The role of coordinators, especially in collaborative projects based on the cooperation of high number of participants, is very important and demanding. Administrative as well as expert skills are necessary for the management of the teams from different national environments. As a benefit in addition to the higher contribution from the EC, the coordination brings also a so called ‘pull effect’ – it means the coordinator usually pulls up other partners from his/her country. The pull effect has also positive impact on the involvement of the institutions with no previous experience with the framework programmes´ projects.
Analysed data shown in Fig. 1 are taken from the E-CORDA database (version 7, 28/02/2017)
Increase of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) participation in research projects has been one of the priorities of EU research programmes. We focus on this issue within environmental priorities of 7th Framework Programme (FP7) and Horizon 2020 programme (H2020). In FP7, environmental research was mainly included in Environment (including Climate change) topic, in H2020 we find it in so-called Societal Challenge 5: Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials.
Our source of data, the H2020 E-CORDA database (version 5, 31/05/2016), allows for a rough categorization of research teams according to their predominant activities: universities, research organizations, private and public sector, SMEs and others. In FP7, SMEs constituted 15.62 % and 14.44 % of all participants in proposals and grants, respectively. With a shift of H2020 orientation towards innovation and requirement of specific solutions the increase of SMEs entering the projects as end-users or demanders could be expected. Indeed, the share of SMEs in H2020 increased to 35.54 % in proposals and 21.66 % in grants. But we have to take into account the new H2020 type of action, so-called SME instrument designed for SMEs only. After exclusion of this instrument we are coming to 19.49 % of SMEs in proposals and 15.8 % in grants. The increase of SMEs share in “classical” project types is still visible, but especially in case of grants much less significant. Above mentioned data comprise participants from all countries whereas Figures 1 and 2 describe the situation in EU countries only.