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URBACT Call for the creation of up to 25 Transfer Networks
Deadline: 10 Jan 2018   CALL EXPIRED

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INTRODUCTION – CALL FOR PROPOSALS

The URBACT III Operational Programme (CCI 2014TC16RFIR003) was officially adopted on 12 December 2014 by Commission Implementing Decision C(2014) 9857. The adopted Operational Programme (OP) can be found on the URBACT website1.

The OP foresees that URBACT III shall improve the design and implementation of sustainable integrated urban strategies and action plans in cities. To do so, the programme will build on transnational Transfer Networks to be created by means of calls for proposals.

In this context, the “Commissariat Général à l’Egalité des Territoires” (CGET) (France), Managing Authority of the URBACT III Operational programme, issues a CALL FOR PROPOSALS FOR THE CREATION OF UP TO 25 TRANSFER NETWORKS.

The terms of reference of the present call for proposals have been approved by the URBACT III Monitoring Committee on 2nd June 2017.

This Call for Proposals is open from 15 September 2017 until 10 January 2018, 15:00 CET2.

 

SECTION 1 - ABOUT URBACT III & TRANSNATIONAL NETWORKS

1.1. The URBACT III programme

The URBACT III Programme is part of the European Territorial Cooperation Objective of the Structural Fund policies for the period 2014-2020. The URBACT III Programme is financed through the ERDF, for which principles and regulations are laid down in EU Regulations N° 1303/2013, 1301/2013 and 1299/2013.

URBACT’s mission is to enable cities to work together and develop integrated solutions to common urban challenges, by networking, learning from one another’s experiences, drawing lessons and identifying good practices to improve urban policies.

URBACT promotes exchange and learning between cities. It uses European Structural Funds to achieve its goals. It does not finance investments nor does it carry out pilot projects.

As stated in the Operational Programme, URBACT III is driven by the following specific objectives:

  • To improve the capacities of cities to manage sustainable urban policies and practices in an integrated and participative way

  • To improve the design of sustainable urban strategies and action plans in cities

  • To improve the implementation of sustainable urban strategies and action plans in cities

  • To ensure that practitioners and decision-makers at all levels (EU, national, regional and local) have increased access to URBACT thematic knowledge and share know-how on sustainable urban development

 

1.2. Transnational exchange and learning networks in URBACT III

The core strand of activities of the URBACT III Programme is composed of transnational exchange and learning networks. URBACT transnational networks aim to impact local policies and practices by supporting the design and implementation of sustainable and integrated urban policies. There are 3 different types of networks (please refer to the OP and programme manual for more details):

  • Action-Planning Networks

  • Implementation Networks

  • Transfer Networks

The focus of this particular call is on Transfer Networks which aim to allow cities to adapt and re-use successful good practices to improve their integrated urban policies and the delivery of these policies on the ground.

The principles and regulations for transnational exchange and learning networks to be implemented within the programme are laid down in the URBACT III Operational Programme. In addition to the Operational Programme, the URBACT III Programme Manual includes specific Fact Sheets outlining how the different tools and actions shall be implemented and shall operate. In particular, potential Transfer Networks applicants are invited to refer to the following Fact Sheets:

  • Fact Sheet 2C - Transfer Networks

  • Fact Sheet 2D - Network Creation

  • Fact Sheet 2E - Network Management

  • Fact Sheet 2F - Financial Management and Control

1.3. What’s in it for cities?

With transnational exchange and learning networks, the URBACT programme provides cities and urban practitioners with:

  • an opportunity to share and learn from peers in cities across Europe

  • an opportunity to work with other cities around a specific policy challenge/ problem, to design innovative solutions in the format of integrated action plans or to implement an integrated urban strategy

  • tools and training in the field of integrated and participatory approaches to urban challenges and policies

  • expertise to support the development and delivery of integrated and participatory policy- making, as well as thematic expertise to feed into local policies and practices

  • financial support to work with EU partners and develop integrated action plans

More detailed information on what cities can get from taking part in an URBACT network, about the URBACT method, and what is expected from them is available in the Guide to Transfer Networks published alongside the present call for proposals.

 

SECTION 2 – ABOUT TRANSFER NETWORKS & BENEFICIARIES

2.1. Main objective and expected results

The main objective of Transfer Networks is to improve the capacity of cities to manage sustainable urban policies and more specifically to improve the implementation of sustainable integrated urban strategies and action plans in European cities.

To deliver on this objective, Transfer Networks are expected to support an organised process of exchange and learning among peers across Europe by fostering the transfer of good practice in the field of sustainable urban development.

Transfer Networks will allow cities to work together on the adaptation and re-use of a good practice already implemented in a city (and the subsequent enhancement of the good practice building on lessons learnt through the re-use).

As a starting point, cities willing to get involved in Transfer Networks shall identify:

  • -  The policy challenge they want to address at the local level as a Transfer City.

  • -  The corresponding Good Practice3 of the Good Practice City they are willing to transfer and adapt in their own local contexts.

Cities willing to get involved in Transfer Networks shall commit to work on their policy challenges with a participatory approach involving all relevant stakeholders (from within the local administration and beyond, civil society, private sector, associations, etc.) in the transfer process. These key stakeholders will be gathered in an URBACT Local Group. They will be actively involved in the transnational exchange activities as well as the transfer and adaptation of the Good Practice in each partner organisation.

