DESCA Model Consortium Agreement

What is DESCA:
The signature of a Consortium Agreement between the partners of a research project is mandatory for most EU research projects. DESCA (Development of a Simplified Consortium Agreement) is a comprehensive Model Consortium Agreement for such projects. It was initiated by key stakeholders for the 7th EU Framework Programme in 2006, updated for Horizon 2020 in consultation with the stakeholder community and is now in the process of being adapted to Horizon Europe. DESCA offers a reliable frame of reference for project consortia and enjoys broad support within the community.  

The European Commission offers general guidance for the drafting of consortium agreements, but rightfully does not endorse a specific model consortium agreement. link

Who is behind DESCA:
The DESCA Core Group is composed of ANRT, EARTO, KoWi, LERU, VTT, ZENIT and coordinated by Fraunhofer and the Helmholtz Association.

The DESCA Consultation Group, which provides vital expertise for the development of DESCA, consists of around 80 experts from Academia, Research and Technology Organisations and Industry from all over Europe, as well as from other countries involved in the framework programmes, e.g. Israel and USA.

More on the organisations endorsing DESCA.

How to use DESCA:
DESCA aims to provide, as far as possible, a single text which balances the interests of all types of project participants. However, DESCA recognises that different projects will have different objectives and that the interests of the partners may also differ. DESCA tries to accommodate such differences. More

Get started: Current model for download
NOTE: DESCA is a model which needs to be adapted to the circumstances of the individual project. Especially in projects with lump sum funding you may wish to modify the text, notably regarding financial management and decision-making.

Download DESCA 2020 with further information on typical points of discussion in the elucidation notes in pdf format:  
 Download DESCA 2020 model CA version 1.2 (with elucidation notes)

Download DESCA 2020 in Word format:
 Download DESCA 2020 model CA version 1.2.4 (without elucidation notes)

The Archives
Information on earlier versions of DESCA and background information.

Feedback and Further Assistance

Publishing Notes