• Posted 15-Feb-2021

ANALYSIS OF GRANT PROPOSALS CONFIRMS CONSISTENCY OF EU FUNDING AGENCIES’ PEER-REVIEW PROCESS AFTER ORGANISATIONAL CHANGES

Following the transition from the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) to Horizon 2020, a meta-analysis explored the impact of two changes made to the peer-review process in the evaluation of grant proposals, for reasons of simplification.

In 2014, the European Union transitioned from the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) to Horizon 2020. Following this transition, a meta-analysis explored the impact of two changes made to the peer-review process in the evaluation of grant proposals, for reasons of simplification. It concluded that the outcomes of the process remained stable following these two organisational changes implemented.

The first change was a reduction in the evaluation criteria applied to assess applications from four or more to three: excellence, impact, and implementation. Policymakers wanted to align the evaluation criteria of all the actions in the framework programmes for simplification purposes. Consequently, the additional derogation for the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) actions (formerly MCA) was removed.

The second change involved a move from in-person to virtual meetings, to reduce the number of consensus meetings held in Brussels. It was also part of an effort to reduce the cost and carbon footprint of said meetings, and to ease the burden placed on reviewers.

The study was published on 13 January as a feature article on eLife, and it aimed to address the lack of substantial research into funding agencies’ use of peer review for the evaluation of grant applications and proposals. The analysis involved 75,000 MSCA grant proposals between 2007 and 2018.

Source: European Commission I Research Executive Agency (https://bit.ly/372bBbb)

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