1. INTRODUCTION – BACKGROUND
The European Union is committed to supporting Member States in fostering social inclusion and in building a cohesive European society.
By reaching out to all citizens – in particular the young and the most disadvantaged – education, training and youth work are crucial to prevent and tackle poverty, social exclusion and discrimination, to foster mutual understanding and respect among people and communities and to build a foundation on which active citizenship rests.
Socio-economic inequality is at its highest level in 30 years in most European countries. While access to education and training for all has improved in Europe as a whole, educational gaps persist and access to good quality mainstream education and training remains a challenge in many European countries. This has a negative impact on learning outcomes. At the same time, although youth work can help young people gain skills and competences through non- formal learning and act as a bridge and facilitator between young people and education and training there is a need to further build capacity to reach out to the most 'hard to reach' groups1.
In March 2015, the EU Education Ministers and the European Commissioner responsible for education, youth, culture and sport adopted the Declaration on promoting citizenship and the common values of freedom, tolerance and non-discrimination through education1 (hereafter "the Paris Declaration"), which calls for the mobilisation of the education sector at European, national, regional and local level in order to promote inclusion and ownership of Europe's fundamental values. The Declaration calls on Member States and the EU "to cooperate and coordinate, to exchange experiences and to ensure that the best ideas and practices can be shared throughout the European Union" with a view to fostering the education of disadvantaged children and young people, by ensuring that our education and training systems address their needs.
The objectives of the Paris Declaration are anchored in the priorities for European cooperation in education and training until 2020 adopted in 20152, notably priority 2 on "Inclusive education, equality, equity, non-discrimination and the promotion of civic competences". They are also reflected in the EU Work Plan for Youth 2016-2018 adopted in 20153.
The 2016 Education and Training Monitor4 shows how higher levels of educational attainment in the European Union are associated with better employment, active citizenship
and individual well-being, and contribute to increase the prosperity of society as a whole. Formal education and training, but also non-formal and informal learning and measures to support the transition from education to work can be decisive factors for integrating disadvantaged groups into society.
The 2015 PISA survey5 shows that socio-economic status continues to be a strong influential factor on students' achievement, with more low achievers among the disadvantaged groups. This is often aggravated for students with an immigrant background.
In the Communication on "Improving and modernising education"6 adopted on 7 December 2016, the European Commission stresses that quality education for all is a foundation for social cohesion and an open society and that education can be one of the most effective ways to address socio-economic inequalities and to promote social inclusion. In this context, the Commission will promote inclusive education through a number of tools, including the support of an alliance of schools for inclusion.
The outcomes of the projects supported by the Education and Training strand (Lot 1) of this call should constitute the first operational step towards the creation of such an alliance, drawing upon the added value and experience of actors from different education and training sectors and informal learning environments (see under Lot 1 below for details).
The management of this call is delegated by the European Commission to the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency, hereinafter referred to as "the Agency".
2. OBJECTIVES, KEY FEATURES AND EXPECTED RESULTS
- General objectives
This call for proposals will support transnational cooperation projects in the fields of education, training and youth. The call comprises two lots, one for education and training (Lot 1) and one for youth (Lot 2).
Projects submitted under this call under both lots should aim at:
1. Disseminating and/or scaling up good practices on inclusive learning initiated in particular at local level. In the context of the present call, scaling up means replicating good practice on a wider scale/transferring it to a different context or implementing it at a higher/systemic level;
2. Developing and implementing innovative methods and practices to foster inclusive education and/or youth environments in specific contexts.
Each application must address one general objective and one of the specific objectives, which are listed separately for Lot 1 and for Lot 2. Both the general and specific objectives of the call are exhaustive: proposals that do not address them will not be considered.
Lot 1 – Education & training
The present call aims at paving the way for a future alliance of schools for inclusion by creating/developing learning communities among different actors (educational institutions and learning providers, public authorities, stakeholder and civil society organisations, business, etc.) in the field of inclusive learning.
Although the main target beneficiaries of such learning communities are expected to be schools, projects submitted under the present call are strongly encouraged to involve other formal and non-formal education and training sectors – from early childhood education and care to vocational education and training (VET), higher education and adult learning – as well as stakeholders at different levels (authorities, institutions, providers, teachers and learners, NGOs, local communities. businesses, families, youth organisations, etc.) and informal learning environments.
- Specific objectives:
Enhancing the acquisition of social and civic competences, fostering knowledge, understanding and ownership of fundamental values, promoting mutual respect and intercultural dialogue and combating discrimination on all grounds;
Promoting inclusive education and training and fostering the education of disadvantaged learners, including through supporting teachers, and educators and leaders of educational institutions in dealing with diversity and reinforcing socio- economic mixity in the learning environment;
Enhancing critical thinking and media literacy among learners, parents and educational staff;
Supporting the inclusion of newly arrived migrants in good quality education, including by assessing knowledge and validating prior learning.
Lot 2 – Youth
2.2 Key features
In line with the objective of Erasmus+ Key Action 3 to support policy reform, projects should demonstrate the capacity to generate impact not only at the level of the different partner organisations, but also at the systemic level (e.g. generating multiplier effects at territorial or sector-specific level, attracting or involving major players or networks – including from the private sector, obtaining support from public authorities, enhancing awareness and visibility of activities or outputs).
Projects focussing on dissemination/upscaling should primarily build on actions for which solid proof of their effectiveness can be provided and which show potential for being disseminated and/or scaled up.
Projects focussing on innovative practices should demonstrate their relevance, prospective actions and potential impact by building on previous analysis and evaluation work.
Learning communities established under this call should provide a platform for collecting and sharing expertise, disseminating and scaling up good practices as well as developing innovative approaches. Project activities should go beyond exchanging good practices and include concrete activities implemented at local level, preferably for disadvantaged groups.
Training institutions and learning providers involved in the project should demonstrate their commitment to promote inclusion and fundamental values also beyond the life- cycle of the project, for instance through relevant strategic plans. The commitment of the school leadership and/or responsible authorities is particularly important and should be clearly demonstrated in the application.
Projects cutting across sectors and involving non-formal learning are encouraged with a view to creating synergies between education, training, youth, culture and sport.
