ICT Innovation for Manufacturing SMEs
Is it possible to use licensed software in any of the stages?
The use of licensed software is allowed. However, please take into account the eventual technical difficulties to use it (different in the three stages).
Concerning the first stage, simulation, challengers will have to implement their solution on a virtual machine. This virtual machine will be uploaded/sent to us for the final evaluation and run on our servers. Licensed software is technically acceptable as long as it can be executed on the virtual machine hosted on the evaluation server as follows:
Is it allowed to bring own hardware in the second stage?
It is definitively not forbidden to bring own hardware. Please contact the corresponding challenge host if this is scheduled.
What kind of costs can be claimed?
EuRoC followed the funding rules of FP7 (not H2020) since it has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no. 608849.
In particular the challengers can claim personnel and travel costs plus a small amount of "other costs". Please take into account that, for the third stage, the budget has to schedule the costs necessary to bring the hardware to the end-user site.
Can non-EU organizations participate in EuRoC?
The official challengers must be legal entities based in Europe. Please see Section I of the call: "Any legal entity (or teams composed by legal entities), whether established in an EU member state or associated country may participate in the EuRoC challenges". However, non-EU organizations may participate as team members of an European partner. Their funding is governed by the bilateral-agreements between the EU and their respective country.
What about Swiss participants?
EuRoC runs under FP7 rules and in FP7 Switzerland is considered an associated country. So Swiss participants are eligible.
Can non-EU individuals (natural persons) participate in EuRoC?
The official challengers must be legal entities based in Europe. Non-EU individuals may participate joining a research team in Europe which is applying to one of the challenges.
How is the accepted funding distributed - in Stage II and III - to Challenger Teams? How are costs reimbursed to the Challenger Teams?
The Challenger Teams admitted to Stage II will receive a pre-financing of 35% of total funding by the Coordinator. The same applies for teams admitted to Stage III. Then, Challenger Teams in Stage II and III follow the normal (yearly) reporting periods of EuRoC: At the end of each reporting period a cost claim (including the costs claimed by Challenger Teams) is submitted to EC. Accepted costs are then reimbursed by the Coordinator to the Challenger Teams according to standard EC rules for cost reimbursement.
Are there any constraints related to the budget distribution internal to a Challenger Teams?
No. The budget distribution is the result of an internal agreement between the partners of a Challenger Team.
Can the same institution participate to more than one Challenge?
Yes, but for each Challenge a different application form must be submitted.
Can the same research institute participate with more than one team in the same Challenge?
Yes, that's possible as long as can be demonstrated that the different teams and their solutions will be completely independent. It's not allowed for a person to be part of more than one team.
Are there any constraints related to the number of European countries involved in a Challenger Team?
No. A Challenger Teams might be formed by entities all belonging to the same European country.
Can teams excluded in Stage I and external entities (i.e., not involved in Stage I) be recruited by prospective challengers during the match-making phase?
Yes, as long as the recruited entities meet the eligibility conditions.
How are IPRs (Intellectual Property Rights) managed in EuRoC?
EuRoC follows the rules given in Part C of the Annex II of the FP7 Grant Agreement (http://ec.europa.eu/research/participants/data/ref/fp7/93289/fp7-ga-annex2_en.pdf). According to the EuRoC Grant Agreement the ownership of the knowledge created under the project will be of the beneficiary that carried out the work that generated it. In the case of the challenger teams this means a joint ownership of the solution and in the proposal we expect indications on how you think to exploit it. Not all partners necessarily have to be involved in the exploitation. In general, it's EU policy that beneficiaries should use the new knowledge and they are invited to protect it, for instance by patenting. The only obligation vs. EU is that the end user has to mention that the solution was created with the financial help of the EU.
Should we take care in our budget for the costs of the HW to be used in stage III on the End User's site?
No, the same HW of the Challenge Host that you use in stage II can be used in stage III at the End User's site. In your budget you should take care for the costs of transport and insurance of the HW.
Are research challengers allowed to submit two different proposals with two different use cases?
No, each challenger that qualified for the simulation phase can submit only one proposal.
Where will the challenge workshop and the evaluation panel for stage II take place?
They will take place at the site of the Challenge Host.
Can a Technology Developer or System Integrator that applied for the specific call be part of more than one Challenger Team?
Yes it's possible for a Technology developer or System Integrator to participate in more than one consortium for the submission of a project proposal. The only limit is that they should keep strictly seperated the different teams, so they should offer different contributions (the same contribution cannot be funded twice) and no exchange of information from one team to another is permitted without explicit permission of all other team members.
Is there a maximum for the number of person months in the proposal budget?
No, the only fixed number is the total requested funding for each stage.
Is there a possibility to re-submit the proposal after a first submission?
Yes, until the deadline you can replace your proposal by a new version.
Are dissemination costs and costs of participation to conferences eligible “other costs” for the Challenger Team?
