MSCA Staff Exchange promote innovative international, inter-sectoral and interdisciplinary (i3) collaboration in research and innovation through exchanging staff and sharing knowledge and ideas at all stages of the innovation chain. The scheme fosters a shared culture of research and innovation that welcomes and rewards creativity and entrepreneurship and helps turn ideas into innovative products, services or processes. It is open to research, technical, administrative and managerial staff supporting R&I activities.
- Increase international, interdisciplinary and inter-sectoral mobility of research staff within Europe and beyond through collaborative research networks and activities;
- Strengthen the R&I human capital base in Europe and beyond;
- Increase Europe's attractiveness as a leading destination for R&I;
- Contribute to Europe's competitiveness and growth through high-quality R&I;
- Foster the culture of open science, innovation and entrepreneurship.
For staff members
- Increased set of research and transferable skills and competences, leading to improved employability and career prospects within and outside academia;
- More knowledge and innovative ideas converted into products, processes and services;
- More entrepreneurial mind-sets, testing new and innovative ideas;
- Increased international exposure leading to extended networks and opportunities;
- Enhanced networking and communication capacities with scientific peers, as well as with the general public that will increase and broaden the research and innovation impact.
For participating organisations
- Innovative ways of cooperation and transfer of knowledge between sectors and disciplines;
- Strengthened and broader international, interdisciplinary and inter-sectoral collaborative networks;
- Boosted R&I capacity.
MSCA Staff Exchanges involve organisations from the academic and non-academic sectors (including SMEs) from across the globe.
Support is provided for international, inter-sectoral and interdisciplinary mobility of R&I staff leading to knowledge transfer between participating organisations.
Mobility through secondments
The organisations constituting the partnership contribute directly to the implementation of a joint R&I project by seconding and/or hosting eligible staff members. Such a project must explore activities that can be based on previous work but should go beyond and generate or strengthen long-term collaborations. Secondments must always take place between legal entities independent from each other.
MSCA Staff Exchanges can address three dimensions of mobility: inter-sectoral, international and interdisciplinary. While exchanges between organisations within EU Member States and Horizon Europe Associated Countries should mainly be inter-sectoral, same-sector exchanges are also possible under the condition that they are interdisciplinary. Interdisciplinarity is not required for same-sector exchanges with non-associated Third Countries.
Secondments between institutions established in non-associated Third Countries or within the same EU Member State or Horizon Europe Associated Country are not eligible.
The collaborative approach of MSCA Staff Exchanges should exploit complementary competences of the participating organisations and create synergies between them. The secondments should be essential to achieve the joint project’s R&I activities. The project should inter alia enable networking activities and the organisation of workshops and conferences, to facilitate sharing of knowledge and testing of innovative approaches for specific R&I topics.
For participating staff members, the project should offer new skills acquisition and career development perspectives. Participating organisations must ensure that the seconded staff are adequately mentored.
Applicable unit contributions
The EU contribution for MSCA Staff Exchanges will take the form of unit contributions, as stipulated in Decision of 11 March 2021 authorising the use of lump sum contributions and unit contributions for Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions under the Horizon Europe Programme.
The following budget categories apply:
|MSCA Staff Exchanges|
Contributions for seconded staff members
per person -month
Special Needs Allowance (if applicable)
Research Training and Networking Contribution
|Management and Indirect Contribution|
|EUR 2.300||requested unit x (1/number of months)||EUR 1.300||EUR 1.000|
The top-up allowance for the seconded staff member contributes to travel, accommodation and subsistence costs related to the secondment.
The special needs allowance contributes to the additional costs for the acquisition of special needs items and services for staff members with disabilities, whose long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments94 are certified by a competent national authority, and of such nature that their participation in the action may not be possible without them (e.g. assistance by third persons, adaptation of work environment, additional travel/transportation costs). These special needs items or services must not have been funded from another source (e.g. social security or health insurance). The special needs allowance should be requested when the need arises.
The research, training and networking contribution should cover costs for training, transfer of knowledge and networking activities, as well as research expenses.
The management and indirect contribution should cover the beneficiary’s additional costs in connection with the action (e.g. personnel costs for project management/coordination, indirect costs).
Given the specific nature of MSCA Staff Exchanges, the following exceptions and additional eligibility criteria apply. This section also contains eligibility conditions, which apply during action implementation but cannot be verified at proposal stage.
For participating organisations
- Applications must be submitted by a consortium including at least three independent legal entities in three different countries, two of which established in a different EU Member State or Horizon Europe Associated Country.
- International organisations with headquarters in an EU Member State or Horizon Europe Associated Country will be deemed to be established in this Member State or Associated Country.
- The European Commission Joint Research Centre (JRC) may participate as member of the consortium selected for funding.
- Affiliated entities are not allowed to participate as they cannot claim costs in MSCA Staff Exchanges.
- Only legal entities that are established in EU Member States or Horizon Europe Associated Countries can be beneficiaries.
- If all participating organisations are from the same sector (i.e. either only academic or only non-academic), there must be at least one organisation from a non-associated Third Country. Above this minimum, the participation of organisations from any country is possible under the conditions provided by the Horizon Europe Rules for Participation and Dissemination.