Proposals should include the following elements:
Context and rationale justifying the proposed actions, including the challenges to be addressed at local level and the assessment of the needs of the target group(s);
Description of tools and methods to be disseminated and/or scaled up (e.g. courses, teaching materials, cooperation models, policy recommendations) or of the innovative approach proposed;
Description of the strategy and methodology for implementation of the proposed action, in particular of the relevant concrete activities (e.g. adaptation to new context, testing, training, capacity building, awareness-raising activities, etc.);
Description of the evaluation methods, which should be integral part of the project and should provide evidence on the effectiveness of the activities;
Plans for future and longer run actions (in other sectors, areas, target groups, integration at systemic level, etc.) proving the project sustainability, including possible funding through other sources (e.g. Erasmus+, European Structural and Investment Funds, EFSI, National funds).
Synergies with other projects are encouraged including:
Other (on-going or completed) European projects on citizenship education and engagement and intercultural understanding, in particular under Erasmus+ and the predecessor European programmes in education, training and youth.
Joint EU-Council of Europe pilot projects scheme on Human Rights and Democracy7;
Activities supported by the Asylum Migration and Integration Fund and the Internal Security Fund8.
2.3 Expected results
Projects under Lot 1 - Education and training should lead to results such as:
knowledge and good practices (on inclusive learning, social and civic competences, critical thinking and media literacy as well as the integration of migrants) are widely spread in the learning communities;
innovative approaches are developed and tested, assessed and integrated into common practice or (parts of) systems;
educational leaders and educators in the learning communities become aware, ready and willing to practice inclusive educational approaches (e.g. collaborative pedagogical methods, whole school approaches, individualised support to learners) with visible engagement of families and local communities;
more effective support mechanisms and assistance services are developed and deployed to support education and training institutions and providers in implementing inclusive education approaches.
Projects under Lot 2 - Youth should lead to results such as:
improved social, civic and inter-cultural competences and skills of young people, including active citizenship, media and digital literacy, critical judgement and intercultural understanding; greater youth participation in social and civic life;
enhanced awareness among young people of their fundamental rights and sense of belonging to society, stronger endorsement of democratic values and engagement in practices of anti-racism, intercultural and inter-faith dialogue and mutual understanding;
improved outreach to young people from disadvantaged groups (e.g. young people in a "NEET"9 situation or young people with a migrant background) by building synergies with the local community and making best use of existing networks at the local level;
enhanced capacity of youth work, youth organisations and/or youth networks to act as forces of inclusion by assisting young people to engage, volunteer and drive positive change in communities;
improved expertise in providing basic assistance or equipping of newly arrived migrants and refugees with the skills they need to integrate in a different society or
which could be useful for reintegration in the country of origin when the conflict is over, as well as the appreciation of cultural diversity in the community;
better integration of newly arrived migrants and refugees and enhanced inclusive climate in the hosting societies, in particular through the planning and organisation of cultural or social activities at local level involving locals and volunteers where appropriate;
better information on social media, websites, public meetings, to support the volunteering efforts of the organisation.
Deadline for submitting applications
22nd May 2017 at 12h00 (noon) CET
June to August 2017
Information to applicants
Signature of grant agreement
November to December 2017
Project start date
1st, 31st of December 2017 or 15th of January 2018
4. BUDGET AVAILABLE
The total budget available for the co-financing of projects under the present call is EUR 10.000.000 allocated as follows:
Lot 1 - Education and training EUR 8.000.000
Lot 2 - Youth EUR 2.000.000
The financial contribution from the EU cannot exceed 80 % of the total eligible project costs. The maximum grant per project will be EUR 500.000.
The Agency reserves the right not to distribute all the funds available.
5. ADMISSIBILITY REQUIREMENTS
Applications shall comply with the following requirements:
- they must be sent no later than the deadline for submitting applications referred to in Section 3 of the present guidelines;
- they must be submitted online (see Section 14 of the present guidelines), using the electronic application form and its compulsory annexes;
- they must be drafted in one of the EU official languages. -9-
Please note that only typed applications will be considered.
The application form must be accompanied by a balanced budget and all the other documents referred to in the application form.
Failure to comply with those requirements will lead to the rejection of the application.
In order to submit an application, applicants must provide their Participant Identification Code (PIC) in the application form10. The PIC can be obtained by registering the organisation in the Unique Registration Facility (URF) hosted in the Education, Audiovisual, Culture, Citizenship and Volunteering Participant Portal. The Unique Registration Facility is a tool shared by other services of the European Commission. If an applicant or affiliated entity already has a PIC that has been used for other programmes (for example the Research programmes), the same PIC is valid for the present call for proposals.
The Participant Portal allows applicants and affiliated entities to upload or update the information related to their legal status and attach the requested legal and financial documents (see Section 14.2 for more information).
Only applications that comply with admissibility requirements will pass at evaluation stage.
6. ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA
The proposals which comply with the below criteria will be the subject of a content evaluation. Only applications that fulfil the eligibility criteria will be considered for a grant. If an application is deemed ineligible, a letter indicating the reasons will be sent to the coordinator.
The eligibility criteria will be assessed on the basis of the information provided in the application form.
6.1 Eligible applicants
Eligible applicants are public and private organisations active in the field of education, training and youth or other socio-economic sectors organisations carrying out cross-sector activities (e.g. recognition centres, chambers of commerce, trade organisations, civil society, sport and cultural organisations etc.) in the areas covered by the Declaration on promoting citizenship and the common values of freedom, tolerance and non-discrimination through education (Paris Declaration).
Applicants considered eligible to respond to this call could be (not exhaustive list): educational institutions and other learning providers;
public authorities at national/regional/local level responsible for education, training and youth;
non-profit organisations (NGOs);
trade organisations and social partners;
guidance and recognition centres;
Furthermore, for the implementation of this call for proposals, National Agencies or other structures and networks of the Erasmus+ Programme, receiving a direct grant from the Commission in accordance with the legal basis of the Programme11 are not eligible to participate. Nevertheless, the legal entities hosting the Erasmus+ National Agencies or the structures and networks mentioned above, as well as entities affiliated to these legal entities, are considered eligible applicants. However, they have to demonstrate, before being awarded a grant, that they are not in a conflict of interest either because precautionary measures are taken by them or because their internal organisation is such that there is a clear separation of interests (e.g. a minimum separation of accounts, separation of reporting and decision making lines, measures to prevent access to privileged information). Furthermore, costs and revenues of each project or activity for which the EU funds are awarded must be identified.
