Preliminary Contract

Already in the run-up to handing in a Project, confidential data is often being exchanged. Therefore, certain aspects of collaboration within a Consortium should be agreed upon already at the stage of the Proposal preparation, even without the guarantee of a successful evaluation. The members of the Consortium must be able to trust all Participants to act in everybody’s joint interests in order to submit successfully a Project Proposal.

A Preliminary Contract is best already concluded when taking up first discussions within the Consortium in order to regulate the collaboration between the Project Participants at an early stage and to enable a safe exchange of information. There are several types of Preliminary Contracts:

Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) / Confidential Disclosure Agreement (CDA)

This type of Preliminary Contract does not yet define project details; however, it commits the signatories to a confidential approach towards the exchanged information within the scope of the collaboration.

Letter of Intent (LoI) / Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)

As compared to the NDA, the Letter of Intent summarizes the planned form of collaboration within the Project in more detail. Usually, these kinds of Preliminary Contracts already contain regulations regarding confidentiality, IPR management, liability, finances, and project governance.

These pre-contractual agreements are usually of legally binding nature and should be discussed with EU GrantsAccess in case they are related to an EU Project.

For researchers of ETH Zurich and the University of Zurich, EU GrantsAccess takes care of reviewing the Preliminary Contract and obtaining the necessary signatures.