The European Commission has introduced a model grant agreement that is used for many European funding programs.
In the Grant Agreement (GA), the implementation of the research project is contractually regulated.
For multi-partner projects under Horizon 2020 and Horizon Europe, the conclusion of a Consortium Agreement is generally mandatory. This agreement regulates the rights and obligations of the project partners among themselves. The content is not controlled by the EU Commission. It is not a contracting party. The provisions of the Grant Agreement remain unaffected by the provisions of the Consortium Agreement.
The Consortium Agreement may regulate the following aspects:
- liability regulations
- intellectual property rules (including the background that each partner brings to the project; granting of access and/or use rights; transfer of rights)
- payment regulations
- obligations to participate in project meetings
- dealing with defaulting partners - appointment of scientific/technical/administrative responsible persons
- tasks and duties of a steering committee and/or advisory board
- decision-making processes including coordination modalities, forms of communication
- confidentiality rules
The European Commission has published a guide for the preparation of a consortium agreement: Guidance: How to Draw up Your Consortium Agreement
The DESCA Core Group has developed a Model Consortium Agreement for projects under Horizon 2020 which is currently updated for Horizon Europe.
Please contact the EU office responsible for you before concluding a consortium agreement. The local staff will support you in preparing the contract.
Article 49 of the Annotated Model Grant Agreements explains
- when contract changes become necessary
- how to proceed.
The general descriptions are illustrated by examples.