New proposal in, and how we grow as a team

This is to inform everyone that we submitted a proposal – codenamed PARTENAIRE – to the last Horizon 2020 call, LC-SC3-CC-1-2018-2019-2020, “energy citizenship”.

The proposal is quite strong, I believe. But what I like most is that the RezNet worked very well as a team. The front line consisted of @marina at the helm, me as the main document editor and @amelia to map what we do onto the literature on STS (science and technology studies); but many others chipped in. @martin was a great help in navigating the ambiguities of the EC format – I am looking forward to reciprocating his help by helping with a proposal he wants to lead. @andreja provided important information, and procure some letters of support. @nadia and @matthias answered questions on, respectively, engagement and tech support.

All this happened in August. Other partners were struggling to keep their eyes on the ball – mostly one lonely person per partner, with some holiday issues. I think we came across as very professional – we even delivered the proposal 24 hours ahead of the deadline, at some cost to ourselves.

I want to thank you all for your loyalty and generosity. I felt very supported throughout, and it is great to see the RezNet coming together as a unit. A special mention goes to Marina, who sailed through a potentially stressful situation with Slavic imperturbability (“Is not a problem”). She has really grown into the role. Now, however, I am very tired, and will be claiming some down time :slight_smile:


Thank you @alberto!

It has been tough but an exemplary way on how to work as a team. If we are to have important roles in these projects and (most importantly) be able to budget right for what we offer, it can never be a one-man show, so thanks to everyone from my side as well.

I would also mention here that another proposal is being submitted for this deadline: TREASURE - leading the TRansition of the European Automotive SUpply chain towards a circulaR futurE (that I mentioned briefly here after the first stage submission: Summary of submitted proposals and next steps for the RezNet). We have a much smaller role there and weren’t involved that much in the overall writing process.

There is always space to improve some processes, so adding that as an objective for the upcoming months.


Thank you & congratulation @alberto, @marina & team! I am happy that I could help a little to return a bit to edgeryders. Indeed, it looks like a sign of quality (at least for the organisation) to deliver the proposal before the deadline. I never saw a correlation between ‘success in application’ and delivery-time ‘before deadline’. However, I guess there is a sweet optimal slot [*]. Best regards, Martin

[*] Using my ‘two thirds’ rule of thump & having 90 days to make the proposal, I would allocate 60+20+7+2 = 89 days. Have fun! :face_with_monocle:


7 posts were split to a new topic: Creating tools for impactful discourse

Following up on this topic, I wanted to share with everyone who was involved somehow in the writing process - the PARTENAIRE proposal was unfortunately rejected. You can find the letter here.

We are disappointed as we really believed in its good quality. We also don’t fully agree with some comments, one is factually incorrect stating The methodology does not credibly define how the participants in the online conversation will be identified and recruited or how many participants are envisaged.

We have precisely mentioned numbers and the procedures in the proposal…
We consulted with the coordinator trying to see if there is a way to ask for re-evaluation, but it seems it’s a complicated process and we wouldn’t achieve much.

Anyways, we are taking this as a learning experience…it does however feel like we are investing too much of our time and not getting results.

@martin can you please share your thoughts with us? How could we become better in this?


Hello @marina - I asked for access to the rejection letter. Hence, here my comments on matters that do not need knowing the letter:

(1) Indeed asking for re-evaluation does make sense only if a major distortion of the evaluation process is detected. In the given circumstance, it seems useful to know whether the coordinator (in hind-cast) shares the perception that the ’ * methodology does not credibly define how the participants in the online conversation will be identified and recruited or how many participants are envisaged.*’ or whether s/he recognises that the information about methodology was not placed with appropriate visibility in the proposal.

(2) With noticeable difference to the situation 30 years ago, today EU services have very limited say in the findings of the evaluation of a given proposal. EU Member states did insist to trust their nationals that work as experts, and did dislike EU services having influence in the evaluation outcome of a given proposal. Hence, the essential bit in proposal writing is to get the information "out to the experts".

(3) Furthermore, what I wrote under (2) applies in most cases also for the relative ranking of the proposals. This implies, considering the variability of evaluation findings that the relative sequence of ‘good proposals’ has an element of randomness. Nevertheless, most very good and morst very bad proposals make it clearly into the top and bottom box, respectively. The relative ranking of a good proposal has little ‘qualifying power’.

(4) During the last decade, the share of high-quality proposals was such that “less than 50% could be funded”; that is, many high-quality proposals got rejected.

I know that my comments do not help with the disappointment. Also, saying that you have to write outstanding proposal to maximise your chances does not help. Likewise, considering proposal submission to be a lottery does not help.

So what to do, in future? Difficult to advise. However, I would be doubtful vis-a-vis a coordinator, who does not foresee ample time to review the final draft of the proposal before submitting it. Any process ‘with rush before the deadline’ is taking substantial risk to submit a proposal that (likely) will be rejected.

best regards,


I gave you the access now.

Thanks for the reflections Martin!

Thank You, @marina. I read the ESR. I guess, to learn you need an independent view on the methodology section done by a person that is unfamiliar with technology that you are using. I would expect that a (traditional) interviewer may perceive difficulties that you do not see ‘as such’. regards, Martin

p.s. I did not find the section describing the methodology
p.p.s. The weakness identified under the 3rd criteria, likely would have damaged the proposal.

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Good idea.