Brussels, Jan 2006
Delegations will find attached a proposal from the COST Office on the "Open Call and Selection Criteria for new COST Actions" to be examined by the JAF Group at its meeting on 15/16 February 2006.
Following the examination the JAF Group is invited to submit the proposal to the 164th CSO meeting in March for approval.
Delegations, in particular those not represented at the JAF meeting, are kindly requested to send their comments on the proposal, if any, to the Secretariat by 10 February 2006 at the latest.
The COST Office was asked by the CSO to prepare a proposal for the Open Call and Selection Criteria for new COST Actions and YINs.1 Since this process implies significant changes to traditional procedures in the COST system an expert group was invited to assist the preparation of this proposal. This expert group included a JAF/CSO member, specialists from the European Commission, ESF and DFG as well as COST Office staff. The experts group met on 16 December 2005 in Brussels.
The proposal has been prepared bearing in mind that COST has to set priorities in order to cope with increased competitiveness. Selecting the most promising COST Actions across the new nine Domains should be based on external expertise, as it is common practice in Europe. This requires a set of well defined general criteria. Aspects such as potential impact, network interaction, and added value through interdisciplinary collaboration, geographical integration and avoiding of double funding should be considered.
a) Open Call
An Open Call for both, the traditional "COST Actions" and for the new instrument "Young Investigator Networks", is to be launched 1 April 2006. This call is to be published on the COST web site, on CORDIS, on the ESF website and in Nature and Science, following the outline in Annex I.
A first collection date is foreseen at the end of May 2006.
b) Selection procedure
The following procedure will be applied for all COST instruments ("COST Actions" and "YINs") submitted under the Open Call.
- Preliminary Proposals (based on the web template requiring max. 1500 words) are to be submitted on-line to a dedicated data-base, operated by the COST Office, which will also perform a formal pre-check. The proposer can indicate a preferred Domain.
- The COST Office will allocate the preliminary proposals to the respective Domains based on proposer's preference and its own judgment.
Preliminary proposals that are not assigned to a single COST Domain will be considered as Interdisciplinary Exploratoria (IE) and referred to an "IE mentor" for evaluation. The "IE mentor" is normally a member of the CSO.
1 A proposal for a new COST instrument as set out in doc. COST 204/06.
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