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TOPWOOD management meeting at the INRA direction

TOPWOOD management meeting
July 19 2016 , Paris, France

On July 19 2016 a meeting was held at General Direction of INRA, Paris. This meeting was attended by P. Jarraud (chief of the INRA Financial Direction), M. Philippe (jurist at the INRA General Direction), S. Ecole (deputy of the chief of the INRA Financial Direction) and P. Rozenberg (coordinator of the TOPWOOD project).

The purpose of the meeting was to consider problems and solutions concerning the incompatibility between certain TOPWOOD operating rules and the INRA directives for travel allowances.

The INRA text ruling travel allowances will be modified and made more flexible to better adapt to the European Union Marie Sklodowska-Curie RISE projects rules. This change will take effect after the date of presentation of the new memo to the Administrative Board of INRA, in October 2016.

  • costs of the missions of more than 60 days will no longer be capped at 40% of the mission flat rate.
  • the ability to pay travel allowances to staff of foreign organisms will no longer be limited to high-level experts but will be extended to all foreign participants of such projects Marie Sklodowska-Curie RISE.

On the other hand:

  • payment of travel expenses to INRA staff is subject to the production of receipts (including housing bills). In practice this means that if the total [meal allowance + justified housing cost] is less than the RISE flat rate allowance, the difference should NOT be paid to the INRA (or treated as such) staff, in contradiction with the so-called RISE rule of "flat rate". In this case INRA does not respect the grant agreement and the EU will certainly request the refund of the amount not received by the INRA staff.
  • the new rules will not be retroactive: regarding the project TOPWOOD, agents that have not received 100% of the amount of the travel allowances paid for missions that took place between the 1st April 2015 and the date entry into force of the new INRA directive (November 2016?) theoretically cannot benefit from these new rules.