The journey from project idea to application can seem a little daunting, especially if you are a newcomer to Interreg North Sea funding. Try following these logical steps and you will find yourself on your way in a whiz!
Seven steps to success
The road to your final application can be broken down into seven main steps. Learn more about each step below.
Our top tip: Start early! Make sure to have enough time to build your partnership, develop your idea, participate in our applicant-focused events, and consult with our project advisors and National Contact Points as you go along.
We recommend you check our calls schedule, so you can be ready to engage when the next call opens.
It all starts with your idea. The first thing on your list is to check that it fits well within our thematic framework of four priorities.
You must apply under one of the specific objectives defined for each priority. Please take care to select the one that is the best match for your idea.
If you are in doubt about whether or where your idea fits in, do not hesitate to contact us and ask for support.
Cooperation across borders is the common hallmark of all our projects and the reason why so many of them produce strong results. Your project must involve partners from at least three North Sea Region countries. Depending on whether you are applying for a regular or a small-scale project, you also need to ensure your partnership is of the right size.
The strength of your partnership can make or break your application as well as your ultimate project success. To build a stellar team, you need to be selective. Each partner must be qualified and bring in complementary competencies to the team's joint pool of skills, knowledge and experience. Cross-sectoral teams - e.g. composed of public agencies, universities, and companies - are often able to produce strong results. However, the ideal composition of your partnership depends on your aims and the scope of your project.
Also, once your partners are on board, they can help develop your application further by adding new facets to your idea, based on their own expertise.
These are all good reasons why it pays off to focus on building a strong partnership as early as possible.
Before you can develop your application, you need to know if you aim for a regular project or a small-scale project.
For small-scale projects, you apply in a single step. The application form is also simpler than for regular projects.
For regular projects, we have put a two-step procedure in place allowing you to first submit a simple expression of interest. Once this is approved, you can more on to the more comprehensive full application in confidence, knowing that your idea stands a fair chance of approval. The two-step procedure takes more time to complete as it requires two rounds of approval by our Monitoring Committee.
Note: Two-step application for regular projects may or may not be mandatory, depending on the call. Also, each call may only allow one type of project - regular or small-scale. Please check out the conditions of the individual call to see which of the above options are available.
We recommend you to start working in the online application form together with your partners as early as possible. Working in the correct form and being aware of the character limits helps shape your application.
Our online monitoring system will typically open for applicants ahead of a call, so you can often start drafting your application even before the call is open for submissions.
Find guidance including tips on using the online system to apply
We regularly host events that are designed for applicants. This is a good chance to network and get on top of the process, ask questions and learn from others. To stay updated on upcoming events, check our upcoming events or subscribe to our newsletter.
We also highly recommend you to consult your idea with our project advisors as well as our National Contact Points. Please feel free to reach out to us at any point with any question or doubt you might have. We are there to help great project ideas come to fruition!
Please note: The Joint Secretariat can advise on content up until three weeks prior to the deadline of any call. After this point, our advisors can only support you on technical questions. However, you can still approach our National Contact Points with questions regarding content right until the deadline for submission.
Contact your National Contact Point
For small-scale and full applications, you need to designate an Authorised Signatory. Expressions of interest do not require this step.
IMPORTANT: Please make sure to start early enough on this part of the process. It can take some time! You cannot submit your application until the Authorised Signatory is in place. Applications received after the deadline will be disregarded.