EU lingo – a language that the target group does not understand

For those of us who work with EU projects, it feels quite natural, after a while, to talk in terms of milestones, work packages and deliverables. For those who really will benefit from the results of the projects – the market – this is all Greek."I am a work package leader in the projects IRIS and United-Grid. In addition, I am responsible for certain specific tasks, milestones and deliverables," Ulrika Wahlström, Innovation Project Manager at IMCG says and laughs, well aware that this is gibberish for ordinary people.   

It is not a bad idea to have a solid background in strategic communication when you are an innovation project manager and work with EU projects. You then realise that most people do not understand anything at all of the above. Find below, the first part of the information explaining the terms.

Find out how project proposal, call, consortium, project co-ordinator, work package, work package leader, tasks, task leader, person-months etc. hang together!

Some of the key words in EU projects

A typical EU project is gathered in a consortium, and this consists of various b. The partners are usually cities, government agencies, universities, institutes, SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) and industries from several different countries. They have joined together to write a project proposal that answers a call published by the EU Commission. The project is controlled by a project coordinator who is responsible for ensuring that the project results, delivered by work package leaders, are reported to the EU Commission at the rate promised in the project proposal.

The project is structured into various modules – work packages (WP). Here, the partners are assigned roles in the work packages where they have the most expertise. The work packages are managed by work package leaders (WP leaders). They are responsible for ensuring the work package activities comply with the specified deadlines. Each work package is then broken down into various tasks, and each of these has a task leader responsible for things being carried out in each task. It is also frequently said that there are sub-tasks in each task. The WP leader can also be a task leader for a number of tasks. Each work package and task have a specified time during which they should be active. Each partner's efforts are counted in person-months (PM).

"As a work package leader, I am responsible for making sure we deliver on time.  I ensure that all of the partners who are involved in our work package are always trying to benefit the market. I am also task leader for quite a few tasks and, more often than not,  author of the reports to be sent to the EU Commission," Ulrika Wahlström says.

IMCG builds consortia, writes winning EU proposals and often leads work packages in areas such as Exploitation, Business models, IPR and Strategic communication.

You have just read an Insights story by IMCG International. As of 1.1.2023, IMCG is part of Spinverse.