This article is the third and last part of a series of articles about how to make a good communication, dissemination and exploitation (CDE) plan. Part 1 dealt with the communication aspects, part 2 presented what the dissemination plan should contain and we will now explain how to write an exploitation plan.
Exploitation concerns the impact of the results of your project on science, industry, society and governments mostly after its end.
Results are any tangible or intangible output of the project, such as data, knowledge and information whatever their form or nature, whether or not they can be protected.
Stakeholders should be targeted with specific results according to the desired impact the project aims to have. Below a summary table.
|Research community||Publications (Papers, Books) Posters, Presentations, Data, Softwares||Further research activities and publications containing new insightful results|
|Industry||Patenting, Pilot plants and prototypes, Transfer agreements, Joint venture/Start-ups, New products and services
Development of standard tests and procedures
Codes of conduct
Generate economic growth
|Civil society||New products, services or technology
Trainings, presentations and visits
Skills and knowledge
|Increase quality of life, Improve living environment, Improve urban and rural services, Improve healthcare, Reduce energy consumption, Increase product quality control, Improve employability|
Policy papers and recommendations
|Revision or creation of a new directive or regulation (EU Law)|
To create the good results and to make sure these have a large impact, a series of accompanying tasks should be carried out during the project execution and should be included in the exploitation plan. This list is not exhaustive as each project has different needs and exploitation possibilities.
- Technological Watch: After having defined clearly the extent of the technological field of the project, create a global database of existing knowledge including patents, papers and public releases. The partner in charge should send every 6 months a summary to the consortium to stay updated about the latest developments, follow market trends, and plan the possible patenting or publication of project results. The world changes rapidly and competition is tough!
- Intellectual Property Rights Management: Linked to the task above, partners should protect their intellectual property developed during the project from possible external threats. This encompasses also the development of mitigation strategies in case of internal disagreements between partners that might occur following the rules defined in the Consortium Agreement.
- Exploitable Results Identification: Around the middle of the project, the consortium should start to map the potential results that could be exploited, meaning that this result will be used and further developed after the end of the project. This mapping is ideally done during dedicated sessions including all members of the consortium such as Exploitation Strategy Seminars offered by external consultants. Concentrate on the most promising results and develop them as much as possible by engaging with potential users and obtaining feedback.
- Market Analysis: Once the key exploitable results defined, perform a market analysis to assess the potential of each result. It encompasses a quantitative and qualitative assessment looking into the size of the market both in volume and in value, the various customer segments and buying patterns, the competition, and the economic environment in terms of entry barriers and regulation. More information here.
- Business Model: To design the business model for a specific result, frameworks such as the Business Model Canvas and the Value Proposition Canvas are recommended. Define target users, identify and evaluate the potential sales strategies (direct sales, licensing, joint venture, spin out…), assess the requirements for further technology development/scale-up to support market entry. More information here.