The 2011-12 Fp7 calls are now only days away and now is a good time for a quick overview of the Socioeconomic Sciences and Humanities theme, so that you don't feel too lost amidst the 68 page work programme.
SSH provides funding through two basic 'instruments' or funding schemes:
- Large Collaborative Projects, to answer 'grand challenges'. These are behemoths, and the EC expects consortia to be at least 7 members from 7 different countries, and the EC's contribution to be at least €5.5m;
- Small/Medium Collaborative Project/Support Actions, to answer specific 'topics'. Here, the scale is much less ambitious: the minimum number of partners is 3, and the EC contribution is at most €1m/€2.5m.
Both these types of funding fit within eight broad 'activities':
- Growth, Employment & Competitiveness
- Economic, Social & Environmental Objectives in Europe
- Major Trends in Society and Their Implications
- Europe and the World
- The Citizens in the European Union
- Socio-Economic & Scientific Indicators
- Foresight Activities
- Horizontal Activities
Now it may seem a little confusing as to how they all fit together, so I've done a grid (pdf) showing which challenge or topic fits under which activity. However, this is just an overview, a road map: to really understand what the EC is after for each of these you'll have to take a deep breath and jump into the Work Programme. This will give you the background, objectives and expected impact of each area. The latest version of the draft Work Programme is available via UKRO, though you need to be a subscriber (as Kent is) in order to access it.