Legal entities having a legal or capital link with a beneficiary, which is neither limited to the project nor established for the sole purpose of its implementation may take part in the project as affiliated entities, and may declare eligible costs as specified in Section 11.2.
For that purpose, applicants shall identify such affiliated entities in the 'Detailed Project Description' which is part of the Application Package and confirm this list at the stage of notification of project results. Supporting documents proving the affiliation (legal or capital link), as well as that they comply with the eligibility and non-exclusion criteria must be submitted.
Only applications from legal entities established in the following programme countries are eligible:
the 28 Member States of the European Union;
the EFTA/EEA countries: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway;
The minimum partnership composition requirement for this call is 4 organisations from 4 different programme countries.
If networks are involved in the project, the consortium must include at least 2 organisations which are not members of the network and the consortium should overall represent at least 4 eligible countries.
In order to assess the applicants' eligibility, the following supporting documents are requested:
- for a private entity: extract from the official journal, copy of articles of association, extract of trade or association register, certificate of liability to VAT (if, as in certain programme countries, the trade register number and VAT number are identical, only one of these documents is required);
- for a public entity: copy of the resolution or decision establishing the public company, or other official document establishing the public-law entity;
- entities without legal personality: documents providing evidence that their representative(s) have the capacity to undertake legal obligations on their behalf.
Role of applicants and partners:
Applicants: this term refers to all organisations and institutions participating in the application regardless of their role in the project. It therefore includes the coordinator and all the other applicants. When the grant is awarded and the Grant Agreement is signed, they will become the beneficiaries.
Coordinator: the legal entity that submits the project application on behalf of all the applicants. If the application is selected and the project receives a grant, the coordinator will sign a multi-beneficiary grant agreement on behalf of all the applicants.
Its coordinating role stands amongst others for the following duties:
• represents and acts on behalf of the applicants vis-à-vis the European Commission and the Agency;
• coordinates the project in cooperation with all other project partners.
The coordinator must submit the mandate letters from all applicants involved in the proposal confirming their participation as annex to the application form (see Section 14).
Other applicants/partners: they are the legal entities participating in the partnership. They contribute to the implementation of the project. Each applicant must sign a mandate letter authorising the coordinator to act on his behalf in compliance with the Grant Agreement.
Associate partners: Additionally, the project may benefit from the involvement of associated partners (optional). These organisations contribute to the implementation of specific tasks/activities and/or support the dissemination and sustainability of the projects. They will not benefit financially from the EU grant. Those associate partners can be established both in Programme or partner countries. The names of the associated partners have to be provided in the Project Description which is an annex of the application form.
6.2 Eligible activities and project duration
Activities aimed at achieving the expected results listed under Section 2, for example:
Cooperation and networking models which involve combinations of relevant (public/private) stakeholders across different sectors;
Adapting and applying learning practices to new target populations
Conferences, seminars, workshops and meetings with policy and decision makers;
Assessing, sharing and validating good practice and learning experiences;
Training and other capacity-building activities (e.g. for teachers, youth workers, local authorities, prison staff, etc.);
Supportive approaches and outreach practices from young people to young people;
Targeted awareness-raising and dissemination activities including information
material and effective communication strategies;
Operational or policy recommendations in the field of education, training and youth that are relevant to the objectives of the Paris Declaration;
Supportive approaches and outreach practices addressing young people from disadvantaged groups and newly arrived migrants and refugees.
Only activities taking place in Programme countries (see Section 6.1) will be considered
eligible for funding. Any costs relating to activities undertaken outside these countries or by
organisations that are not registered in the Programme countries are not eligible unless they
are necessary for the completion of the project and duly explained and justified in the
application form. Any Amendment to the activities that involves other countries than the
Programme countries must have the prior specific authorization from the Executive Agency.
Activities must start either on 1st or 31st of December 2017 or 15th January 2018 (see also section 11.1b).
The project duration must be between 24 and 36 months. However, if after the signing of the
agreement and the start of the project it becomes impossible for the beneficiaries, for fully
justified reasons beyond their control, to complete the project within the scheduled period, an
extension to the eligibility period may be granted. A maximum extension of 6 additional
months will be granted, if requested before the deadline specified in the grant agreement.
