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How to write a work plan for Horizon Europe

Business people sat around table planning project.

Securing funding for your research project under Horizon Europe is a highly competitive endeavor. To stand out and increase your chances of success, you must craft a compelling work plan that aligns with the program's objectives and demonstrates your project's feasibility and impact.

Below, we cover the essential steps for creating a work plan for Horizon Europe, including grant writing, proposal development, review criteria, and research planning.

The importance of a well-structured work plan

A well-structured work plan is the backbone of your Horizon Europe proposal. It outlines the project's objectives, tasks, timeline, and resources required for successful execution. A clear and concise work plan not only showcases your project's scientific and technological excellence but also demonstrates your team's competence and commitment to delivering tangible results.

Grant writing for Horizon Europe

Before you start writing your work plan, thoroughly review the call for proposals. Pay close attention to the specific objectives, expected outcomes, and evaluation criteria outlined in the call text. This will provide you with valuable insights into what the evaluators are looking for. It is also essential to clearly define the scope of your project, including what problem or challenge will it address and what the expected impacts and outcomes will be. It is critical to ensure that your project's goals align with the thematic priorities of Horizon Europe.

Since most Horizon Europe projects involve collaboration with other organizations or research institutions, ensure that you carefully select your consortium partners. It is essential that each partner brings complementary expertise and resources to the table.

Proposal development and work plan

There are several areas of proposal development and work plan components that need to be properly addressed for Horizon Europe proposals.

First, it is necessary to organize your project into work packages (WPs). WPs are the building blocks of your work plan and should align with the project's objectives. Each WP should have a clear purpose, specific tasks, deliverables, and milestones. Within each WP, provide detailed descriptions of the tasks involved. Clearly state who will be responsible for each task, what resources are required, and the expected outcomes.

Developing a work plan requires specific and realistic timelines. Creating a timeline for your project using a Gantt chart or a similar visual tool is often helpful to achieve this, plus it helps evaluators and stakeholders understand the project's overall duration and the sequencing of tasks.

Lastly, it is important to specify the resources required for each task, including personnel, equipment, and budgetary needs. Ensure that your resource allocation is in line with the project's goals and objectives, and identify potential risks that could impact the successful implementation of your project. Mitigation strategies to address these risks and demonstrate your project's resilience is also advised for any solid work plan.

Review Criteria for Horizon Europe

It is crucial to understand the evaluation criteria used in Horizon Europe to write a work plan that impresses evaluators. The main evaluation criteria typically include:

1. Excellence

Evaluators assess the scientific and technological excellence of your project. Is your approach innovative? Does it address a significant challenge? Does it demonstrate a clear and ambitious vision?

2. Impact

What is the potential impact of your project? How will it contribute to addressing societal or economic challenges? Consider the long-term effects and potential for innovation and market uptake.

3. Implementation

Evaluators look at the feasibility and quality of your work plan. Is it well-structured? Are the tasks and milestones achievable? Does your consortium have the necessary expertise and resources?

Research Plan

A research plan is a critical component of your work plan. It outlines the scientific methodology, data collection and analysis, and expected research outputs. Key elements of a research plan include:

Research Objectives

Clearly state the research objectives and hypotheses that your project aims to address. What are the specific research questions you seek to answer?


Detail the research methodology, including experimental design, data collection methods, and data analysis techniques. Explain why these methods are suitable for your project.

Expected Outcomes

Describe the expected research outputs and their potential impact. How will your findings contribute to scientific knowledge or address societal challenges?

Ethical Considerations

Address any ethical considerations related to your research, such as data privacy, informed consent, and compliance with ethical guidelines.

How Linq Can Help with Writing a Work Plan for Horizon Europe Projects

Writing a comprehensive work plan for Horizon Europe can be a complex and time-consuming process. Linq Consulting specializes in all areas of creating and managing successful proposals and projects, including work plans, with dedicated project managers that have extensive experience with multi-million Euro collaborative research projects. Our team of expert researchers, writers, and project managers can help with all aspects of not only writing a successful grant proposal, but also carrying it through and implementing it for Horizon Europe projects.

Whether it is navigating the grant application landscape, managing the full proposal process, or simply helping with developing the work plan, we can help get your proposal ready for the final review. The dedicated experts at Linq Consulting are available to assist with anything related to Horizon Europe and all stages of the writing and application process.

For more information on how we can help, get in touch with us at

Be sure to follow us on Twitter/X @linq-consulting and connect with us on LinkedIn as well.

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