and ecosystems due to natural and non-natural hazards.
2.3 Actions addressed
Three types of collaborative activities – “actions” – can be funded by this call: Collaborative research, Innovation, Mobility.
All projects will have to include collaborative research. Collaborative research is compulsory and undertaken by a partnership of institutions (“consortium”) designed to produce new knowledge through scientific research, whereby each team within the partnership actively pursues specific task objectives with a view to pooling the results to contribute to the achievement of a set of common, well-defined project objectives. Collaborative research should have high impact and contribute to demand and policy driven research.
When explicitly mentioned in the National Rules of Funding Agencies, actions related to Innovation and Mobility1 are strongly encouraged and their inclusion in the project work plan will be carefully considered and positively evaluated.
More specifically, as for Innovation, projects will deliver tangible outputs and/or align projects towards enhancing innovation or social innovation, depending on the research question addressed. When explicitly allowed by the National Rules of Funding Agencies, Innovation actions should involve the private sector in the project Consortium, and
particularly relevant SMEs. However, this will not result into a penalization of applicants whose national Funding Agencies do not allow private sector funding in their National Rules.
As for Mobility, projects are encouraged to integrate in their work plan schemes for the mobility of young researchers / post graduates, in accordance with the modalities set out in National Rules of Funding Agencies. To this regard, CIHEAM Bari – acting as Intergovernmental Organization – will fund the inclusion of mobility schemes involving nationals from the following countries: Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Tunisia, Turkey, Jordan2.
2.4 Cross-cutting issues
Applicants are encouraged to take into account for their research important cross-cutting issues, particularly: governance, ICT and gender. The inclusion of cross-cutting issues will be carefully considered and positively evaluated.
2.5 Participation rules
Applicants must be eligible for funding according to the regulations of their respective national Funding Agencies. They can represent research and higher education entities, companies, and other legal entities such as NGOs, once again subject to institutional restrictions set by individual Funding Agencies. Details on eligible institutions for each of the Funding Agency can be found in the Annex 2 of the Guide for Applicants, and should be consulted prior to proposal preparation.
Applicants from ERANETMED countries having no contribution in this Call can participate in project consortia with their own institution, as additional partners to the minimum number of participants, by funding their own involvement.
Research organizations or industry not belonging to countries participating in ERANETMED may participate in selected projects (as additional partners to the minimum number of participants) as co-funders, which means that they can contribute to a specific project either financially with “own contribution” or “in kind”. Their commitment must be presented at the time of proposal submission according to the specific text template, which can be found in the Guidelines for Applicants.
The project consortium must comprise project partners from at least 3 different countries whose Funding Agencies contribute to the present call, of which at least one from an EU Member State/Associated Country to European Research Framework Programme and one from a Mediterranean Partner Country.
The Project Consortium designates a Project Coordinator which must belong to an entity legally established in one of the countries funding this Call. The project Co-ordinator will have the following role:
Be the single point of contact and entry point for information provided by the Call Secretariat (CS) before, during and after submission.
To submit the Application Form on behalf of the consortium
In any awarded project, compile and submit reports/deliverables to the Call Secretariat on behalf of the project consortium
The Co-ordinator will not be responsible for the financial management of research funding, which will be handled directly between research partners of the consortium and their national funding agencies.
The applicants are advised to contact their National Contact Point for ERANETMED call in their own country as listed in Annex 1 to the Guide for Applicants.
The project Co-ordinator shall inform the CS and each of the national funding agencies of any event that might affect the implementation of the project.
The consortium of applicants will need to draw up a consortium agreement (template in Annex 3 to the Guidelines for Applicants), which should include the fair handling of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) and it must be signed before the conclusion of the grant agreement.
The duration of a project can range between 24 and 36 months.
The projects are expected to start not later than three months after the conclusion of the Grant Agreement.