In general the costs of the Challengers are supposed to be concentrated in RTD activities. General dissemination activities will be carried out by the EuRoC core consortium. However, if you have "other activities" which are very closely related to your specific challenger team project (for example IPR protection, publications etc.) you can put them in your budget.
It's indicated that the proposal should consist of 15 pages but the sum of the page indications in the template exceeds this limit. What is the limit to be respected?
You should respect the limits indicated for each section in the template.
Do we have to report in the proposal the whole EU table of questions regarding the ethical issues?
No, from the list of ethical issues you should handle those that have importance for your proposal.
In what case should I take care in my budget for the costs for a certificate on the financial statement (CFS)?
In the case that one single partner of the Challenger Team will have a requested funding exceeding € 375K.
What are the depreciation rules for small equipment that we plan to purchase?
You should follow the normal depreciation rules of your organisation, taking into account also the period that the equipment will be used for the project and the % of usage of the equipment on the project.
Which costs have to be covered by the team? Flight, Workshop Fee (164 GBP), ... ?
No other costs are foreseen. The workshop fee includes lunch on 16th, coffee break, dinner, hotel accommodation, breakfast on 17th, coffee break, lunch.
Are any costs covered by the EUROC project?
Travel expenses and workshop fee will be eligible costs for research challengers that qualified for the simulation phase but will fail to be selected for stage II. They will have a reimbursement up to € 5K and those expenses can be part of this amount. Instead, for teams that will be selected for stage II they will be no eligible costs, since they will have to access the EuRoC Grant Agreement and the Brokerage Workshop takes place before their accession signature. For them these costs have to be considered in the same way as costs related to the negotiation with the EC for proposals under FP7.
How many team members per team would you expect?
As many as you consider useful for the team. Maybe two persons could be sufficient.
Is it mandatory to attend?
No, you can arrange your match-making also offline. However, it is a good opportunity to meet face-to-face and aslo ask the EuRoC team any questions you have.
What benefits does the end user gain from participating?
He can solve a real industrial problem that is specific for his company; he can let work for him among the best research labs in Europe without paying them (they will be financed by the EC); he will have a reimbursement of 50% or 75% of the own internal expenses; Hhe will have the joint ownership of the solution (together with the other team members) and can make a suitable agreement on its exploitation; Tthe application procedure is very simple and will not take much time (just general data, contact person and short use case description, while researchers worked 4 months to qualify); Oon the Brokerage Workshop (16+17 dec. London Gatwick) he can go to a well prepared market to find the most suitable partners; the probability of success is very high since 15 proposals out of max. 45 will be financed.
What is the role of the end-user in the second stage?
The end-user role is crucial to properly design the end-user driven task. Of course, its active participation will be more significant in the third stage.
Does the end user have to write lengthy reports for the EU? What kind of reports does the challenger team (challenger, system integrator, end user) have to deliver, and when?
There are no lengthy reports to be written in EuRoC. It's not a classical research project where the results can be measured in a number of pages. It's a use case driven challenge in which the main measure of success will be the solution. There are no special reports only for the end user. The team has two provide the project proposal (15 pages before 9 February 2015) and a detailed report on the activities at the end of stage II (October 2016). Of course the end user should help in describing the use case , deliver the requirements and so on.
In how many EU meetings does the end user have to be present?
Except for the Brokerage Workshop in London 16+17 December 2014, important dates are the midterm evaluation with public competition at Automatica 2016 and a challenge workshop at the end of stage II (October 2016). In stage III there will be a showcase on the end user's site and a demonstration to the public in September 2017 and, of course, the final event to celebrate the EuRoC winner. For the internal EuRoC meetings we expect only the Challenge Team Leader to be present.
If the end user does not want to claim personnel costs from the EU, will he need to perform all these financial reports, audits and other stuff connected with a usual EU proposal?
He will have to undergo the legal validation, i.e. he has to prove that he is an European Legal Entity. Without cost claims no other financial reports and audits are required.
What rights does the end user gain by its participation in this EuRoC competition?
According to the EuRoC Grant Agreement the ownership of the knowledge created under the project will be of the beneficiary that carried out the work that generated it. In the case of the challenger teams this means a joint ownership of the solution and in the proposal we expect indications on how you think to exploit it. Not all partners necessarily have to be involved in the exploitation. In general, it's EU policy that beneficiaries should use the new knowledge and they are invited to protect it, for instance by patenting. The only obligation vs. EU is that teh end user has to mention that the solution was created with the financial help of the EU.
How much time will be involved by the end user in stage 2 of EuRoC, apart from giving the application for the scenario, and access to facilities of the end user?
In general, the division of labor and budget is completely up to the team to determine. Having said this, it's our feeling that the commitment of the end user will be more important in stage III where the Field tests will take place at the end user's site. In stage IIa (Benchmarking and Freestyle) major tasks will be executed by research and technical partners. In stage IIb (5 months) he will be more involved. 6 PM for only stage II could be quite high (but this is just an opinion, not a recommendation).
