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Expert Evaluators - Background & How to become an evaluator

Who are those people that evaluate the proposals? What background do they have? What instructions do they get? And how can you become an evaluator yourself?

Programmes Horizon Europe   HorizonEU L+F  

Published on | 1 year ago

Last updated on | 5 months ago

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Sarah Stroobants

Expert evaluators' role

The European Union Institutions appoint external experts to assist in the evaluation of grant applications, projects and tenders, and to provide opinions and advice in specific cases.

In particular, experts assist in:

  • Evaluation of proposals, prize applications and tenders
  • Monitoring of actions, grant agreements, public procurement contracts

In addition, experts also can provide advice on the preparation, implementation and evaluation of EU programmes and design of policies.

Become an expert evaluator

As the evaluators are regularly rotated, the Commission is always looking for new candidates to join the 'pool of experts'. With respect to evaluations in particular, for each call, at least 25% of experts included in the 'pool' should be newcomers. Think you've got relevant skills? Find out below how to get started. 


The Commission is looking for professionals in various fields and with varied skillsets to help evaluate EU research and innovation projects. The evaluation panels are composed of experts with diverse backgrounds and from various sectors:

  • Universities / higher education institutions and research organisations
  • Industry, business associations and innovation agencies
  • Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and other civil society organisations
  • Local, regional and national administration
  • International organisations

The Commission strives to achieve gender equality and strongly encourages female experts to register.

What is in it for me? 

- You gain insights into the evaluation process and criteria of Horizon Europe proposals, which will be useful when engaging in future projects proposals in Horizon Europe and other European funding programmes
- You gain insight into the state of the art in your field in a European context
- It is an opportunity to engage in European services that support recognition of your expertise at EU level


Find out more about what to expect as an expert evaluator in the open call for experts published by the Commission. This call for expression details the selection criteria, the required expertise, the description of the tasks, their duration and the conditions for remuneration. More information on practicalities can also be found in the model contract for experts.

Get started!

- Register in the Commission's expert database. The most suitable candidates are selected.
- List all relevant keywords that best describe your expertise (use the terminology of Horizon Europe calls).
- If selected you will be contracted from 2 days up to 2 weeks spread over several months.
- You will conduct the majority of your work remotely.

Can I still participate in Horizon Europe as a registered evaluator?

Expert evaluators are certainly allowed to submit Horizon Europe project proposals themselves. However, as an evaluator, you may not assess your own project proposals, nor project proposals from colleagues working for the same employer or project proposals within a call for which you have submitted yourself.

What instructions do expert evaluators get?

Besides some information on the background of the call topics, there is the standard briefing for experts (also attached to this infosheet). This presentation contains the following topics:

  • Evaluation procedure (including the evaluation criteria per type of action)
  • How to evaluate proposals (individual evaluation, how to deal with the criteria etc.)
  • Role of the independent experts (guiding principles, confidentiality, conflicts of interests)

Even if you're not considering to become an expert, it's still worthwhile to spend 15 to 30 minutes to go through these slides. It allows you to be up-to-date on the mindset with which your proposal will be evaluated.

Who are the expert evaluators?

The European Commission publishes anually (with some delay) the whole list of experts. The current list covers the period 2014-2018, and is divided into H2020 pillars, thematic areas and the country of evaluator's origin. You can browse this list here. There also exists a dashboard with statistics on experts (gender, sectors) where you can drill down per country.


For further information, we refer to the "work as an expert" page on the F&T portal and the dedicated page on the Commission's website.


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