Evaluation

Platform proposals needed to have access to methodological expertise for the full range of the foreseen research activities from bench to bedside, a proven track record, and professional infrastructure for the successful performance of clinical research. Academic CTUs of one of the participating Universities or University Hospitals (or PedNet in case of pediatric platforms) were to be involved. A letter of support of the rectors/directors of involved institutions was required.

The platforms were formally evaluated by independent peer reviewers on the following dimensions: innovative potential and impact on clinical practice; translational quality, i.e. the platform covered the full range of scientific activities from bench to bedside; access to sufficiently high numbers of patients to be included in phase I to IIIa clinical trials; access to existing infrastructure and tools (databases, diagnostic tools, experimental systems, therapeutic facilities, bio-banks, etc); strategic importance for the host institutions; experience and track record of the consortium in charge of the platform. Coverage of paediatric conditions were considered a particular asset.

An International Evaluation Panel performed a  final ranking of platforms according to their overall merit. The National Steering Group, consisting of representatives of Universities of Basel, Bern, Geneva, Lausanne and Zurich, ETHZ, EPFL and CRUS recommended funding of platforms based on the final ranking.