7. EXCLUSION CRITERIA
7.1 Exclusion from participation
An applicant will be excluded from participating in calls for proposals procedure, if it is in any of the following situations:
a) it is bankrupt, subject to insolvency or winding up procedures, its assets are being administered by a liquidator or by a court, it is in an arrangement with creditors, its business activities are suspended or it is in any analogous situation arising from a similar procedure provided for under national legislation or regulations;
b) it has been established by a final judgement or a final administrative decision that the applicant is in breach of its obligations relating to the payment of taxes or social security contributions in accordance with the law of the country in which it is established, with those of the country in which the authorising officer is located or those of the country of the implementation of the grant;
c) it has been established by a final judgement or a final administrative decision that the applicant is guilty of grave professional misconduct by having violated applicable laws or regulations or ethical standards of the profession to which the applicant belongs, or by having engaged in any wrongful conduct which has an impact on its professional credibility where such conduct denotes wrongful intent or gross negligence, including, in particular, any of the following:
i. fraudulently or negligently misrepresenting information required for the verification of the absence of grounds for exclusion or the fulfilment of selection criteria or in the performance of a contract, a grant agreement or a grant decision;
ii. entering into agreement with other persons with the aim of distorting competition; iii. violating intellectual property rights;
iv. attempting to influence the decision-making process of the Agency during the award procedure;
v. attempting to obtain confidential information that may confer upon it undue advantages in the award procedure;
d) it has been established by a final judgement that the applicant is guilty of any of the following:
i. fraud, within the meaning of Article 1 of the Convention on the protection of the European Communities' financial interests, drawn up by the Council Act of 26 July 1995;
ii. corruption, as defined in Article 3 of the Convention on the fight against corruption involving officials of the European Communities or officials of EU Member States, drawn up by the Council Act of 26 May 1997, and in Article 2(1) of Council Framework Decision 2003/568/JHA, as well as corruption as defined in the legal provisions of the country where the authorising officer is located, the country in which the applicant is established or the country of the implementation of the grant;
iii. participation in a criminal organisation, as defined in Article 2 of Council Framework Decision 2008/841/JHA;
iv. money laundering or terrorist financing, as defined in Article 1 of Directive 2005/60/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council;
v. terrorist-related offences or offences linked to terrorist activities, as defined in Articles 1 and 3 of Council Framework Decision 2002/475/JHA, respectively, or inciting, aiding, abetting or attempting to commit such offences, as referred to in Article 4 of that Decision;
vi. child labour or other forms of trafficking in human beings as defined in Article 2 of Directive 2011/36/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council;
e) it has shown significant deficiencies in complying with the main obligations in the performance of a contract, a grant agreement or a grant decision financed by the Union’s budget, which has led to its early termination or to the application of liquidated damages or other contractual penalties, or which has been discovered following checks, audits or investigations by an Authorising Officer, OLAF or the Court of Auditors;
f) it has been established by a final judgement or final administrative decision that the applicant has committed an irregularity within the meaning of Article 1(2) of Council Regulation (EC, Euratom) No 2988/95;
g) in the absence of a final judgement or where applicable a final administrative decision, the applicant is in one of the cases provided in (c) to (f) above based in particular on :
i. facts established in the context of audits or investigations carried out by the Court of Auditors, OLAF or internal audit, or any other check, audit or control performed under the responsibility of an authorising officer of an EU institution, of a European office or of an EU agency or body;
ii. non-final administrative decisions which may include disciplinary measures taken by the competent supervisory body responsible for the verification of the application of standards of professional ethics;
iii. decisions of the ECB, the EIB, the European Investment Fund or international organisations;
iv. decisions of the Commission relating to the infringement of the Union's competition rules or of a national competent authority relating to the infringement of Union or national competition law.
v. decisions of exclusion by an authorising officer of an EU institution, of a European office or of an EU agency or body.
(h) where a person who is a member of the administrative, management or supervisory body of the applicant, or who has powers of representation, decision or control with regard to that applicant (this covers the company directors, members of the management or supervisory bodies, and cases where one person holds a majority of shares), is in one or more of the situations referred to in points (c) to (f) above.
(i) where a natural or legal person that assumes unlimited liability for the debts of that applicant is in one or more of the situations referred to in point (a) or (b) above.
If an applicant is in one of the situations of exclusion listed above, it should indicate the measures it has taken to remedy the exclusion situation, thus demonstrating its reliability. They may include e.g. technical, organisational and personnel measures to prevent further occurrence, compensation of damage or payment of fines. This does not apply for the situations referred in point (d) of this section.
In the cases provided in (c) to (f) above, in the absence of a final judgement or where applicable a final administrative decision, the Agency may exclude an applicant provisionally from participating in a call for proposals where their participation would constitute a serious and imminent threat to the Union's financial interests.
7.2 Rejection from the award procedure
An applicant will not be awarded a grant for this procedure if:
a) it is in an exclusion situation established in accordance with the above Section 7.1;
b) it has misrepresented the information required as a condition for participating in the procedure or has failed to supply that information;
c) it was previously involved in the preparation of a call for proposals where this entails a distortion of competition that cannot be remedied otherwise.
The same exclusion criteria apply to affiliated entities.
Rejection from this procedure and administrative sanctions (exclusion or financial penalty) may be imposed on applicants or affiliated entities where applicable, if any of the declarations or information provided as a condition for participating in this procedure prove to be false.
The applicants should be informed that the Agency may publish on its internet site the following information related to the exclusion and, where applicable, the financial penalty in the cases referred to in points (c), (d), (e) and (f) of the Section7.112:
(a) the name of the applicant concerned;
(b) the exclusion situation;
(c) the duration of the exclusion and/or the amount of the financial penalty.
In case of a preliminary classification in law (i.e. absence of a final judgement or a final administrative decision), the publication shall indicate that there is no final judgement or final administrative decision. In those cases, information about any appeals by the applicant, their status and their outcome, as well as any revised decision of the authorised officer, shall be published without delay. Where a financial penalty has been imposed, the publication shall also indicate whether that penalty has been paid.
The decision to publish the information is taken by the Agency either following the relevant final judgement, final administrative decision or preliminary classification in law, as the case may be. That decision shall take effect three months after its notification to the economic operator.
The information published shall be removed as soon as the exclusion has come to an end. In the case of a financial penalty, the publication shall be removed six months after payment of that penalty.
In accordance with Regulation (EC) No 45/2001, where personal data is concerned, the Agency shall inform the applicant of its rights under the applicable data protection rules and of the procedures available for exercising those rights.
7.3 Supporting documents
Applicants must sign a declaration on their honour certifying that they are not in one of the situations referred to in the above Sections 7.1. and 7.2, filling in the relevant form attached to the application form accompanying the call for proposals. If applicable, the relevant documentary evidence which appropriately illustrates any remedial measures taken should be provided in annex to this declaration.
This declaration is part of the Application Package (see Section 14.3).
8. SELECTION CRITERIA
Applicants must submit a declaration on their honour, completed and signed, attesting to their status as a legal person and to their financial and operational capacity to complete the proposed activities.
8.1 Financial capacity
Applicants must have stable and sufficient sources of funding to maintain their activity throughout the period during which the project is being carried out and to participate in its funding.
The applicants' financial capacity will be assessed on the basis of the following supporting documents:
1. Low value grants (equal or inferior to EUR 60.000): - a declaration on their honour
2. Grants of more than EUR 60.000:
- a declaration on their honour;
- the financial statements (including the balance sheet, the profit and loss accounts and the annexes) of the coordinator, for the last two financial years for which the accounts have been closed;
The documents required under points 1. and 2. shall be submitted only for the coordinator of the project.