The participatory approach shall strengthen the capacity of local stakeholders in integrated urban policies and improve the implementation of good practices in the field of integrated sustainable urban development.

2.2. Eligible beneficiaries

For transnational exchange and learning activities (and thus for Transfer Networks), the URBACT III Operational Programme identifies the Programme area and defines two categories of beneficiaries: the main beneficiaries (city partners) and other beneficiaries (non-city partners).

The URBACT III programme area consists of:

  • The 28 EU Member States

  • Partner States Norway and Switzerland. Partners from Norway and Switzerland cannot make use of ERDF allocations. Partners from Switzerland can be co-financed at 50% by a national fund. Norwegian partners may participate in Transfer Networks at their own cost for this call. The situation for Norwegian co-funding will be reviewed on an annual basis by the competent authorities.

  • Instrument for Pre Accession (IPA) countries. Partners from IPA countries can participate in operations using IPA funding, without receiving ERDF co-financing

  • Other countries. Partners from other countries, anywhere in the world, can participate with their own funding.

The main beneficiaries (city partners) for Transfer Networks shall be cities from EU 28 Member States, Norway and Switzerland.

 

Under URBACT III, the beneficiary “city” refers to the public local authority representing:

  • Cities, municipalities, towns;

  • Infra-municipal tiers of government such as city districts and boroughs in cases where they are represented by a politico-administrative institution having competences for policy- making and implementation in the policy area covered by the URBACT network concerned in which they are willing to get involved;

  • Metropolitan authorities and organized agglomerations in cases where they are represented by a politico-administrative institution having delegated competences for policy-making and implementation in the policy area covered by the URBACT network.

There is no limit of size (population) for cities wishing to participate in URBACT activities.

In addition to city partners, Transfer Networks can also include a limited number of other beneficiaries (non-city partners). In the case of Transfer Networks, only non-city partners as defined below are eligible:

  • • Local agencies defined as public or semi-public organisations set up by a city, partially or fully owned by the city authority, responsible for the design and implementation of specific policies (economic development, energy supply, health services, transport, etc.)

In order to be eligible, non-city partners must be public authorities or Equivalent Public Bodies4. Please refer to Section 4 for further specific details about eligible beneficiaries for this call.

In the case of Transfer Networks, provincial, regional and national authorities as well as universities and research centers are not eligible partners5.

 

SECTION 3 - THEMATIC COVERAGE FOR TRANSFER NETWORKS

3.1. URBACT Thematic Objectives

As defined in the URBACT III Operational Programme, the thematic coverage of the URBACT III Programme 2014-2020 is in line with the Thematic Objectives (TO) of the EU Cohesion Policy for 2014-2020 and thus strongly linked with the pillars of the Europe 2020 strategy for innovative, sustainable and inclusive growth.

The URBACT III thematic coverage includes the following Thematic Objectives:

  • Strengthening research, technological development and innovation (TO1)

  • Enhancing access to and use and quality of ICT (TO2)

  • Enhancing the competitiveness of SMEs (TO3)

  • Supporting the shift towards a low carbon economy in all sectors (TO4)

  • Promoting climate change adaptation, risk prevention and management (TO5)

  • Protecting the environment and promoting resource efficiency (TO6)

  • Promoting sustainable transport and removing bottlenecks in key network infrastructures (TO7)

  • Promoting employment and supporting labour mobility (TO8)

  • Promoting social inclusion and combating poverty (TO9)

  • Investing in education, skills and lifelong learning by developing education and training infrastructure (TO10)

A detailed description of the urban dimension of the 10 Thematic Objectives for EU Cohesion Policy 2014/2020 is available in the Fact Sheet 1 of the URBACT III Programme Manual.

Over the Programming period 2014-2020, URBACT III will concentrate 70% of resources for exchange and learning activities on Thematic Objectives 1, 4, 6, 8 and 9. Nevertheless the present Call for Proposals for Transfer Networks is open to all 10 Thematic Objectives.

Applicants shall submit their proposal under 1 of the 10 above listed Thematic Objectives, depending on the main policy challenges addressed by the Good Practice to be transferred. When considered from an integrated approach perspective, all 10 topics are strongly inter-related. For instance, fostering economic competitiveness goes hand in hand with improving social inclusion, and vice- versa. It is expected that the selected Thematic Objective will be the main entry point into the network while allowing partners to explore connections with other Thematic Objectives.

Applicants should also take into consideration, when relevant, how the network can link to the partnerships developed for the Urban Agenda for the European Union.

 

SECTION 4 - PARTNERSHIPS FOR TRANSFER NETWORKS

4.1. General framework

Transnational partnerships are cornerstones of URBACT Transfer Networks. The rules defined below shall apply to all partnerships involved in Transfer Network proposals. These rules translate into eligibility criteria (see section 8.3.) and shall thus be respected. Eligibility criteria are requirements, all of which must be fulfilled for a proposal to be declared eligible. Only eligible proposals shall be considered for further assessment and approval.