- Secondments within EU Member States or Horizon Europe Associated Countries must be between different sectors (academic and non-academic), except for interdisciplinary secondments, which must be limited to a maximum of one third of the total months spent under the action.
- For secondments from associated partners linked to a beneficiary, only the sector (academic or non-academic) of the beneficiary counts; the linked associated partners will be considered to belong to the same sector as their beneficiary.
- Secondments must be between different countries; secondments between non-associated third countries are not eligible.
- Secondments must be performed on a full-time basis.
- Associated partners must include a letter of commitment in the proposal to ensure their active participation in the action. The involvement of any associated partner for which no such evidence of commitment is submitted will not be taken into account during evaluation.
For seconded staff members
- Secondments are open for researchers at any career stage (from doctoral candidates to postdoctoral researchers), as well as administrative, managerial and technical staff supporting R&I activities under the action.
- Supported staff members must be actively engaged in or linked to R&I activities for at least one month (full-time equivalent) at the sending institution before the first period of secondment.
- After the period of secondment, seconded staff should return to their sending institution, thus maximising the impact of the action for knowledge sharing and long-term collaboration.
For duration of the action
- The maximum duration of the project is 48 months from the starting date set out in the grant agreement.
- The overall EU contribution for MSCA Staff Exchanges amounts to a maximum of 360 person-months per project.
- Secondments must last at least one month and cannot be longer than 12 months for the same staff member (independently of the number of organisations the staff is seconded to).
- The secondment of a staff member may be split into several stays with one or several beneficiaries or associated partners.
- Secondments beyond the project duration cannot be funded.
- Proposals will be evaluated by experts on the basis of the award criteria 'excellence', 'impact' and 'quality and efficiency of the implementation'.
- Evaluation scores will be awarded for each of these criteria, and not for the different aspects listed in the table below. Each criterion will be scored out of 5. Scores will be awarded with a resolution of one decimal place and will be subject to a weighting factor as indicated in the table below.
- Proposals scoring equal to or above 70% will be considered for funding — within the limits of the available call budget. Other proposals will be rejected.
Quality and efficiency
Quality and pertinence of the project’s research and innovation objectives (and the extent to which they are ambitious, and go beyond the state of the art)
Developing new and lasting research collaborations, achieving transfer of knowledge between participating organisations and contributing to improving research and innovation potential at the European and global level
Quality and effectiveness of the work plan, assessment of risks, and appropriateness of the effort assigned to work packages
Soundness of the proposed methodology (including i3 approaches, consideration of the gender dimension and other diversity aspects, and the quality of open science practices)
Credibility of the measures to enhance the career perspectives of staff members and contribution to their skills development
Quality, capacity and role of each participant, including hosting arrangements and extent to which the consortium as a whole brings together the necessary expertise
Quality of the proposed interaction between the participating organisations in light of the research and innovation objectives
Suitability and quality of the measures to maximise expected outcomes and impacts, as set out in the dissemination and exploitation plan, including communication activities
The magnitude and importance of the project’s contribution to the expected scientific, societal and economic impacts
- Proposals will be evaluated by one of eight 'main evaluation panels': Chemistry (CHE), Social Sciences and Humanities (SOC), Economic Sciences (ECO), Information Science and Engineering (ENG), Environment and Geosciences (ENV), Life Sciences (LIF), Mathematics (MAT), Physics (PHY). Each panel establishes a ranked list.
- The distribution of the indicative budget of the call will be proportional to the number of eligible proposals received in each panel. If the budget allocated to any panel exceeds the requirements of all proposals positively evaluated in that panel, the excess budget will be reallocated to the other panels based on the distribution as above. Equally, if the allocated funding to a panel is insufficient to fund the highest ranked proposal in that panel, the necessary budget will be transferred from the other panels based on the distribution as above, in order to ensure that the highest ranked proposal can be funded. In order to ensure budget optimisation and an equitable success rate across panels, the excess budget remaining after the initial allocation of funding to the proposals in the panels may be transferred between panels.
2023 Call Information
2023 SE Call was launched on 5 October 2023 and will be closed on 28 February 2024.
Dedicated budget for this call is 78.5 M Euros.
Submissions are made directly from Funding and Tenders Portal (FTOP) webpage.
You may find all relevant documents for submission here below.
Standart Application Form B1: This document is the baseline for applications. It is mandatory to use the updated version of the document. It cannot be longer than 30 pages (plus introduction) and must be uploaded to the system.
Form B2: This document involves other information needed for the application. This also must be uploaded to the system along with Form B1.
SE 2022 Handbook: This document involves detailed information about what and how to write under each topic and sub-topic in Standart Application Form. It is strongly recommended to read thoroughly before starting to prepare your submission. This document will be renewed for 2023 Call soon.
How to Submit Staff Exchanges 2022: This document is prepared by the NCPs to show the steps you will be taking through the application. You can find the new version of this document soon here.
You will see the FAQ section for the relevant call at the bottom of the FTOP submission webpage.
There is also a Partner Search section you may use to publish your partner search announcements or to look for the opportunities already published.
You may also use MSCA Matchmaking Platform to find partners for your MSCA projects.
Please do not hesitate to contact us for any queries via email@example.com .