Evaluation Criteria and Scoring System

Home / Application Process / Evaluation Criteria and Scoring System

Criteria/sub-criteria for the selection of researchers.

DIGI+ will use the three sub criteria for selection:
a. Excellence
b. Impact
c. Implementation


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).

Soundness of the proposed methodology (including interdisciplinary approaches, consideration of the gender dimension and diversity aspects, and the quality of proposed open science and data management practices.

Quality of the supervision, training plan and of the two-way transfer of knowledge between the researcher and the host.

Quality and appropriateness of the researcher’s professional experience, competences and skills.


Credibility of the measures to enhance the career perspectives and employability of the researcher and contribution to his/her skills development.

Suitability and quality of the measures to maximise expected outcomes and impacts, as set out in the dissemination and exploitation plan, including communication activities.

Feasibility and quality of the measures to sustain and scale research, as set out in the funding plan and related activities.

Alignment of the proposed research to support the EU Sustainabllity goals, Digital Europe Programme, Regional Development and Policy making.

Quality and efficiency of the implementation

Quality and effectiveness of the work plan, training and funding plan, assessment of risks and appropriateness of the effort assigned to work packages.

Quality and capacity of the proposed host institution and participating organisations, including hosting arrangements, IP arrangements and secondment objectives.

Quality and Alignment of personal career development goals and plan with the proposed research, funding, exploitation and training plan.

 For the international peer review process (Stage 2.2)  a remote consensus meeting will be held between the 3 reviewers to agree the final application score (consensus) based on the individual evaluation criteria.


Scoring System:

  • The evaluation is on a 5-point scale; 0 (very poor) to 5 (excellent) for each of the 3-evaluation criterion
  • The scores will be in single decimal place together with indicative scores of the 3 sub-criteria
  • Weightings will be applied to the scores awarded.
  • In cases where proposals have exactly the same score, they will be ordered on the ranked lists following the priority.


Score Description

0: Very Poor. Proposal fails to address the criterion or cannot be assessed due to missing data. 
1: Poor: The criterion is inadequately addressed, or there are fundamental weaknesses.
2: Fair: Proposal broadly addresses the criterion, but there are significant gaps.
3: Good: Proposal addresses the criterion well, but a number of flaws are present.
4: Very Good: Proposal addresses well the criterion, but a small number of flaws are present.
5: Excellent: Proposal addresses all relevant aspects of criterion, and any shortcomings are minor.


DIGI+ priority weightings

  • The evaluation criteria are weighted differently, and the set of weightings shown below will be applied to the scores provided for each of the criterion
  • The priority outlined below will be used to rank applications that achieve exactly the same score
  • If the priority in the case of ex aequo measure does not resolve the situation, then all concerned proposals will go through to the next selection stage. There will be no thresholds per individual evaluation criterion.



Weighting: 50%
Priority: 1


Weighting: 30%
Priority: 2


Weighting: 20%
Priority: 3


Final Evaluation Mark:

  • The final mark for the applicant will be composed equally from the peer review of the written proposal (50%) and the interview (50%) (with priority in case of ex aequo)
  • The final score will be between 0 (min) and 10 (max) with an inbuilt overall threshold of 7 (70%)
  • Highest scoring candidates above the threshold will be included in a ranked list of 10 candidates per call for funding approval by the DIGI+ SC, plus up to 10 remaining applicants scoring above threshold laced on a reserve list.



  • There will be no thresholds per individual evaluation criterion. However, an overall threshold of 70% is applicable to the final weighted scores produced at the end of the international peer review and interview stages
  • Only applications, with an international peer review final weighted score equal to or higher than 3.5, will proceed to the interview stage
  • At the end of the interview stage, the final weighted score from the international peer review and interview stages will be added – with equal weighting – producing a combined final weighted score (i.e. this will be the final mark for that application)
  • Only applications with a combined final weighted score equal to or higher than 7.0 will be considered for funding. This will apply regardless of the number of applications received.


Career Breaks:

Remote reviewers and interview panel members consider any career breaks from research a candidate may have taken, particularly when considering the candidate’s publication record (particularly relevant for applicants returning to research following a career break and researcher at risk applicants).


Equality in Recruitment and Equal Opportunities and Diversity policies

All DIGI+ academic hosts have Equality in Recruitment and Equal Opportunities and Diversity policies in place and are committed to the continued development of employment policies, procedures and practices which do not discriminate on grounds such as gender, civil status, family status, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, race, membership of travelling community.

All DIGI+ academic hosts have endorsed the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers.