Find definitions for the technical terms most commonly used at Interreg NWE.



A specific task performed as part of a project work package and resulting in a deliverable or an output. Up to 4 activities may be chosen per work package.


An organisation applying for funding from the Interreg NWE Programme.

Application Form (AF)

A binding document and annex to the Subsidy Contract.

It describes the project and gives detailed information on the work plan and budget. The AF is submitted in two steps during calls for proposals and is assessed by the Programme bodies which select the projects to be funded. 

Assimilated project partner

A project partner from outside the NWE area.

Associated project partner (observer)

Partners who do not financially contribute to the project but who have an interest in its results. They act as observers.


The counterpart to Interreg NWE's co-financing, secured by the partners.

Partners pay it from their own resources or received it from non-EU external sources. Depending on the source of contribution (partner’s own resources, external sources) and their legal status, the contribution can be public and/or private. 



Reference level against which the project is monitored and controlled (starting point).

(Total) budget

The total budget of a project established based on the costs planned by all project partners in the Application Form.

(Total eligible) budget

Total eligible budget indicates the total budget of a project subject to programme co-financing. In the Application Form, it is calculated based on the total budget, excluding the potential net revenue of the project.


Call for proposals

An announcement by the Programme for new project proposals to be submitted.

There will usually be two calls each year. Each call for proposals has its own dedicated terms of reference. 

(Programme) Co-financing

The financial support provided by Interreg NWE to the project.

This includes support from the ERDF fund and from ERDF equivalent funds (Swiss co-financing). 

(Programme) Co-financing rate

Percentage of the total eligible expenditure of the project paid by Interreg NWE.

This rate applies to the eligible expenditure of the project and to each individual partner. 

Cooperation Programme

It sets out the aims, objectives and types of actions to be supported by Interreg NWE.

Cross-sectoral relevance

Relating to or affecting more than one group, area, or sector.

Projects are expected to involve the key stakeholders from the field in question in their project activities. 



A project side-product or service that contributes to the development of its main outputs.

Deliverables are an "in-between step", which will eventually feed into a main output of the project (such as workshops/events, feasibility studies, mid-term reports, etc.). Deliverables result from the activities. Up to 3 deliverables per activity may be identified.


A loss in value of an asset over time.

Direct costs

Costs that can be attributed directly to the project.

They relate directly to an individual activity undertaken by the partner organisation where the link with this individual activity can be demonstrated (for instance, through direct time registration). 


Eligibility criteria

A list of criteria to which a project must comply in order to be declared eligible for funding.

Electronic Monitoring System (eMS)

The entry point for the electronic preparation, submission and administration (progress reports, change requests etc.) of an NWE Interreg project.

Equivalent probative value

Invoices and other documents equivalent to invoices used as supporting evidence for expenditure incurred by project partners.

Accounting documents of equivalent probative value must be provided by project partners in the case of expenditure for which there is no invoice available. 

(Project) Evaluation

The systematic and objective assessment of an ongoing or completed project, programme or policy, its design, implementation and results.

The aim is to determine the relevance and degree of fulfillment of objectives, project development, efficiency, effectiveness, impact and durability. 

External coherence

Coherence with other European and other policy contexts. Projects building on the results of other European projects and programmes are welcome.

Projects should refer to activities under these programmes, provide an explanation of synergies. They must ensure there is no duplication of existing or previous projects carried out under other EU or other programmes.


Flat rate

Specific categories of eligible costs that are clearly identified in advance by the Programme and are calculated by applying a fixed percentage to one or several other categories of eligible costs.

Flat rates involve approximations of costs and are determined on the basis of fair, equitable and verifiable calculation methods, or they are established by the Fund specific regulations.


Horizontal principles

As mentioned in Articles 7 and 8 of REGULATION (EU) No 1303/2013, are core principles that cut across and have relevance to all areas of the work of EU funded projects. Projects need to refer to them in their Application Form.

There are 3 horizontal principles: sustainable development, equal opportunities and non-discrimination, and equality between men and women.


Indirect costs

Indirect costs cannot be assigned to the project in full, as they are linked to various activities of the partner organisation.

As such costs cannot be connected directly to an individual activity (for instance, telephone, water, electricity expenses, etc.) it is difficult to determine precisely the amount attributable to this activity.


For NWE, Innovation means “something original, new, and important - in whatever field - that breaks into (or obtains a foothold in) a market or society” and predominately focuses on ‘test’ or ‘development’ phases.

The Programme will focus on applied innovation and cooperation projects that develop a specific product, service or process to increase its level of market-readiness. Activities focus mostly on the concept/technology validation phase of the innovation idea including its design, testing and development phases.

Integrated approach

An approach that combines all aspects which are relevant to tackle in a project.

This can be relevant, for example,  to the implementation of low carbon strategies (within Programme Specific Objective 2).

Intervention logic

It refers to the "logic structure of a NWE project from its inception to the final delivery of results, which starts with the identification of the need, the project’s main objective, input needed (investments in time and money, activities), project outputs and ends with the final project result.

It should include an evaluation phase in order to assess whether the identified need and objectives have been met.
See the graphic in chapter 2.1 What makes a good project?

