Instructions for Centralized Actions' lump sum budgets
- ProgrammesHigher educationErasmus+Erasmus+ for higher educationInternationalisationEducation development
Lump sum budgets have been introduced as a simplification. Lump sum funding removes all obligations on actual, incurred cost reporting per project and financial ex post audits i.e. a major reduction of administrative burden. The intention is a shift in focus from financial management and checking costs to focus on content of the projects (outcomes, milestones and deliverables).
Lump sum budgets are based on cost estimations (either upfront in the EU granting authority decision or in the proposal by the applicants):
- Where the lump sum is prefixed by the call (lump sum type 1a), your budget must equal (add up to) the prefixed total.
- Where the lump sum is based on pre-fixed building block amounts for certain activities (lump sum type 1b), you will be expected to fill out a calculator, to show how you arrived at the total amount.
- Where the lump sum is project-based (lump sum type 2), you will have to submit a detailed budget table with the project budget. In the lump sum type 2 detailed budget table, you must provide realistic cost estimations for each cost category (personnel costs, subcontracting costs, purchase costs, other cost categories) per beneficiary and affiliated entity (if any), and per work package.
Your proposal will be evaluated by an evaluation committee. The evaluators will assess the cost estimations against the proposed activities under one of the award criteria. Award criteria can be found int the Programme Guide for Erasmus+. They will ensure that cost estimations are reasonable and non-excessive and whether the resources proposed, and the budget-split of lump sum shares will allow completing the activities as described in the proposal. Cost estimations that are clearly overestimated or underestimated will lead to a decreased score under the award criterion concerned.
In the lump sum type 2 detailed budget table, you must provide realistic cost estimations for each cost category (personnel costs, subcontracting costs, purchase costs, other cost categories) per beneficiary and affiliated entity (if any), and per work package. The cost needs to be realistic and reasonable and in line with the proposal. The commission has made some recommendations for some cost categories like traveling in Europe. The costs are based on real costs and can therefore be different depending on the partner country.
The grant agreement will be prepared based on the proposal you submitted. Following the result of the evaluation and the recommendations of experts, the overall lump sum is fixed in the grant agreement. The breakdown of lump sum shares per beneficiary and per work package is also included in the grant agreement.
Payments of the grant follow the standard schedule: a pre-financing payment, interim payments at the end of each reporting period, and a final payment of the balance.
Costs are specified on each Work Package and further on each Beneficiary. Transfer of amounts between work packages is only acceptable if:
- Work packages are not already completed (and declared in periodic report)
- Justified by the implementation of the action
- Amendment does not call into question the decision awarding the grant or breach the principle of equal treatment of applicants
At the end of each reporting period, projects need to submit the technical and financial report in the Periodic Reporting module of the online Grant Management System (also known as Funding and Tenders Portal, FTOP). The approach is the same as for actual costs grants except that in lump sum grants:
- the coordinator must complete the ‘status of work packages’ table in the Grant Management System and mark work packages as ‘completed’ or ‘not completed’
- the technical report should focus on the completion of work packages (in particular, when you declare a work package as completed, the report must explain and justify this)
- the financial report is much simplified and to a large extent automated.
In order to ensure sound financial management, projects should follow accounting procedures in line with national legislation and international standards.
The EACEA offers support for selected projects for the administration of the budget. Please note that this instruction is for actions that are administered by the EACEA/ European Commission. For projects administered by the National Erasmus+ office please see separate instructions on budget management.