How can I improve my writing? What is the EU looking for when receiving proposals? How can I stand out from the crowd?

Back in University, we came up with an efficient system of getting better grades. The trick was not only to study the content, but also to study the lecturer, and understand exactly what type of material he or she was looking for. Some awarded points for opinionated articles, while others were drawn in by numbers, figures, and facts. Once we figured out their point grading system, we could give them what they wanted — and they in turn, gave us the grades that we wanted. This is the same for EU Proposals. 

The rate of success of ideas depends on understanding how evaluators read and assess proposals. So who exactly is the evaluator? Evaluators tend to be experts with a solid background in their respective funding programmes — normally, half of these work in academia, while the other half work in private companies, or public and private organisations. Evaluators are asked to assess around 10-12 proposals for each call within short deadlines, and they normally have around 2-4 hours to get through each one. Therefore writing in the correct form is one of the utmost important things to consider when writing proposals. Some things to pay particular attention to are:

  1. Is the idea written clearly, and the text schematised into bullet points and lists? 
  2. Are you paying attention to first impressions?
  3. Are you able to get to the point of your subject without being vague, or using long introductions?
  4. Are you providing details and quantification, and citing sources when providing data to introduce context and background? 
  5. Are you identifying key points, rephrasing them, and repeating them consistently in order to make sure your message comes across?
  6. Do you ask for feedback from third parties to see if the proposal is easy to navigate and understand?

AcrossLimits has 20 years of experience working within Europe and European Opportunities, and therefore knows the importance of a great proposal. You do not need to reinvent the wheel, but simply communicate your idea effectively. If you would like any more information on how to write the right proposal, you may contact AcrossLimits on [email protected]

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