4.2. Lead Partners

All Lead Partners in Transfer Network MUST be cities with the URBACT Good Practice Label6. These cities will have been selected and labelled in the Call for Good Practices (December 2016-March 2017) and are willing to develop a Transfer Network to share and transfer this Good Practice.

Lead Partners are key actors of approved Transfer Networks. Beyond their key role in supporting the transfer of the Good Practice across the partnership, they are responsible for project implementation (financial management, coordination of the partnership, implementation of work programme and communication on the project and dissemination of project outputs). The Lead Partner also bears financial and legal responsibility and liability for the whole partnership towards the Managing Authority.

Further information on the roles and responsibilities of Lead Partners and Project Partners is available in Fact Sheet 2E “Common Provision for Network Management”.

A Good Practice City may not be Lead Partner in more than one project at a time under the same call. However, the labelled Good Practice Cities acting as Lead Partners are allowed to take part in one other Transfer Network as a Transfer City. The labelled Good Practice Cities not acting as Lead Partners may participate in one Transfer Network as a Transfer City.

4.3. Partnership for phase 1

The partnership shall include the city where the Good Practice has been successfully implemented (Good Practice City) in the position of Lead Partner, and partners willing to transfer the practice in their own local contexts (Transfer Cities).

Only cities7 can be included in the initial partnership.

At the stage of the Phase 1 Application, the initial partnership must be composed of 3 cities (including the Lead Partner) coming together to develop a common understanding of the Good Practice to be transferred, to explore the conditions and requirements for a successful transfer in the local context and define the methodology for transfer activities.

 

Partners shall be from different Member/Partner States meaning there cannot be two partners from the same Member/Partner State in a network. A State can be represented only once per network.

The initial partnership must be balanced with cities from More Developed and Less Developed8 regions. More especially, the initial partnership shall include at least 1 city from a Less Developed region.

Eligible beneficiaries may participate in no more than 1 Transfer Network at a time except for labelled Good Practice Cities than can participate in one network as Lead Partner and in another network as Transfer City.

4.4. Final Partnership for phase 2

The final partnership for the phase 2 must be composed of a minimum of 5 up to a maximum of 8 partners. A State can be represented only once per network meaning there cannot be two partners from the same Member/Partner State in each Transfer Network.

The final partnership to be presented in the Phase 2 Application can include a maximum of 2 non-city partners.9 Non city-partners included in the final partnership must be public authorities or equivalent public authorities. However, in the framework of Transfer Networks, only local agencies are considered eligible non-city partners. Provincial, regional and national authorities as well as universities and research centers are not considered as eligible partners10.

In brief, in order to be eligible, the Transfer Network final partnership shall:

  • comprise minimum 5 and maximum 8 partners (eligible beneficiaries defined in section 3.2) including the Good Practice City as Lead Partner;

  • Include no more than 2 non-city partners as defined above (local agencies);

  • be composed of partners all coming from different Member/partner States;

Include:

  • a minimum of 2 partners from Less Developed regions where the total number of partner is 5;

  • a minimum of 3 partners from Less Developed regions where the total number of partner is 6 to 7 partners.

  • a minimum of 4 partners from Less Developed regions where the total number of partner is 8 partners.

The partnership shall be composed during phase 1 and proposed in the Phase 2 application form. Projects approved and funded for phase 1 shall make the most of the 6-month development phase to extend and test the initial partnership, partners’ commitment and capacity to transfer the Good Practice.

The partnership shall include the city where the Good Practice has been successfully implemented (Good Practice City) in the position of Lead Partner, and partners willing to transfer the practice in their own local contexts (Transfer Cities).
Detailed information on the role and responsibilities of partners are provided in Fact Sheet 2E.

 

SECTION 5 - ACTIVITIES AND WORK PACKAGES

Transfer Networks shall operate and implement the network activities for a total duration of 30 months, structured into 2 phases:
Phase 1: a 6-month phase dedicated to network development
Phase 2: a 24-month phase dedicated to the implementation of network activities

The activities to be implemented by Transfer Networks, in each of the 2 phases, are organized around work packages. Work packages allow partners to develop a shared understanding about the project’s structure. Each work package has specific objectives, defined actions and related expected deliverables.

5.1. Phase 1 of Transfer Networks

During phase 1, partners involved in approved networks will work, with the support of a URBACT validated Expert, on the development of the project final proposal (detailed description of the Good Practice to be transferred, baseline situations of all cities involved including first review of conditions and requirements for successful transfer, methodology for the transfer activities, expected results, etc.), the identification of relevant local stakeholders to be involved for an effective transfer of the Good Practice at local level and a consolidated partnership. This process has to be documented and fed into the phase 2 application to be submitted at the end of phase 1.

The duration of Phase 1 is 6 months, starting from the official notification of approval that follows the decision by the Monitoring Committee.

Phase 1 shall be structured around 2 work packages:

  • Work package 1 (WP1) – Network management and coordination

  • Work package 2 (WP2) – Network development

    Main deliverables of phase 1 shall include:

  • To organise at least 1 transnational meeting gathering all partners

  • To complete a Transferability study presenting the Good Practice to be transferred,

    particularly in the European context, the baseline situation in each Transfer City and the

    methodological framework for the transfer activities

  • To complete and submit the phase 2 application including activities to be implemented by

    the network, expected outputs, work plan, financial plan, etc.