The declaration on honour is submitted as an annex to the application form. The financial statements and the financial capacity form are required at a later stage of the selection process when the selection results are notified to the applicants.
The verification of financial capacity shall not apply to public bodies, or to international organisations.
For the purpose of this call, public bodies, as well as schools, higher education institutions and organisations in the fields of education, training, youth and sport that have received over 50 % of their annual revenue from public sources over the last two years shall be considered
as having the necessary financial, professional and administrative capacity to carry out activities under the Call for proposals. They shall not be required to present further documentation to demonstrate that capacity. Such organisations are required to declare (at the stage of the notification of the selection results) that their organisation complies with the above-mentioned definition of public body. The Agency reserves the right to request documentation to prove the veracity of this declaration.
If, on the basis of the documents submitted, the Agency considers that financial capacity has not been proved or is not satisfactory, it may:
Applicants must have the professional competencies as well as appropriate qualifications necessary to complete the proposed project. In this respect, applicants have to submit a declaration on their honour, and, for those applying for a grant above EUR 60.000, must include in the Application Package:
a description of the profile of the people primarily responsible for managing and implementing the operation (accompanied, where appropriate, by a list of relevant publications) within each partner institution showing all their relevant professional experience;
an exhaustive list of past or current projects connected to the selected policy priority of the call implemented by the applicants in the three last years.
9. AWARD CRITERIA
Eligible proposals will be assessed on the basis of the following criteria:
1) Relevance of the project (30%)
Purpose: The application is relevant to the chosen general and specific objectives of the call outlined in chapter 2, in the selected Lot. The project features are consistent
with the features described in the call.
Consistency: The different components of the application are mutually relevant and consistent. The application is based on an adequate analysis of challenges and needs, the objectives are realistic and address issues relevant to participating organisations and the immediate and indirect target groups. Evidence of the effectiveness of the
selected good practice(s) action(s) is provided.
Scaling up: The application demonstrates the potential for scaling up good practice(s) at different levels (e.g. local, regional, national, EU) and sectors. The scaling up is likely to generate impact not only at the level of the different partner organisations but also at system and/or policy level.
European added value: The application brings added value at EU level, through results that would not be achieved at country level alone, and there is potential for transferring results to countries not involved in the project. The project outcomes have the potential to feed into the relevant EU policy agendas.
2) Quality of the project design and implementation (20%)
Strategic plan: The application establishes a clear strategy building on a feasibility analysis and identifies the necessary activities for testing, adapting, disseminating and scaling up the good practice in the new context.
Structure: The work programme is clear and intelligible and covers all project phases.
Management: The project management plan is sound with adequate resources allocated to different tasks, clear cooperation and decision-making processes. The budget shows cost effectiveness and value for money. There is coherence between tasks, roles and financial resources allocated to partners. The financial management
arrangements are clear and appropriate as well as the design of the proposal
Evaluation: Specific measures for evaluation of processes and deliverables ensure that the project implementation is of high quality. There is a clear quality assurance plan which also covers project management adequately. The monitoring strategy
includes risk identification and a mitigating action plan.
3) Quality of the partnership and the cooperation arrangements (20%)
the areas covered by the selected lot, including for the dissemination and up scaling involving major players and policy makers.
Configuration: The partnership is capable of ensuring full achievement of the objectives of the project. They ensure coverage of all necessary skills, expertise and
Adequate allocation of
time and input among the partners is ensured. Skills and competences of the
partnership is complementary.
Commitment: Each participating organisation demonstrates full involvement
corresponding to its capacities and specific area of expertise.
Cooperation: The cooperation arrangements are balanced. The roles attributed to each partner guarantee a good balance between analysis work and exploitable outputs for dissemination, scaling up and policy making. Effective mechanisms are proposed to ensure coordination, decision making and communication between the participating
organisations, stakeholders and any other relevant party.
4) Impact, dissemination and sustainability (30%)
Dissemination: There is a clear awareness-raising, dissemination and communication strategy that ensures reaching the relevant target groups as well as the general stakeholders and the general public during the lifetime of the project. This strategy
includes plans for making any produced materials accessible through open licenses13.
Exploitation: The application demonstrates that the selected best practice(s) can be successfully disseminated and scaled up, create a wider impact and influence systemic change. The exploitation approach is clearly described and the proposed measures to
exploit the project results are potentially effective.
Impact: The foreseeable impact, notably for the identified disadvantaged groups and systems, is clearly defined and measures are in place to ensure that the impact can be achieved. The results of the activities are likely to be significant. The project outcomes have the potential to support long-term changes, improvements, or
developments for the benefit of the target groups and systems concerned.
Sustainability: The application includes appropriate measures and resources to ensure that the results and benefits can be sustained and up-scaled beyond the project
Only proposals having reached:
at least the threshold of 60% on the total score (i.e. aggregate score of the 4 award criteria) and
at least the threshold of 50% of each of the 4 individual criteria will be considered for EU funding. Applications falling below those thresholds shall be rejected.
10. LEGAL COMMITMENTS
In the event of a grant awarded by the Agency, a grant agreement drawn up in euro and
detailing the conditions and level of funding will be sent to the coordinator representing all project partners (other applicants) in view to formalize the obligations of the parties.
The two copies of the original agreement must be signed first by the legal representative of
the coordinator and returned to the Agency immediately. The Agency will sign them last.
11. FINANCIAL PROVISIONS
11.1 General Principles
a) Non-cumulative award
A project may only receive one grant from the EU budget.
In no circumstances shall the same costs be financed twice by the Union budget. To ensure
this, applicants shall indicate in the application form the sources and amounts of European Union funding received or applied for the same project or part of the project or for its functioning during the same financial year as well as any other funding received or applied for the same project.
No grant may be awarded retrospectively for projects already completed. A grant may be awarded for a project which has already begun only where the applicant can demonstrate the need to start the project before the grant agreement is signed.
In such cases, costs eligible for financing may not have been incurred prior to the date of submission of the grant application.
Co-financing means that the resources which are necessary to carry out the project may not be entirely provided by the EU grant.