Intellectual Property Rights (IPR)

They are the rights given to persons and organisations over the outcomes of their thinking and creation activities. They may relate the protection of works, ideas, or solutions created.


Lead Partner

Refers to the project partner with overall responsibility for developing and implementing a project.

Lump sum

It is the total allocation of the grant (calculated ex-ante), paid to the project upon completion of pre-defined terms of agreement on activities and/or outputs.

Lump sums involve approximations of costs established based on fair, equitable and verifiable calculation methods. 


NUTS code

It is an acronym that stands for "Nomenclature of territorial units for statistics", created by Eurostat  to provide a standard classification of the EU territory.

It subdivides the whole EU territory into areas at three different levels.



Checks undertaken by First Level Controllers (and/or Managing Authorities) on the premises of a project partner or any other project-related site.

(Programme) Output indicators

They describe the "physical" product of spending resources through policy interventions.

Each project needs to identify and monitor its contribution to the output indicators defined in the Cooperation Programme for each Specific Objective. 

(Project main) Output

A project’s tangible and final product, service or solution that will be used further by the relevant target groups.

It tells us what has actually been produced with project funding and may take the form of different types of tools, products or model solutions developed by a project. It is captured by a Programme output indicator, and directly contributes to the achievement of the project result.

(Project) Overall objective

Is the overall strategic aim of the project or what it is trying to achieve, and contributes to one of the Programme’s Specific Objectives.


Partnership agreement

A contract between the Lead Partner and the project partners that defines the rights and obligations of each partner in relation to the project.

Programme priority

The fields of policy in which the Programme intervenes. There are 3 priorities in NWE: Innovation, Low Carbon, and Resource and Materials Efficiency.

Progress report

A reporting template for projects that must be regularly submitted to the Joint Secretariat during the projects’ implementation.

It provides an assessment by the project of what objectives have been achieved, what resources have been expended, what problems have been encountered, and whether the project is expected to be completed on time and within budget. It is linked to a specific reporting period. 

Project idea

A concept that (i) can be developed into a project proposal (STEP 1) and (ii) presents an effective contribution to the needs identified by the Programme and (iii) is the initial basis for negotiation with the Programme and possible partners.

Project partner

An eligible organisation that forms part of a project partnership and is involved in delivering the project.


Real costs

Expenditure actually incurred and paid (taking into account any rebate, discount or financial support) and supported by invoices or other documents of equivalent probative value.

Reporting period

A designated period of time during the project lifetime. Each progress report refers to one reporting period, where activities and expenditure incurred are reported on.


The immediate advantage of carrying out the project, telling us about the benefit of using the project main outputs. It should indicate the change the project is aiming for (or eventually is reaching) for the target groups.


An uncertain event or set of events that, should it occur, will have an effect on the achievement of objectives. A risk is measured by a combination of the probability of a perceived threat or opportunity occurring, and the magnitude of its impact on objectives.

Risk assessment

Aimed at obtaining a better understanding of the project, its environment and/or the project partner in order to identify and assess the risks.


It refers to the degree to which the project main outputs and/or results can be generalised or transferred to other contexts, organisations or settings.


Shared costs

Costs of the project that are common to at least two project partners, and thus shared between them according to a transparent, fair and equitable method.

Shared costs derive from a joint implementation of the project, and
link to activities that benefit a number of project partners or the whole partnership (e.g., activities related to project management, project communication).

Site visit

A visit by the staff from the Secretariat to the Lead Partner premises to perform a quality control check and monitor activities or investments on the ground.

Social innovation

It refers to the development and implementation of new ideas (products, services and models) to meet social needs and create new social relationships or collaborations.

 It represents new responses to pressing social demands, which affect the process of social interactions. See definition in the Cooperation Programme.

Specific Objective

An objective defined in the Cooperation Programme per Priority Axis. Each project needs to contribute to one Programme Specific Objective and its results the Programme aims to achieve.


Anyone with an interest in a project or who will be affected by its outputs and results.


A partner that only participates in the project in a limited capacity.

Subsidy contract

Grant agreement between the Interreg NWE Managing Authority and the project Lead Partner, defining the rights and obligations of the partnership.


Capacity of a system or process to endure. To develop such systems or processes, we often make reference to sustainable development which fully considers people, planet and wealth to ensure that none negatively impact the others.



A quantified objective expressed as a value to be reached by an indicator, usually within a given timeframe.

Target group

Individuals and/or organisations directly and positively affected by the project results.

Target groups do not necessarily receive a financial grant and they are not necessarily directly involved in the project, but they may exploit project outputs for their own benefit.

Territorial cohesion

Balanced development, focused on European solidarity and stressing inclusive growth, and the reduction of economic disparities.


Value for money

Term referring to whether the project budget is used in accordance with the principles of economy (minimising the costs of resources), efficiency (getting the most from the available resources), and effectiveness (meeting the objectives and achieving the intended results).


Work package

Component in the project’s work plan that refers to a project’s sub-objective. It groups related project activities required to produce the project’s main outputs.

A project may have up to 6 work packages of which 3 are compulsory: long term effects, communication and project management.

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