5.2. Phase 2 of Transfer Networks

Phase 2 shall be devoted to the implementation of the activities foreseen in the application form, at transnational and local level, aiming at the effective transfer of the Good Practice in each of the Transfer Cities involved in approved Transfer Networks.

The activities to be implemented by Transfer Networks are organized around work packages. Work packages allow partners to develop a shared understanding about the project’s structure. Each work package has specific objectives, defined actions and related expected deliverables.

Phase 2 Network activities and deliverables shall be structured around 4 work packages:

  • • Work package 1 – Network management and coordination
  • Work package 2 – Transnational exchange and learning

  • Work package 3 – Impact on local governance and urban policies

  • Work package 4 – Communication and dissemination

Main deliverables of phase 2 shall include:

  • Transnational study visits to the Good Practice City and transnational transfer sessions in all Transfer Cities (using appropriate methodology)

  • Production of outputs that capture the learning from all cities involved in the Transfer Network in relation to the Good Practice transferred, including improvements to enhance the practice and recommendations for cities outside the partnership

Detailed information concerning specific objectives, activities and expected outputs under each Work Package are provided in the Factsheet 2C of the URBACT III Programme Manual and in the Guide to Transfer Networks.

 

SECTION 6 – BUDGETARY ELEMENTS AND EXPERTISE RESOURCES

6.1. URBACT III Eligible Intervention rates

The ERDF co-financing rate for a Transfer Network is calculated at network level on the basis of the different co-financing rates for each partner.

  • Partners from ‘more developed’ regions shall be co-financed at up to 70% by ERDF

  • Partners from ‘less developed’ and ‘transition’ regions shall be co-financed at up to 85% by ERDF

  • Partners from Switzerland shall be co-financed at up to 50% by a Swiss national fund

  • Norway is a partner state of the URBACT programme. Norwegian cities may participate in Transfer Networks at their own cost for this call. The situation for Norwegian co-funding will be reviewed on an annual basis by the competent authorities.

6.2. Transfer Network Budgets

The maximum total eligible budget for a Transfer Network shall be 600.000€.

Transfer Networks shall be financed using European Regional Development Fund and local, regional or national contributions from city partners according to the rates outlined in section 6.1 above.

A Transfer Network shall operate in two phases. The total eligible cost for the network combining Phases 1 and 2 shall be 600 000€. The initial budget for Phase 1 shall not exceed a total eligible cost of 80.000€.

Considering the foreseen workload required in Phase 1 to ensure a well-balanced and coherent partnership, a high quality transferability study and Phase 2 application, the costs incurred for this first phase of work shall be considered eligible for refund regardless of the approval of the project into Phase 2.

The budgets for Phase 1 and 2 shall be presented using 5 budget categories as follows:

 

  • Staff costs

Expenditure on staff members employed by the partner organisation, who are formally engaged to work on the project

  • Office and Administration Costs

Operating and administrative expenses of the partner organisation that support delivery of project activities

  • Travel and Accommodation Costs

Expenditure on travel and accommodation costs of staff of partner organisations that relate to delivery of the project. This category included travel costs, accommodation costs, costs of meals, visa costs, and/or daily allowances/per diems.

  • External expertise and services

Expenditure for external expertise and services provided by a public or private body or a natural person outside of the partner organisation. This category covers costs paid on the basis of contracts or written agreements and against invoices or requests for reimbursement to external experts and service providers that are requested to carry out certain tasks or activities, linked to the delivery of the project. All additional costs related to external experts (e.g. travel and accommodation expense for external experts) should  be recorded under this budget category. This category also includes all costs linked to the organisation of meetings.

  • Equipment

Expenditure for equipment purchased, rented or leased by a partner, necessary to achieve objectives of the project.

 

Detailed information about the eligibility of costs, the methods for calculation and programme specific rules is available in the URBACT III Programme Manual, Fact Sheet 2F - Financial management and control.

6.3. Expertise

In order to support the implementation of the activities of Transfer Networks, the URBACT Programme provides to each approved Transfer Network an additional specific budget for the appointment of experts. Experts support partners in implementing their transnational activities with both thematic content and methods for exchange and learning.

More especially, the expertise envelope for Transfer Networks should provide all partners with a package of services including11:

  • Expertise for the design and delivery of transnational exchange and learning activities

  • Thematic expertise

  • Expertise support to partners in designing suitable conditions for transfer

Each network shall have an allocation of € 109,500 maximum to cover the costs of expertise over the lifetime of the project. This budget available for expertise is additional to the project budget.
As the daily expertise fee for URBACT thematic experts is set at 750 euros/ day all taxes included, this budget corresponds to an envelope of 146 days (including participation to training sessions and other activities at Programme level).

Appointed experts to be funded from this dedicated envelope shall be selected from the pool of validated URBACT Experts (see Programme Manual Fact Sheet 2C - Transfer Networks)12. The Lead Partner and Project Partners shall appoint experts following a specific procedure outlined in the URBACT III Programme Manual (Fact Sheet 2C).