Co-financing of the project may take the form of:
the beneficiary's own resources;
income generated by the project;
financial contributions from third parties.
d) Balanced budget
The estimated budget of the project is to be attached to the application form. It must have revenue and expenditure in balance.
The budget must be drawn up in euros.
Applicants which foresee that costs will not be incurred in euros shall use the exchange rate published on the Inforeuro website available at http://ec.europa.eu/budget/contracts_grants/info_contracts/inforeuro/inforeuro_en.cfm on the date of the publication of this call for proposals.
e) Implementation contracts/subcontracting
Where the implementation of the project requires the award of procurement contracts (implementation contracts), the beneficiary must award the contract to the bid offering best value for money or the lowest price (as appropriate), avoiding conflicts of interests and retain the documentation for the event of an audit.
In the event of procurement exceeding EUR 60 000, the beneficiaries must obtain competitive tenders from at least 5 potential contractors, unless national rules prescribe differently. In the latter case, national rules will apply provided that the contracting authority is able to demonstrate, if requested, the coherence between the procedure followed and the national rules applied.
Moreover, the beneficiaries are expected to clearly document the tendering procedure and retain the documentation for the event of an audit.
If applicable and the beneficiary does not comply with the above rule (competitive tenders from at least 5 potential contractors), the whole amount of the contract declared will be deemed ineligible.
Entities acting in their capacity of contracting authorities in the meaning of Directive 2014/24/EU14 or contracting entities in the meaning of Directive 2014/25/EU15 shall abide by the applicable national public procurement rules.
Sub-contracting, i.e. the externalisation of specific tasks or activities which form part of the project as described in the proposal and which cannot be performed by the beneficiary itself must satisfy the conditions applicable to any implementation contract (as specified here above in Section 11.1 e) and in addition to them the following conditions:
- it may only cover the implementation of a limited part of the action;
- it must be justified having regard to the nature of the action and what is necessary for its implementation;
- it must be clearly stated in the proposal or prior written authorisation from the Agency must be obtained.
f) Financial support to third parties.
The applications may not envisage provision of financial support to third parties.
11.2 Funding forms General provisions
The grants financed through reimbursement of eligible costs in combination with flat rate covering overheads are calculated on the basis of a detailed estimated budget, indicating clearly the costs that are eligible for EU funding.
Maximum amount requested
The maximum amount requested will be EUR 500.000.
The EU grant is limited to a maximum co-financing rate of 80% of eligible costs taking into account the maximum grant amount. Consequently, part of the total eligible expenses entered in the estimated budget must be financed from sources other than the Union grant.
The grant amount awarded may neither exceed the total eligible costs nor the grant amount requested. Amounts are indicated in euros.
Acceptance of an application by the Agency does not constitute an undertaking to award a grant equal to the amount requested by the beneficiary.
Eligible costs are costs actually incurred by the beneficiary of a grant which meet the
- they are incurred during the project duration as specified in the grant agreement, with the exception of costs relating to final reports and certificates.
The period of eligibility of costs will start as specified in the grant agreement. If a beneficiary can demonstrate the need to start the project before the agreement is signed, expenditure may be authorised before the grant is awarded. Under no circumstances can the eligibility period start before the date of submission of the grant application (see Section 11.1b).
- they are indicated in the estimated overall budget of the project;
- they are incurred in connection with the project which is the subject of the grant and are necessary for its implementation of the project;
- they are identifiable and verifiable, in particular being recorded in the accounting records of the beneficiary and determined according to the applicable accounting standards of the country where the beneficiary is established and according to the usual cost-accounting practices of the beneficiary;
- they comply with the requirements of applicable tax and social legislation;
- they are reasonable, justified, and comply with the requirements of sound financial management, in particular regarding economy and efficiency.
The beneficiary's internal accounting and auditing procedures must permit direct reconciliation of the costs and revenues declared in respect of the project with the corresponding accounting statements and supporting documents.
The same criteria apply to affiliated entities.
Eligible direct costs:
The eligible direct costs for the project are those costs which, with due regard for the conditions of eligibility set out above, are identifiable as specific costs directly linked to the performance of the project and which can therefore be booked to it directly, such as:
- The cost of personnel working under an employment contract with the applicant or equivalent appointing act and assigned to the action/project, comprising actual salaries plus social security contributions and other statutory costs included in their remuneration, provided that these costs are in line with the applicant's usual policy on remuneration. NB: this cost must be actual cost incurred by the beneficiaries and staff cost of other organisations is eligible only if it is paid directly or reimbursed by the beneficiary. These costs may include additional remuneration, including payments on the basis of supplementary contracts regardless of their nature, provided that it is paid in a consistent manner whenever the same kind of work or expertise is required and independently from the source of funding used.
- The corresponding salary costs of personnel of national administrations are eligible to the extent that they relate to the cost of activities which the relevant public authority would not carry out if the project concerned was not undertaken;
- Subsistence allowances (for meetings, European conferences, etc.) provided that they are in line with the beneficiaries' usual practices on subsistence allowances;
- Travel allowances (for meetings, European conferences, etc.), provided that they are in line with the beneficiaries’ usual practices on travel allowances;
- Cost of equipment (new or second-hand), provided that it is written off in accordance with the tax and accounting rules applicable to the beneficiaries and generally accepted for items of the same kind. Only the portion of the equipment's depreciation corresponding to the duration of the project and the rate of actual use for the purposes of the project may be taken into account by the Agency, except where the nature and/or the context of its use justifies different treatment by the Agency;
- Costs of consumables and supplies, provided that they are identifiable and assigned to the project;
- Costs entailed by other contracts awarded by the beneficiaries for the purposes of carrying out the project, provided that the conditions laid down in the grant agreement are met;
- Costs arising directly from requirements linked to the performance of the project (dissemination of information, specific evaluation of the project, audits, translations, reproduction, etc.), including, where applicable, the costs of any financial services (especially the cost of financial guarantees);
- Non-deductible VAT unless it is related to activities of public authorities in the Member States;
- Costs relating to the external audits in support of the requests for payments.
- Insurance costs for volunteers provided that they are in line with the beneficiary's usual practices.
- Volunteers per diems provided that they are in line with the beneficiary's usual practices.