How many end-users will be selected in the call for end-users?
There is no limit.
Is it possible for a team to exhibit more than one end-user?
I have no idea about robotics. Can I still participate?
Yes. As an end-user you are not required to have robotic expertise. Your role is to provide a use case. It would be the task of the challengers and invited technology developers/system-integrators to solve the use case. As an end-user you will be expected to provide support regarding specifications, sample parts, as well as feedback regarding the solution iterations.
Can I submit more than one use case?
Yes, you will need to register new using a different username for every use case. However, we recommend that you concentrate your efforts on 1-2 use cases.
Why does my use case submission have to undergo a review by the EuRoC Consortium?
This is just to make sure that your use case description contains all relevant information. Also, we would like to make sure that there aren’t already commercial solutions available for your use case.
Will my use case be automatically picked for the challenge, I submitted it to?
No, the challengers - or to be more precise the simulation stage winners – pick the use case they want to solve.
My use case fits more than one challenge scenario. Can I submit it to multiple challenges?
Yes. However, we ask you to use a different submission for each challenge. This way you can tailor the use case description to the characteristics of the specific challenge.
Do I have to work with the challenger that has picked my use case?
Participation is at your discretion. If you do not want to work with the team that has picked your use case, you are free to refuse joining their team.
What happens if several challengers pick my use case? Can I participate in 2 teams?
If they have picked the same use case, you will have to pick one of the challenger teams. If they have picked two different use cases that you submitted, it is up to you whether you have the capacity to participate in two challenger teams or not.
I am an end-user but I know a lot about robotics. Can I participate as a challenger?
Yes, you can by registering as a challenger (under a different username). However, if you want to pick an internal use case – in case you are one of the winners of the simulation stage; you still have got to submit a use case description.
Who has access to my use case description? Can I limit the access?
Yes. When submitting your use case description, you will have 3 publishing modalities from which to choose from:
Public: Your use case will be published on the EuRoC Web site and every one can see it. The advantages of this option is, that even if your use case is not picked by one of the simulation stage winners, some of the other challengers might want to collaborate with you on solving it or might even already have a solution in place.
Hidden: Only your contact information will be published on the website, as a participating end-user. The use case description will be shown only to the 45 simulation stage winners. The advantages of this option is, that the community will know that you have a challenging use case and might contact you in another research context.
Confidential: Nothing will be published on the website. The use case description will be shown only to the 45 simulation stage winners.
Note: If you chose the latter two options (Confidential / Hidden), you will be sent a list of the 45 winners in advance and will be given the opportunity to object to showing the description of your use case to individual winners. This way, you can make sure that a competitor with enough robotic expertise to participate and win as a simulation challenger does not get access to your use case description.
Can I submit more than one technology?
Yes. However, we recommend that you limit yourself to 1-2 technology description and focus on truly innovative and high-potential technologies.
Do I have to work with the challenger that has picked my technology?
Participation is solely at your discretion. If you do not want to work with the team that has picked your technology due to a conflict of interest, etc., you can refuse.
What happens if several challengers pick my technology? Can I participate in 2 teams?
If they have picked the same technology, you will have to pick one of the challengers. If they have picked 2 different technologies that you submitted, it is up to you whether you want to participate in 2 teams or not.
I am a technology developer but I know a lot about robotics. Can I participate as a challenger?
Yes, you can. It is up to you whether you want to additionally submit a description of your technology, as a back-up in case you do not win.
Who has access to my technology description? Can I limit the access?
Yes. When submitting your technology description, you will have 3 publishing modalities from which to choose from:
Public: Your technology description will be published on the EuRoC Web site and every one can see it. (The advantage of this option is free publicity among the robotics/automation community. Even if your technology is not picked by one of the simulation stage winners, some of the other challengers might want to collaborate with you in another context/ or would like to use your technology for another application they have in mind.)
Hidden: Only your contact information will be published on the website, as a participating technology developer. The technology description will be shown only to the 45 simulation stage winners. The advantage of this option is that the community will know that you have an innovative technology and might contact you in another context.
Confidential: Nothing will be published on the website. The technology description will be shown only to the 45 simulation stage winners.
Note: If you chose the latter two options (Confidential / Hidden), you will be sent a list of the 45 winners in advance and will be given the opportunity to object to showing the description of your technology to individual winners. This way, you can make sure that a competitor with enough robotic expertise to participate and win as a simulation challenger does not get access to your technology description.
How difficult is the simulation contest? How much effort will I have to invest?
The simulation contest was designed in a way such that it can be tackled by talented (teams of) Ph.D. students within the 4 months time frame. However, keep in mind that the performance of your solution is competing with the performance of other challenger teams.
Is it possible to form a team consisting of different organizations to compete in the simulation contest?
Yes. The affiliation of the team members should be included in the application form.
ICT Innovation for Manufacturing SMEs