For phase 1, the expertise envelope available for each network shall be used to commission an expert who will support the project development phase (transferability study, partnership completion, etc.). The expertise budget will be limited to 19.500 euros (26 days of expertise, including participation at information and training sessions organized by the URBACT Joint Secretariat). In phase 1, only one single expert may be appointed. No additional other experts may be appointed from the dedicated expertise envelope. Days not used during phase 1 may be used in phase 2.

For Phase 1, the expert working with the Transfer Network will be selected during the assessment procedure based on the recommendations from an independent panel of experts and the External Assessment Panel (EAP). Three potential URBACT validated Experts will be proposed by the Lead Partner in the Phase 1 Application Form. It should be noted that only experts who have not been  directly involved in developing the application can be proposed in this section. A strict conflict of interest procedure will be followed.

For phase 2, the allocation of days to the Lead Expert shall not exceed 80% of the days remaining in the envelope at the end of phase 1. The rest of the envelope should be used for ad-hoc expertise.

The available budget shall cover days of expertise only. Travel and accommodation costs for URBACT validated Experts funded under this envelop shall be covered by the network budget.

Transfer Networks can contract additional experts for specific tasks (e.g. coordination of the URBACT Local Group, local animation, technical assistance, etc.) through the network budget under the category “External expertise”.

 

SECTION 7 - THE CREATION OF TRANSFER NETWORKS – A TWO-PHASE PROCESS

In order to improve the quality of networks approved for funding, the URBACT III Programme foresees a two-phase process for Transfer Networks. The process includes:

  • Phase 1: Transfer Networks approved by the Monitoring Committee enter the 6-month Phase 1. The main aim of Phase 1 is to provide partners of Transfer Networks with time and resources to ensure:

    o thedevelopmentofacommonunderstandingoftheGoodPracticetobetransferred, o consolidation of partnership by exploring the conditions and requirements for a

    successful transfer in the local contexts of all partners,
    o elaborationofasharedmethodologyfortransferactivities;

    These elements shall be explored in the Transferability study exercise, the results of which shall be included in the Proposal for Phase 2 to be submitted at the end of the initial 6-month Phase 1.

  • Phase 2: Transfer Networks approved by the Monitoring Committee enter the 24-month Phase 2 for the implementation of the activities at transnational and local level as foreseen in the Phase 2 Proposals.

    As a consequence of the 2-phase approach, the creation of Transfer Networks in URBACT III is a two- stage process described below:

7.1. Submission of Phase 1 Applications

The submission of Phase 1 Applications is the first stage. Its purpose is to select and approve projects that will be funded for the 6-month Phase 1. Information to be provided by applicants in Phase 1 Applications is introduced under Section 10 of the present Call for Proposals and detailed in the ‘Guide to Transfer Networks’. Annex 1 presents an outline of the main headings of the application form.

Detailed information on how to create and submit a Phase 1 Application through the online system Synergie-CTE is provided in the “Practical Guide for the creation and submission of phase 1 applications of Transfer Networks”.

Phase 1 Applications will be checked against the eligibility criteria by the Joint Secretariat and assessed by the EAP. Eligible applications, along with EAP assessment results and recommendations, will be submitted by the URBACT Managing Authority to the URBACT Monitoring Committee for approval. Only Transfer Network proposals approved by the Monitoring Committee will receive funding to implement the activities planned for Phase 1.

Eligibility and assessment criteria for the selection of Transfer Networks for Phase 1 are presented under Section 8 of the present Call for Proposals.

7.2. Submission of Phase 2 Applications

The submission of Phase 2 Applications at the end of Phase 1 is the second stage. Its purpose is to assess the quality and relevance of project proposals, improve the quality of projects whenever necessary, and approve projects to enter the 24-month Phase 2.

Phase 2 Applications will be checked against the eligibility criteria by the Joint Secretariat and assessed by an independent panel of experts, the External Assessment Panel (EAP). The EAP may organize hearings of candidate Lead Partners and Lead Experts as part of the assessment process. Eligible applications assessed by the EAP, along with EAP assessment results and recommendations, will be submitted by the URBACT Managing Authority to the URBACT Monitoring Committee for the final approval. Only Transfer Network proposals approved by the Monitoring Committee will receive funding to implement the main activities planned for Phase 2.

Projects not approved for Phase 2 will be refunded for the costs incurred during Phase 1 up to a maximum of 80.000 euros.

Eligibility and assessment criteria for Phase 2 Applications will be available for approved Phase 1 projects at the start of their network development phase.

 

SECTION 8 – DETAILED PROCEDURE FOR THE CREATION OF TRANSFER NETWORKS IN THE FRAME OF THE CALL FOR PROPOSALS

8.1. General overview

Projects replying to this call for proposals shall be required to follow a structured application procedure and will be subject to a selection process. Each project shall be submitted twice to the URBACT III Monitoring Committee

  • in the form of a Phase 1 Application to be submitted in the framework of the open call for proposals

  • in the form of a Phase 2 Application to be submitted, at the end of phase 1, by networks that have been approved and funded for phase 1

    Decisions by the Monitoring Committee shall be final.

    The different stages of the application procedure are outlined in detail in the Programme Manual (Fact Sheet 2D - Network Creation). They can be summarised as follows:

 

0. Open call for proposals for the creation of Transfer Networks

 

1. APPLICATION PHASE 1

Stage 1

Lead Partner completes and submits a Phase 1 Application and all requested documents to the URBACT Joint Secretariat by 10 January 2018 13

Stage 2

URBACT Joint Secretariat performs eligibility check.

Stage 3

External Assessment Panel carries out assessment of eligible project proposals and issues recommendations.

Stage 4

URBACT Managing Authority submits proposal for the approval of up to 25 Transfer Networks to the Monitoring Committee. Monitoring Committee approves projects for the 6-month Phase 1. Transfer Networks approved for Phase 1 shall receive funding and a subsidy contract that marks the final stage of approval of the project for Phase 1.

6-MONTH PHASE 1 FOR APPROVED TRANSFER NETWORKS (April 2018 - October 2018)

 

2. APPLICATION PHASE 2

Stage 5

Lead Partner submits Phase 2 Application along with requested documents 6 months after the start of Phase 1. Phase 2 Proposal will be completed as a result of Phase I activities (building on the transferability study)

6 Months following notification of approval by MC – October 2018

 

Stage 6

URBACT Joint Secretariat performs eligibility check.

 

Stage 7

External Assessment Panel carries out assessment of eligible project applications and issues recommendations. EAP may interview candidate Lead Partners and Lead Experts and issues recommendations for possible improvements of applications if relevant.

 

Stage 8

URBACT Managing Authority submits to the Monitoring Committee a proposal for the approval of Transfer Networks for Phase 2. Transfer Networks approved for Phase 2 shall receive funding and a subsidy contract that marks the final stage of approval of the project for Phase 214.

MC meeting approx. December 2018

 

24-MONTH PHASE 2 FOR APPROVED TRANSFER NETWORKS (December 2018 - December 2020)

 

 

8.2. Stage 1 – Procedure for the submission of Phase 1 Applications

To submit network proposals, applicants shall complete the 2 following steps:

1) To complete and submit their Phase 1 Application through Synergie-CTE in English. In order to open an application form in the SYNERGIE-CTE system, a Good Practice City willing to lead a Transfer Network should send a request via email to TN@urbact.eu. The URBACT
Joint Secretariat will take care of opening the online application

form for the applicant.
A ‘Practical Guide to the creation and submission of Phase 1 Applications of Transfer Networks’ is available for technical support. Only applications submitted using Synergie-CTE will be accepted.

The deadline for the online submission of the Phase 1 Applications is 10 January 2018, 15.00 CET. After this deadline, the Synergie-CTE system will be closed.

2) To send the application package composed of the scan of the signed PDF of the Phase 1 Application generated through Synergie-CTE and all additional requested documents (a list of additional documents is provided below) by email to TN@urbact.eu.

The email shall be received by the URBACT Joint Secretariat no later than 11 January 2018, 15.00 CET.

Applicants shall send by email all the following documents:

  • Scanned signed PDF version of the submitted Phase 1 Application generated through Synergie-CTE. It must be duly signed by the local coordinator at the Lead Partner’s;

  • Letters of commitment in English for ALL partners included in the partnership (one letter for the Lead Partner plus one letter for each Project Partner) using the templates annexed to this Call for Proposals. Letters of Commitment shall be signed by an elected representative of the partner institution;

  • CV of the Project Coordinator at the Lead Partner;

  • CV of the 3 proposed URBACT validated Experts to be potentially appointed for phase 1

    (downloaded from the URBACT website);

    The submission of the Phase 1 Application package is paper free.

8.3. Stage 2 – Eligibility check of Phase 1 Applications

The URBACT Joint Secretariat will check all received applications against the eligibility criteria. Eligibility criteria for Phase 1 applications are minimum requirements, all of which must be fulfilled before a project can be declared eligible for further assessment. They cover organisational, administrative and commitment requirements. Only eligible projects can be submitted by the Managing Authority to the Monitoring Committee for approval.

 

The proposals submitted to the URBACT Joint Secretariat within the deadline and respecting the procedure outlined in the call will be checked for compliance with the eligibility criteria listed below:

Phase 1 - Eligibility Criteria

o The application package is submitted in English, respecting the procedure outlined in the call for proposals and within the notified deadline.

o The application package is complete including the required documents set out in the call.

o The proposal is complete in terms of information and data required in the documents (application form and letters of commitment have been properly filled in and signed using the official templates and according to the instructions).

o The proposal fulfils the requirements for Phase 1 partnership bringing together 3 candidate cities from at least 3 Member/ Partner States including the Good Practice City as Lead Partner.

o The proposed partnership respects the balance between partners from More Developed, Transition and Less Developed regions and includes at least 1 city from a less Developed region.

o The candidate Lead Partner is candidate Lead Partner in one URBACT proposal only under the related call.

o All candidate partners are eligible according to the URBACT Programme rules.
o The maximum budget for Phase 1 applications (80k € total eligible cost) has been respected.

