Friday, 18 November 2011

My top 5 places to find FP7 projects that need partners

Ken Gordon
Part of the service provided by The Enterprise Europe Network is in supporting organisations that want to take part in EU collaborative R&D, particularly FP7 and Eurostars. 

For organisations wanting to engage for the first time, the search can be daunting. In this post Ken Gordon gives you his 5 top tips in finding projects that need partners.


I am often asked by Scottish organisations who want to join an FP7 project as a partner,
“What place can I look to find projects that are looking for partners?”
My largely unhelpful answer is that there is no single place to look, but the good new is that most of the places you will find such projects, are free and easy to use. 

Here are my top 5 places to find FP7 projects that need partners (in no particular order).

1. The first suggestion is easy. The Enterprise Europe Network manages the world’s largest business partnering system and among the many commercial opportunities, there are FP7 and Eurostars projects looking for partners. Register on our website and you will automatically get email notification of projects looking for partners.

2. Engage in the UK FP7 community by joining the UK home of FP7, the Connect site. It is free and easy to join and it is managed by the UK FP7 National Contact Point Network, the people in the UK who know most about each FP7 theme. While you are in there, look out for the FP7 thematic partner search tools. This link gives you a list of some of them.

3. Register (if you haven’t already) as a potential FP7 project partner on the CORDIS website . It is long established, and still a "go to” Site for project partners. Also register on the new Research Participant Portal site for all you need to know about FP7 calls.

4. Are you a member of a local or national technology network? Use that to raise your profile and make connections. Someone in your network might be preparing an FP7 project. LinkedIn contains many FP7 Groups to join and a request placed in a relevant LinkedIn group can work.

5. Attend info days about FP7. In Scotland alongside Scotland Europa, we host around 10 of these a year. If you can go to the FP7 information days in Brussels, there is always a chance to network and often formalised FP7 project partner brokerage activities.

To sum up, successfully finding projects that need partners is largely about networking and making people aware of your organisation and what it does. I hope the above short list is helpful. 

Remember the Enterprise Europe Network is here to help you so don’t hesitate to get in touch if you are thinking seriously of joining FP7, Eurostars or other Funding programmes.

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