Dissemination, exploitation and communication plan

Dissemination, exploitation and communication plan

Dissemination, exploitation and communication (DEC) plan

A good DEC plan

  • Is done in the project planning phase and modified throughout the projects lifetime.
  • Is carefully executed.
  • Has meaningful objectives. (Choose the means to communicate according the target audience. Think about the reaction or change you expect from the audience. )
  • Is targeted and adapted to various audiences including the media and the public.
  • Includes the right medium and means. (Consider a wide variety of different means - including one-way exchange such as website, press releases, brochures, etc. or two-way exchange such as exhibitions, school visits, internet debates, etc. - and engage.)
  • Is proportionate to the size of the project.

Plan your dissemination, exploitation and communication (DEC) activities carefully. You should be familiar with policy texts related to the funding call and understand what the funder is looking to achieve with the funding. Always start to plan your dissemination and exploitation activities well in advance.

Your DEC plan is key to maximising your impact. It should describe, in a concrete and comprehensive manner, the area in which you expect to make an impact and who are the potential users of your results. Your plan should also describe how you intend to use the appropriate channels of dissemination and interaction with potential users.

Below you can find an example of a communication plan that can be used in funding applications. The same table can be modified to be used for dissemination and exploitation activities. Obviously, the channels would be different scientific publications and conferences for dissemination etc.

In your plan, carefully elaborate the following

What results would you like to achieve?

Main uses
What are the main uses of your results?

Main users
Who could use your results? Who could develop them further?

How do you reach your end-users? How can you engage them?

Commit the stakeholders

Commit potential end-user and stakeholders in your project planning from early on, as they may help guide your work towards tangible outcomes. End-users can and often should be involved as partners in the project, or as members of an advisory board or user group tasked with testing the results and providing feedback. Think critically about the possible barriers to application of your results. How will you tackle them? It is often advisable to have the end-users involved in your project to write the exploitation plan.

At the very least they should be actively involved in the planning process. There are also other important issues to be considered related to the exploitations such as possible barriers and obstacles as well as issues related to innovation management. Especially in matters concerning innovation management seek help from your research support services or the University Innovation Centre.

Business Model Canvas

You can also use a Business Model Canvas, which traditionally is used to describe a company's or product's value proposition, infrastructure, customers, and finances to describe how your research project's results will end up generating revenue.