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Home How to build a Project

How to build a project

On this page we provide help to prevent the most common mistakes we see in IraSME applications. The Project Check-Up is a short questionnaire that tries to lead you from a first idea to the submission of your application in IraSME. The scheme below gives you an overview on the stages from idea to proposal and provides you with further information if you follow the links.

Most Common Problems

The most common reason for projects beeing not eligible or not funded is a  lack of knowledge about rules and requirements of the national / regional funding programmes and a lack of time when it comes to preparing a complete and acceptable project plan and application.

The best measures to overcome those problems are:

  • Contact your national / regional funding organisations at an early stage of your plans.
  • Some of the local agencies offer to check a short overview on your project idea and to give you some non-binding feedback. This is generally possible up until four weeks before the call deadline – the earlier the better of course.
  • Take your time to plan your project and write an application! We offer two calls for proposals each year, so there is no need to rush it if your application is not quite ready yet.

If you still have questions, please contact us. You find the contact details at the bottom of each page

Stages of building a Project

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Do the Project Check-Up

With a couple of short questions we will try to lead you through all necessary steps necessary in building a successful IraSME project and writing proposals which fulfil all requirements.

Do the Project Check-Up (in progress)

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Not sure your idea fits into IraSME?

If you are not sure whether your project idea or your consortium fulfils the necessary national / regional funding criteria, we recommend you seek advice at an early stage of your planning.

Contact the IraSME coordination office (bottom of the page) for general questions and your local contact person for specific questions regarding eligibility of the idea or the consortium.

Some of the local agencies also offer the possibility to check a short overview on your planned project and give you some non-binding feedback before you submit the actual proposal.

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Building a consortium

Build your consortium as small as possible and as big as necessary.

For most countries / regions the minimum requirement for a project consortium is two companies from two participating countries / regions. If a partner from Austria is involved, the consortium has to include at least 3 companies (research organisations do not count as companies) of which at least one has to be a SME from Austria.

Research organisations are eligible as additional partners or as subcontractors depending on the rules of the corresponding country / region.

For further information visit the Countries /Regions page. We also offer help in finding partners for projects. Visit our next Partnering Event or see our Finding Partners page.

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Who is eligible?

The eligibility criteria for companies and research organisations differ between the participating countries / regions. Please refer to the programme profiles of each IraSME member country or region.

In most countries, companies are eligible if they comply with the SME definition of the EU: < 250 employees (full time equivalents) and < 50 Millon Euros annual turnover or < 43 Million Euros balance sheet.

However, there may be exceptions. For example, Germany allows companies < 500 employees (and < 1,000 employees when cooperating with a SME), while Russia only accepts companies < 100 employees.

Research organisations (universities, technical universities, Fraunhofer institutes, etc.) are sometimes eligible as partners receiving their own funding if at least one company from the same country is part of the consortium. In other programmes, e.g. in Russia, RTOs may only be eligible as subcontractors.

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National / Regional Applications

We recommend you start by filling in the national / regional applications first. Make yourself familiar with your country’s/region’s specific funding rules, before starting to plan the overall project budget and completing the IraSME proposal form.

The national / regional applications are the most important part of your application. IraSME does not represent a single funding programme with its own budget. Instead, it coordinates and synchronizes several different national / regional funding programmes. So each funding agency initially decides on their own if they can approve a project based on their national applications and rules.

The joint IraSME application form serves as an overview for the funding agencies involved. It is concise and may be prepared closer to the call deadline, once everything else is ready.

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You find all the necessary documents and information in the Current Call Section.

Please submit the joint IraSME application form (signed by all partners) and the draft cooperation agreement (not signed) by e-mail to info (at) before the call deadline.

The national applications have to be submitted at the same time according to the procedures of the corresponding agencies.

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Not enough Time?

Only a few weeks left until the deadline and you are far from finished with your application? Never mind!

We offer two regular calls for proposals each year with deadlines end of March and end of September. If you miss one deadline just take your time to prepare a good application and hand it in before the next deadline.

If you want to be sure your local agency participates in the next call, you should contact them directly.

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