Finding partners

Wherever you look for advice on consortium building, the first suggestion is always to work with who you know, and then contacts of contacts. Entirely new consortia are funded less frequently as there is no track record of the partners working together successfully. Similarly, there is less guarantee of trust in their performance once the project is running.

Potential contacts/avenues for finding partners you might already have include:

  • colleagues from previous HEIs where you have worked
  • visiting academics
  • policy/industry contacts
  • partners from previous grants
  • Colleagues met at conferences
  • Institutional-level international networks

You may sometimes require a specific role that necessitates a partner search. Potential options for this are described below.

EU Portal Partner Search

The Partner search on the EU Funding & Tenders Portal is one of the largest databases of partner profiles (self-registered profiles).

This is probably best for finding a partner that fits a missing role in your consortium (testing, dissemination etc.). From experience, it is not particularly deep with quality institutions that have a track record of EU funding.


Crowdhelix is a pan-EU network of Universities and industrial partners. It is a subscription service and the majority of HEI partners are highly ranked in worldwide ranking systems and are active participants in EU funding. The platform is divided into ‘helices’ that match the Horizon Europe challenges. Each helix has proactive participants either searching for partners or projects to join.

We subscribe to Crowdhelix and are avtive within it. All University of Leeds researchers and support staff have access to the online innovation platform and can post here to garner interest from high-quality participants. There is a commitment to SME participation so it is particularly useful for rexcruiting SME partners.

Area and scheme-specific searches

Please note that this list will be updated as Horizon Europe becomes moire established.

Security (Societal Challenges Cluster 3)

  • SEREMA (Security Research Map) Database
    The SEREMA Security Research Database and partner profiles looking at Cluster 3: Civil security for society. The database has been developed within the network of National Contact Points for Security in the 7th EU-Framework Programme (SEREN 2).

    Why register?

    – Call the attention of the network about your competencies
    – Promote your research ideas
    – Find partners for security research projectsAdvantages:
    – Stay informed on upcoming Horizon 2020 Calls
    – Meet a lot of potential co-operation partners through the website and database
    – Your profile will be promoted all over EuropeAdvantages:
    – Stay informed on upcoming Horizon 2020 Calls
    – Meet a lot of potential co-operation partners through the website and database
    – Your profile will be promoted all over Europe

Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI2)

  • IMI partner search
    This partner search tool is for anyone interested in participating in future IMI projects.
    The tool is meant to help you identify partners for the preparation of an Expression of Interest in response to an IMI Call for proposals. Sharing information about your expertise and topic(s) of interest will enable other potential applicants to contact you and invite you to join an applicant consortium.
    In addition, you can browse or search the list of contacts in order to find organisations that match your partnering needs.

SME Involvement

  • Enterprise Europe Network Cooperation Opportunities Database
    The Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) publishes an extensive number of innovation and technology profiles from international companies and research organisations to help identify suitable partners for bilateral business, innovation and technology cooperation.
    The database has the following types of profiles:
    – Research and technology offers to further develop an existing technology
    – Research and technology requests to complement a product in the development stages
    – R&D partner searches to participate in funded projects
    The EEN database is updated with new profiles on a weekly basis. All profiles are published anonymously. Express your interest in collaboration by filling in and sending the Expression of Interest form to your local EEN office, who will establish the contact. The database is also a simple way of following the development of technologies and trends in your area.
    EEN is a useful tool that has regional offices based across Europe and hold events regionally on a semi-regular basis. It is the most pro-active network and probably has the widest array of partners. EEN works closely with H2020 so is potentially a reliable source of relevant contacts.

Information days and brokerage events

Each theme within Horizon Europe hosts a selection of information days each year for various sub-topics. These typically comprise a morning of details about the call and an afternoon of networking with parties interested in these topics. This is sometimes informal, and other times structured around a 5-minute presentation followed by networking.

We send out alerts to these events as soon as we hear about them but be wary that places are filled very quickly.

Joining stakeholder groups that feed into Horizon Europe

A variety of policy and industrial stakeholder groups exist, many consulted by the European Commission on future priorities for their sector. Academic bodies are often welcome members and networking with organisations with influence can really enhance your chances of being part of a successful consortium.

Please contact the EU Team for more information.

Become an evaluator

Signing up as a Horizon Europe expert means that you may be picked to review proposals. As well as seeing what Horizon Europe proposals look like, you will also be exposed to a physical and virtual network of evaluators in your area of research (who are also potential applicants) across academia, industry and the third sector – more so if you are part of a panel ranking proposals.

Click on the link to register at as an expert on the EU Funding and Tenders Portal and set up a profile by clicking on the ‘My Expert Area’.

Social Media

There are LinkedIn groups for many Horizon Europe funding areas. Most social media outlets are a last resort for finding a partner, but the business focus of LinkedIn makes it a more legitimate option.