EU Regulation 2021/695 establishing Horizon Europe and all relevant regulating documents (HE Programme Guide, the EIC work programme, Annotated Grant Agreement) states that beneficiaries must promote the project and its results as well as ensure the visibility of EU funding. Therefore, communication and dissemination activities are an integral part of any EU-funded project. But what’s the difference between them? They are different but closely related. Let’s analyse the objective, focus, target audience and means for these activities.
Communication activities seek to reach society as a whole and show the impact and benefits of your research project by explaining how you contribute to address societal challenges.
Dissemination activities address the transfer of knowledge and results so that others can use the results, thus maximising the impact of EU-funded projects.
Communication activities are to inform about and promote the project and its results. In dissemination activities the focus is on results only. The most important is to describe and ensure results are available for others to use.
Communication activities are directed toward different types of target audience beyond the project’s own community, including media and the general public.
Dissemination targets audiences that may take an interest in the potential use of the results (e.g., scientific community, industrial partners, policymakers).
As communication addresses the public, the means include newsletters, press releases, project factsheets, brochures and social media. The terminology must be simple so that non-experts can understand the purpose of your project. Tell a story about your research project and use persuasive language.
As dissemination activities focus on industry experts, professional organisation and policy makers, the most common means include scientific publications, policy briefs, training/demonstration events and sharing results on online repositories (research date, software, reports). The language will be more technical and academic to be understood by specialists.
Not just an obligation but an opportunity
Communication and dissemination activities should not be seen as contractual obligations only. These activities will help you spread your knowledge, increase the visibility of your project/company and introduce you to other business opportunities.
Communication and dissemination activities are necessary steps that beneficiaries need to take to reach the foreseen impacts. It is highly recommended to have a communication and dissemination plan. If you need help to write the Communication Plan for your EIC project, you can read this article. For additional tips, you can consult How to improve your HE communication plan.
You may now be wondering if the costs related to the preparation of the communication and dissemination plan are eligible. What do you think? Feel free to contact us to discover more on this topic: firstname.lastname@example.org.