 

8.4. Stage 3 – Assessment of eligible Phase 1 Applications

Eligible Phase 1 Applications shall be assessed by an External Assessment Panel. Information about the External Assessment Panel is provided in the Fact Sheet 2D of the URBACT III Programme Manual. The assessment criteria for project proposals for phase 1 are outlined below:

Phase 1 - Assessment Criteria

Criterion A - Relevance of the policy issue addressed

For this criterion, assessors will more especially consider the following dimensions:

  1. 1)  The proposal contributes to the objectives of the EU2020 strategy and it is in line with one or more of the Thematic Objectives for EU Cohesion Policy 2014-2020

  2. 2)  The proposal is relevant in the current European Urban policy context.

  3. 3)  The theme of the Good Practice to be transferred is relevant to EU cities

  4. 4)  The proposal clearly demonstrates the added value of creating a Transfer Network for the Good Practice

Criterion B - Coherence of the proposal

For this criterion, assessors will more especially consider the following dimensions:

  1. 1)  The proposed methodology for Phase 1 will allow for a clear analysis of the Good Practice to be transferred

  2. 2)  The proposed methodology will ensure the selection of suitable partners for transfer in Phase 2

  3. 3)  The proposal generally demonstrates a good understanding of the main objectives of Transfer Networks

  4. 4)  The proposal has a clear focus on exchange of experiences and it builds on partners’ needs and  knowledge for transfer

  5. 5) The proposed methodology is realistic and coherent (the activities are logically sequenced and interlinked)

 

Criterion C - Quality of the proposal for Phase 1

For this criterion, assessors will more especially consider the following dimensions:

  1. 1)  The work plan for Phase 1 is clearly presented with description of the planned activities and expected outputs

  2. 2)  The activities are logically interlinked and in line with the objectives for Phase 1 (production of the Transferability study, elaboration of the Phase 2 Application)

  3. 3)  The Methodology for the production of the Transferability study is clearly set out

  4. 4)  The project budget is proportionate to the proposed work plan and the main outputs and results proposed.

  5. 5)  The project budget is justified, clear and realistic.

Criterion D - Quality of proposed partnership

For this criterion, assessors will more especially consider the following dimensions:

  1. 1)  The initial Phase 1 Transfer Cities are relevant and demonstrate a suitability to transfer the Good Practice

  2. 2)  The proposed partnership for Phase 1 covers an appropriate mix of EU Member States (for example ensuring adequate coverage of Central and Eastern Europe, Northern, Western and Southern Europe). In cases where the geographical coverage is limited, this is clearly justified in Phase 1 application.

  3. 3)  The Good Practice can provide a possible response to a need identified in the Transfer Cities

  4. 4)  The Transfer City partners are capable to transfer the Good Practice (e.g. having appropriate competence, resources, political support and motivation)

  5. 5)  The Good Practice City demonstrates a clear willingness to transfer the Good Practice and learn and improve it using the Transfer Network

Criterion E - Quality of leadership

For this criterion, assessors will more especially consider the following dimensions:

  1. 1)  The Lead Partner demonstrates competency in managing EU co-financed projects or can ensure adequate measures for management support

  2. 2)  The named person to act for the Lead Partner (project coordinator) has experience (from attached CV) of this type of work

  3. 3)  The project coordination at the Lead Partner’s is well organised and clearly presented (who will do which tasks) Sufficient resources are indicated for the lead Partner tasks

  4. 4)  The designated URBACT validated expert(s) have relevant experience in supporting transnational exchange and learning activities and relevant expertise in relation with the issues to be addressed by the network

 

8.5. Stage 4 – Submission to the Monitoring Committee and approval

Building on the report provided by the External Assessment Panel, the Monitoring Committee shall decide on the approval of projects to enter Phase 1. Decisions by the Monitoring Committee shall be final.

After approval by the Monitoring Committee, the information on approved projects shall be published on the URBACT website.

Approved applications shall receive a subsidy contract which marks the final stage of approval of the Phase 1 project. Additional information on the subsidy contract is available in Fact Sheet 2E of the URBACT III Programme Manual. The project shall then be fully operational and can start working on Phase 1.

During Phase 1, the Lead Partner and Project Partners, with the support of the URBACT validated Expert, shall complete the Phase 2 Application to submit their final proposal for Phase 2. This will be done in English through the online system Synergie-CTE by updating and providing additional information to the initial application submitted for Phase 1. Terms of reference and guidance for the completion of the Phase 2 Application will be provided by the URBACT Joint Secretariat to the projects approved for Phase 1. It shall include, amongst other things, a detailed definition of the network objectives and expected outputs, a work programme including a plan for the use and management of experts and a budget by category and partner.

A full guide as well as the application form shall be provided to approved Phase 1 projects. The eligibility and assessment criteria will be included in this guide.

 

SECTION 9 – COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE

Lead Partners of rejected project proposals are informed in writing about the reasons why an application was not eligible or not approved. Questions in relation to the assessments will be examined and answered by the Managing Authority/Joint Secretariat. Projects that have not been selected for funding have the right to file a formal complaint on the decision of the Monitoring Committee.

In principle, complaints can only be lodged against the following criteria: (1) the assessment does not take into consideration information supplied in the application and (2) the project assessment and selection process failed to comply with the specific procedures laid down in the call publication and programme manual, which as a consequence may have affected the decision.

Only the project’s Lead Partner can file a complaint. Potential partner complaints have to be passed through the Lead Partner. Complaints should be submitted electronically to the Joint Secretariat within 3 weeks after the official notification of the non-selection of the project by the Managing Authority. This deadline shall not prejudice the start of the other projects approved by the Monitoring Committee.