Eligible indirect costs (administrative costs)
A flat-rate amount, up to 7% of the eligible direct costs of the project, is eligible under indirect costs, representing the beneficiaries' general administrative costs that can be regarded as chargeable to the project. Indirect costs may not include costs entered under another budget heading. Applicants' attention is drawn to the fact that in the case of organisations receiving an operating grant, indirect costs are no longer eligible under the present call for those organisations.
The following costs shall not be considered eligible:
- Return on capital;
- Debt and debt service charges;
- Provisions for losses or potential future liabilities;
- Interest owed;
- Costs of transfer from the Agency charged by the bank of the beneficiary;
- Doubtful debts;
- Exchange losses;
- Costs declared by the beneficiaries and covered by another project receiving a European Union grant. In particular, indirect costs shall not be eligible under a grant for a project awarded to the beneficiary who already receives an operating grant financed from the Union budget during the period in question;
- Contributions in kind;
- Excessive or reckless expenditure;
- Expenses for travel to or from countries outside Programme countries, unless explicit prior authorisation is granted by the Agency.
Calculation of the final grant amount – Supporting documents
The final amount of the grant to be awarded to the beneficiary is established after completion
of the action, upon approval of the request for payment containing the following documents:
- A final report providing details of the implementation and results of the project;
- A financial statement of project costs actually incurred.
In case of grant for an action equal or inferior to EUR 60.000, the beneficiary is required to submit the following sample of supporting documents:
Staff - > The three highest consolidated staff costs (i.e. staff member costs) for the whole eligibility period.
Subcontracting - > The three highest value subcontracts
Travel and subsistence - > 25% of the highest costs declared under this budget item
- Example of underlining documents to be submitted in support of the final payment:
- 1) Staff costs: employment contract (or equivalent document), payroll (or remuneration’s receipts), proof of payments and the time sheets or equivalent documents showing the manpower’s work effort (i.e. number of working days);
- 2) Subcontracting: quotes (if applicable), contracts, invoices and proofs of payments;
- 3) Travel and subsistence: copy of tickets and boarding passes, hotel invoices (and
proof of payments).
In case of grant for an action more than EUR 60.000, the beneficiary is required to submit in support of the final payment, a “Report of factual findings on the Final Financial Report –
Type I” produced by an approved auditor or in case of public bodies, by a competent and independent public officer.
The procedure and the format to be followed by an approved auditor or in case of public bodies, by a competent and independent public officer are detailed in the “Guidance Notes” available under the following link: https://eacea.ec.europa.eu/about-eacea/document- register_en. The use of the report format set by the 'Guidance Notes' is compulsory.
In the event of non-execution or clearly inadequate execution of an activity planned in the application attached to the grant agreement, the final grant will be reduced accordingly.
After analysis of the declared costs, if the eligible costs actually incurred by the beneficiary are lower than anticipated, the Agency will apply the rate of co-financing stated in the grant agreement to the expenditure actually incurred.
EU grants may not have the purpose or effect of producing a profit within the framework of the project of the beneficiary. Profit shall be defined as a surplus of receipts over the eligible costs incurred by the beneficiary, when the request is made for payment of the balance. In this respect, where a profit is made, the Agency shall be entitled to recover a percentage of the profit corresponding to the Union contribution to the eligible costs actually incurred by the beneficiary to carry out the project.
The verification of non-profit rule does not apply to a grant equal or inferior to EUR 60.000.
11.3 Payment arrangements
A pre-financing payment corresponding to 40% of the grant amount will be transferred to the coordinator within 30 days of the date when the last of the two parties signs the agreement, provided all requested guarantees have been received. Pre-financing is intended to provide the
beneficiaries with a float.
A second pre-financing payment of 40% of the total grant amount will be made within 60 days after the Agency receives a request for payment accompanied by a progress report on the project's implementation, provided the Agency approves the report. This second pre-financing payment may not be made until at least 70% of the previous pre-financing payment has been used up. Where the consumption of the previous pre-financing is less than 70%, the amount of the new pre-financing payment shall be reduced by the unused amounts of the previous pre-
The Agency will establish the amount of the final payment to be made to the coordinator on
the basis of the calculation of the final grant amount.
If the total of earlier payments is higher than the final grant amount, the coordinator will be
required to reimburse the amount paid in excess by the Agency through a recovery order.
11.4 Pre-financing guarantee
The Agency may require any organisation for which the financial capacity is not satisfactory to provide a guarantee for up to the same amount as the pre-financing in order to limit the financial risks linked to the pre-financing payment.
The purpose of this guarantee is to make a bank, a financial institution, or third party stand as irrevocable collateral security for, or first-call guarantor of, the grant beneficiaries' obligations. This financial guarantee, in euro, shall be provided by an approved bank or financial institution established in one of the Member State of the European Union.
The guarantee may be replaced by joint and several guarantees by a third party or by a joint guarantee of the beneficiaries of a project who are parties to the same grant agreement. The guarantee shall be released as the pre-financing is gradually cleared against interim payments or payments of balances to the beneficiary, in accordance with the conditions laid down in the grant agreement.
This requirement does not apply to public bodies and international organisations under public law established by intergovernmental agreements, specialised agencies created by such organisations, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) or the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
12.1 By the beneficiaries
Beneficiaries must clearly acknowledge the European Union's contribution in all publications or in conjunction with activities for which the grant is used.
Furthermore, beneficiaries are required to give prominence to the name and logo of the European Commission on all their publications, posters, programmes and other products realised under the co-financed project. To do this, they must use the format and the logo of the relevant programme, which is provided by the Agency at the following webpage: http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/about/eacea_logos_en.php. If this requirement is not fully complied with, the beneficiary's grant may be reduced in accordance with the provisions of the grant agreement.
12.2 By the Agency and/or the Commission
With the exception of scholarships paid to natural persons and other direct support paid to natural persons in most need, all information relating to grants awarded in the course of a financial year must be published on the Internet site of the European Union institutions no later than 30 June of the year following the financial year in which the grants were awarded.
