Article 185 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) [ex Article 169 of the Treaty establishing the European Community (TEC)] enables the EU to participate in research programmes undertaken jointly by several Member States, including participation in the structures created for the execution of national programmes.
The actions supported may cover subjects not directly linked to the ten themes of the FP7 'Cooperation' Specific Programme, in as far as they have a sufficient EU added value. They will also be used to enhance the complementarity and synergy between FP7 and activities carried out under intergovernmental structures such as EUREKA and COST.
Article 185 TFEU (ex Article 169 TEC) states that:
"In implementing the multiannual framework programme, the Union may make provision, in agreement with the Member States concerned, for participation in research and development programmes undertaken by several Member States, including participation in the structures created for the execution of those programmes."
In practical terms, Article 185 TFEU foresees the participation of the EU in the joint implementation of (parts of) research and development national programmes.
Implementing Article 185 TFEU in the Seventh Framework Programme implies that the participating EU Member States integrate their research efforts by defining and committing themselves to a joint research programme, in which the EU promotes the voluntary integration of scientific, managerial and financial aspects. The EU provides financial support to the joint implementation of the (parts of the) national research programmes involved, based on a joint programme and the setting-up of a dedicated implementation structure.
Is there a life before an Article 185 TFEU (ex Article 169 TEC) initiative?
Article 185 TFEU (ex Article 169 TEC) initiatives build on the ERA-NET scheme, which aims to develop and strengthen the coordination of national and regional research programmes through two specific actions, 'ERA-NET actions' and 'ERA-NET Plus actions'. This scheme facilitates the possibility for national programmes to test their capacity to integrate further, in some cases up to the stage where an Article 185 TFEU initiative could be contemplated.
Identification criteria for Article 185 TFEU (ex Article 169 TEC) Initiatives
The identification criteria for Article 185 TFEU (ex Article 169 TEC), set out in the Seventh Framework Programme, are as follows:
Four initiatives identified in the FP7 Specific Programmes
In the Specific Programmes of the Framework Programme, four potential initiatives under Article 185 TFEU (ex Article 169 TEC) are identified on the basis of the criteria set out in the Seventh Framework Programme.
Three of these are under the Cooperation programme of the Seventh Framework Programme:
One is under the Capacities programme:
The Commission approach
In identifying and preparing proposals for Article 185 TFEU (ex Article 169 TEC) initiatives, the Commission has drawn on lessons learnt from the "European and Developing Countries Clinical trials Partnership" (EDCTP) initiative, the Article 185 TFEU initiative established under the Sixth Framework Programme. These are, notably, the necessity for:
Article 185 TFEU (ex Article 169 TEC) initiatives in practice
The recipient of the EU funding in each Article 185 TFEU (ex Article 169 TEC) initiative is a Dedicated Implementation Structure (DIS). The DIS is responsible for the administrative, financial and contractual management of the joint research programme.
The rules for participation are those of the national programmes concerned, provided they are compatible with EU legislation, plus any additional requirements which may be imposed by the Delegation Agreement.
More information: http://cordis.europa.eu/fp7/art185/home_en.html
Hungary takes part in two programs under the Article 185 TFEU.
The objective of the Ambient Assisted Living Joint Programme (AAL JP) is to enhance the quality of life of older people and strengthen the industrial base in Europe through the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT).
The motivation of the new funding activity is in the demographic change and ageing in Europe, which implies not only challenges but also opportunities for the citizens, the social and healthcare systems as well as industry and the European market. Main activity under the AAL Joint Programme is the funding of R&D projects in the AAL domain that result from regularly published calls for proposals.
The AAL JP is initially set up for a duration from 2008 to 2013. The programme´s planned total budget is 700 M€, of which approx. 50% is public funding - from the AAL Partner States and the European Commission - and approx. 50% is private funding from participating private organisations (e.g. enterprises).
Eurostars Programme is a European Joint Programme dedicated to the R&D performing SMEs, and co-funded by the European Communities and 33 EUREKA member countries.
Eurostars aims to stimulate these SMEs to lead international collaborative research and innovation projects by easing access to support and funding. It is fine-tuned to focus on the needs of SMEs, and specifically targets the development of new products, processes and services and the access to transnational and international markets.
Through this joint Programme, based on Article 185 of the Lisbon Treaty, Eurostars aims to combine the best of two worlds with a bottom-up approach, a central submission and evaluation process, and synchronized national funding in 33 countries.