Between the Framework Programs Four and Five the Commission was forced to resign by the European Parliament after some alleged scandal that involved, partly, research funding. In particular, a new Research Commissioner was appointed and he has implemented major changes in the program that are being initially introduced in this Framework Program Six. At the same time a new Financial Regulation was adopted. The overall changes are the largest since the initial Framework. Changes have not only been made to the legal instruments, but also to the contractual conditions. The funding rules are significantly different. In most respects these changes were intended to make participation less bureaucratic for organisations, however initially it has increased problems as both participants and the Commission become familiar with the modus vivendi and the fairly obvious mistakes in some of the changes implemented.
Proposals are now submitted without signatures, even for coordinator Changes in liability rules for participants - industrial participants now have “collective responsibility” Rules for minimum number of partners increased from two to three More autonomy for project consortia New contracts will allow projects to begin when coordinator and Commission have signed Advance payments to consortium can now be made annually – not only for first year Interim cost statements can now be regarded as final. Final cost statement can only cover last period. Contractors must use their normal financial systems to calculate costs and not an imposed one Cost categories have been eliminated FF Cost Model has been replaced by FCF model effectively reducing overheads from 80% to 20% AC Cost Model has been modified slightly, but is virtually identical Audit certificates are required for all cost statements, to speed up the payment process Management costs will be fully paid at 100% of full cost to a limit of 7% of EC contribution, balance at activity rate IPR rules are more flexible
- Mandatory Consortium Agreements