The Eurostars programme was launched as an SME-friendly, European level funding scheme. 100m€ of FP7 money was added to 300m€ from national governments to fund research in small international consortia consisting primarily of research performing SMEs. The programme is administered by the EUREKA secretariat, established by national governments. Funding works according to the rules of each national agency which support participants from their country.
One of the programme’s objectives was to award contracts within six months of proposal submission. A recent external review of the programme reports that this is not being achieved. For the first two calls of the programme, timescales averaged 11.4 months. This is remarkably similar to the time frames experienced for collaborative research projects funded directly by the EC, which averaged 11.5 months.
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