The complaints will be examined and answered by a complaint panel involving the chair of the URBACT Monitoring Committee, the URBACT Managing Authority/Joint Secretariat and the chair of the External Assessment Panel. If deemed necessary, the complaint panel may decide to submit a complaint to the Monitoring Committee of the programme for review.

 

SECTION 10 - CONTENT OF PHASE 1 APPLICATION

Projects wishing to apply for funding within the frame of this Call for Proposals shall fill in and submit the Phase 1 Application through the online Synergie-CTE platform. All applications shall be filled in in English.

Proposals for Phase 1 mainly cover the initial 6 months (in terms of work programme and budget) but should also start to reflect upon the methodology proposed for transfer in Phase 2.

Here below the list of the main sections to be completed in order to submit a Phase 1 Proposal:

  • Presentation of the project proposal: applicants shall define the transferability and subsequent enhancement of the Good Practice successfully implemented by the Good Practice City in relation to the local contexts of Transfer Cities. It is important to highlight the link with the EU2020 strategy, the Urban Agenda for the EU if relevant and the Thematic Objectives for Cohesion Policy 2014 as well as to explain how the project will contribute to the specific objective for Transfer Networks.

  • Presentation of the main approach proposed for the network activities: applicants shall describe the methodological approach for exchange and learning activities at transnational and local level to ensure an effective transfer of the Good Practice. Under the related sections, applicants shall demonstrate how the proposed methodological approach, actions and deliverables are logically interlinked.

  • Presentation of the proposed partnership: applicants shall highlight, for each city partner involved in the partnership:

    •   The partner’s local situation in relation to the Good Practice to be transferred;

    •   The experience and specific conditions and requirements of partners related to the transfer of the Good Practice and their potential contribution to the exchange and learning activities;

    •   The specific needs and expected results of partners.

  • Description of the main activities to be implemented during Phase 1: applicants shall describe how the main activities included under the 2 Work Packages for Phase 1 (WP1 Network Management and Coordination and WP2 Network Development) will be implemented. More especially applicants are requested to detail the proposed approach for the production of the Transferability study. Detailed information concerning the Transferability study is available in the Guide to Transfer Networks.

  • Choice of 3 potential URBACT validated Experts the initial partnership would like to work with including a justification.

  • Budget for Phase 1: applicants shall provide information about the budget required to deliver the activities proposed based around 5 budget categories. An individual project partner budget shall also be provided. More detailed information on budgetary issues can be found in section 6 of this document and in the Guide to Transfer Networks.

    For the preparation of the Phase 1 Applications applicants are requested to refer to:

• The URBACT III Programme Manual - Fact sheet 2C – Transfer Networks;

 

  • The ‘Guide to Transfer Networks’ for detailed information concerning the main activities to be implemented;

  • ‘Practical Guide to the creation and submission of Phase 1 Applications of Transfer Networks’ for practical instructions on how to complete and submit Phase 1 proposals through Synergie-CTE;

  • The present call for proposals.

 

 

SECTION 11 - IMPORTANT DATES FOR APPLICANTS

Applicants are invited to take note of the 5 following milestones:

• Submission of proposals
Phase 1 Applications shall be submitted by 10 January 2018 15 - 15.00 CET at the latest, following the procedure outlined above in section 8.

• Approval for Development phase
Eligible project proposals will be submitted to the Monitoring Committee for approval of funding for Phase 1.

• Training session at the beginning of Phase 1
Lead Partners and URBACT validated Experts of approved projects will be requested to attend the Training Session organized in Paris shortly after the approval of the networks.
As this is considered a capacity-building event, the programme will cover Travel and Accommodation costs for participants.

 

SECTION 12 - USEFUL RESOURCES

• URBACT Joint Secretariat

Applicants may contact members of the URBACT Joint Secretariat for clarification related to the submission of applications. For all questions concerning the Call for Proposals for Transfer Network, applicants are invited to contact the URBACT Joint Secretariat at the following dedicated address: (TN@urbact.eu).

  • Good Practices webpage on the URBACT website http://urbact.eu/good-practices/home

  • Frequently Asked Questions

    A Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section is available on the URBACT website: http://urbact.eu/faq

• Useful Documents

In preparing their Phase 1 Application, applicants are invited to refer to the following documents:

  • URBACT III Operational Programme

  • URBACT III Programme Manual, and in particular o FactSheet1–TheURBACTProgramme o FactSheet2C–TransferNetworks
    o FactSheet2D–NetworkCreation

    o FactSheet2E–NetworkManagement

    o FactSheet2F–Financialmanagementandcontrol

  • Guide to Transfer Networks

  • Practical Guide to the creation and submission of Phase 1 applications of Transfer Networks

  • URBACT Toolkit for Local Support Groups (this toolkit is an URBACT II guide on creating Local Action Plans. It was produced mainly to help those involved in the past URBACT projects to produce their Local Action Plans now called Integrated Action Plans, however, it is of relevance for Transfer Networks as well) Key documents are available on the webpage dedicated to the call.

  • • Database of URBACT III validated experts http://urbact.eu/experts-list



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