The Agency and/or the European Commission will publish the following information:
• the name of the beneficiary;
• the locality of the beneficiary: address of the beneficiary when the latter is a legal person, region when the beneficiary is a natural person, as defined on NUTS 2 level if he/she is domiciled within the EU or equivalent if domiciled outside the EU;
• the amount awarded;
• the nature and purpose of the grant.
Upon a reasoned and duly substantiated request by the beneficiary, the publication shall be waived if such disclosure risks threatening the rights and freedoms of individuals concerned as protected by the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union or harm commercial interests of the beneficiaries.
12.3 Dissemination and Exploitation
Activities serving the dissemination and exploitation of results are a way to showcase the work that has been done as part of the Erasmus+ project: sharing results, lessons learned, outcomes and findings beyond the participating organisations will enable a wider community to benefit from a work that has received EU funding, as well as to promote the organisation's efforts towards the objectives of Erasmus+, which attaches fundamental importance to the link between the Programme and policies.
For more information on dissemination and exploitation of project result requirements, please refer to the Erasmus+ Programme guide available under this link:
http://ec.europa.eu/programmes/erasmus-plus/resources_en. 13. DATA PROTECTION
All personal data (such as names, addresses, CVs, etc.) will be processed in accordance with Regulation (EC) No 45/2001 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 December 2000 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data by the European Community institutions and bodies and on the free movement of such data. Unless marked as optional, the applicant's replies to the questions in the application form are necessary to evaluate and further process the grant application in accordance with the specifications of the call for proposals. Personal data will be processed solely for that purpose by the department or Unit responsible for the Union grant programme concerned (entity acting as data controller). Personal data may be transferred on a need to know basis to third parties involved in the evaluation of proposals or in the grant management procedure, without prejudice of transfer to the bodies in charge of monitoring and inspection tasks in accordance with European Union law. In particular, for the purposes of safeguarding the financial interests of the Union, personal data may be transferred to internal audit services, to the European Court of Auditors, to the Financial Irregularities Panel or to the European Anti- Fraud Office and between authorising officers of the Commission and the executive agencies. The applicant has the right of access to, and to rectify, the data concerning him or her. For any question relating to these data, please contact the Controller. Applicants have the right of recourse to the European Data Protection Supervisor at any time. A detailed Privacy statement, including contact information, is available on EACEA's website: http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/about/documents/calls_gen_conditions/eacea_grants_privacy_statem ent.pdf
Applicants and, if they are legal entities, persons who are members of the administrative, management or supervisory board of that applicant or who have powers of representation, decision or control with regard to that applicant, or natural or legal persons that assume unlimited liability for the debts of that applicant, are informed that, their personal data (name, given name if natural person, address, legal form and name and given name of the persons with powers of representation, decision-making or control, if legal person) may be registered in the Early Detection and Exclusion System (EDES) by the Autorising Officer of the Agency, should they be in one of the situations mentioned in Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union and repealing Council Regulation (EC,
Euratom) No 1605/2002 (OJ L 298 of 26.10.2012, p. 1) as amended by the Regulation (EU, Euratom) 2015/1929 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 October 2015 (OJ L 286, 30.10.2015, p. 1).
14. PROCEDURE FOR THE SUBMISSION OF PROPOSALS 14.1 Publication
The call for proposals is published in the Official Journal of the European Union and on the following website:
14.2 Registration in the Participant Portal
Before submitting an application, applicants and affiliated entities will have to register their organisation in the Education, Audiovisual, Culture, Citizenship and Volunteering Participant Portal and receive a Participant Identification Code (PIC). The PIC will be requested in the application form for applicants and in the 'Detailed Project Description' for affiliated entities.
The Participant Portal is the tool through which all legal and financial information related to organisations will be managed. It is accessible via the Education, Audiovisual, Culture, Citizenship and Volunteering Participant Portal. Information on how to register can be found in the portal under the following address: http://ec.europa.eu/education/participants/portal.
The tool also allows applicants to upload different documents related to their organisation. These documents have to be uploaded once and will not be requested again for subsequent applications by the same organisation.
Legal entity form: this document summarises the legal details of the coordinator. For public-law entities the legal resolution or decision established in respect of the public company, or other official document established for the public-law entity needs to be submitted with the legal entity form. For private-law bodies, the statutes and official registration of the company are requested.
More details on the supporting document that need to be uploaded in the portal can be found on the following website:
The Agency can propose an agreement only on the basis of acceptance of documents which make it possible to define the beneficiary's legal personality (public administration, private company, or non-profit organisation, etc.), and on the provision of financial identification/ bank details.
The relevant documents to be uploaded for the purpose of this call for proposals are the
14.3 Submission of the grant application
Proposals must be submitted in accordance with the admissibility requirements set out under Section 5.
The application form is available on the Internet at the following address:
Applicants are requested to read carefully all information about the call for proposals, the submission procedure and to use the documents forming part of the application ('Application
and containing all relevant and applicable annexes and
The full Application Package must be submitted online by the deadline set out in Section 3 on
the correct E-form, duly completed
Application forms which do not include all the necessary information
and which are not submitted online by the deadline will not be considered. Application forms
sent by e-mail, by paper and/or fax will not be accepted.
No modifications to the application are allowed once the deadline for submission has elapsed. However, if there is a need to clarify certain aspects or for the correction of clerical mistakes, the Agency may contact the applicant for this purpose during the evaluation process.
All applicants will be informed in writing about the results of the selection process.
14.4 Rules applicable
• Regulation (EU) N° 1288/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 December 2013 establishing 'Erasmus+': the Union programme for education, training, youth and sport and repealing Decisions No 1719/2006/EC, No 1720/2006/EC and No 1298/2008/EC;
• Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union (OJ L 298, 26.10.2012, p.1) as amended by the Regulation (EU, Euratom) 2015/1929 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 October 2015 (OJ L 286, 30.10.2015, p. 1);
• Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1268/2012 of 29 October 2012 on the rules of application of Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union (OJ L 362, 31.12.2012, p.1) as amended by the Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) 2015/2462 of 30 October 2015 amending Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1268/2012 on the rules of application of Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union (OJ L 342, 29.12.2015, p. 7).
If you have any questions, please contact us at EACEA-Policy-Support@ec.europa.eu.