Who will evaluate the submitted proposals?
Evaluation of proposals for this call is undertaken by a separate expert panel composed of internationally-renowned scientists. These experts (reviewers) are chosen for their expertise in the field of the topics of the call, their thematic orientation, their overall expertise in brain research and neurodegenerative diseases and their complementary expertise with regard to these fields. Reviewers are appointed based on their scientific expertise and their selection is not restricted to countries participating in JPND. Insofar as possible, JPND will strive to ensure a balance of gender and country representation of the review panel members. The reviewers will not adopt national considerations nor will they represent any of the JPND joint call partner organisations.
Who decides which proposals receive funding?
The final decision on which proposals receive funding is taken by the JPND funding organisations. However, this decision does, of course, depend on the results of the scientific evaluation, which is done by an independent peer review panel. This panel of experts decides whether a proposal receives a funding recommendation or not. Proposals with no funding recommendation cannot be funded. Proposals that are recommended for funding will be ranked by the peer review panel according to their quality, based on the evaluation criteria described in the call text. Funding will be given to the very best proposals of this ranking list, taking into account the available national budgets and the top-up funding of the European Commission.
On which criteria will proposals be selected for funding?
All proposals will undergo a scientific peer review evaluation, which will result in a funding recommendation for each proposal. The evaluation criteria are specified in detail in the call text. Please note that criterion “excellence” will be double weighted in the evaluation, (i.e., scientific excellence of the proposal will count for 50% of the final evaluation score).
All proposals submitted under this call will be evaluated collectively and compared against each other. This will result in one final ranking list (i.e. no separate ranking list for the three topics of the call). The balance of awards between the three topics will be suggested by the Peer Review Panel and will depend on the quality of the proposals.
How many stages of decision making will be applied to a proposal?
For this call, there will be two steps of decision-making: A pre-proposal and a full proposal decision.
Firstly, the submitted pre-proposals are evaluated based on international scientific peer review, and a decision is made on which proposals to invite for the full proposal stage. Co-ordinators who submitted a pre-proposal will be informed by the JPND Joint Call Secretariat about the outcome of the pre-proposal evaluation by mid of May.
Secondly, co-ordinators of successful pre-proposals will be offered to submit a full proposal within a time-frame of six weeks. All information on the full proposal stage will automatically be sent by the JPND Joint Call Secretariat. Full proposals are evaluated by international scientific peer review. Following the peer review process, the JPND funding organisations finally decide on which proposals will receive funding. Again, co-ordinators who submitted a full proposal will be informed by the JPND Joint Call Secretariat on the final funding decision by end of October.
How long does it take until a funding decision is made?
The decision on all submitted pre-proposals will be communicated approximately two months after the original submission deadline (mid of May). Co-ordinators of successful pre-proposals will then be offered to submit a full proposal within a time-frame of six weeks. The separate decision on full proposals will be communicated approximately four months after the full proposal submission deadline (end of October).
Please note that the indicated time points of decision communication are based on former experience and may vary. However, in all cases, co-ordinators of all submitted pre- and full proposals will automatically be contacted by the JPND Joint Call Secretariat as soon as a decision can be communicated.
What happens to a consortium if one or several partner(s) cannot be funded?
It should be noted that research groups are not funded by JPND directly but by the participating national/regional funding organisations of their country. Each organisation has its own individual budget allocation for the call. In addition, the European Commission (EC) is providing top-up funding for this call, which will be used to “top-up” the respective budgets of the funding organisations to fund additional proposals.
It can happen that a consortium recommended for funding contains one or more research groups from an organisation that has already spent its budget completely (for example, because the respective budget had already been allocated to research groups from other consortia which were ranked higher). In this scenario, the JPND funding organisations will attempt to find a solution to secure funding of that consortium. This means that the respective organisation may either increase its individual budget or the top-up budget provided by the EC can be used. However, in the case where no solution can be found (i.e., individual and EC budget spent completely), the proposal will be rejected and the entire consortium will not be funded.
What happens to proposals of very similar scope?
In principle, proposals of similar scope are welcome. It is up to the scientific Peer Review Panel to suggest whether both (or several) proposals should receive a funding recommendation and be ranked equally. In that case, and taken into account that enough remaining budget is available, both (or several) proposals can be funded.
Can I revise my proposal at any stage?
Yes. A revision is included after the pre-proposal evaluation. In this revision phase it will be possible to modify the proposal, e.g. changing partners, budgets or the work plan. Please note that all changes need a scientific justification. Details on the revision phase are given in the call text. Applicants are responsible for ensuring that any changes are in line with the eligibility criteria of the call. Changes that exceed the conditions for revision or result in full proposals not meeting the eligibility criteria may be rejected without further review.
A revision of the proposal is restricted to pre-proposals that are selected for the full proposal stage (i.e., pre-proposals rejected after the pre-proposal evaluation must not be revised). Full proposals will be accepted only from those applicants explicitly invited by the JCS to submit them.