The SKA Organisation welcomes interest from potential industry partners. Please see below for responses to frequently asked questions regarding industry involvement in the request for expressions of interest (EoI) in stage one of the SKA preconstruction phase.
Q: How can industry get paid for their role in a work package consortium (WPC)?
A: The work package consortia will not be funded by the SKA Organisation. Money will come from the funding agencies and other sources identified by the members of the SKA Organisation. Industry can be paid as a subcontractor of a university or research organisation. A second possibility is for industry to be paid directly from these funds, but that may not be allowed in all cases (e.g. if it is seen as state support). The third option is self-funding by industry, although care must be taken that potential future procurements are not affected. Indeed, the threat of “lock-out” in the procurement process should be avoided wherever possible. Organisations (including industry) based in countries that are not members of the SKA Organisation may, in all likelihood, have to self-fund or look to their own funding agencies for support. The value of any such work will not be entered into the SKA Organisation’s contribution register.
Q: Can industry lead a work package consortium?
A: The EoI does not exclude this possibility. Whether the funding model of stage one work allows it is not clear, that may differ from country to country.
Certainly, if there are no research organisations or universities able to lead a WPC, then this may be an attractive option. The board of directors could still decide that industry cannot lead WPCs, this should be clear in time for the request for proposals (RfP).
Q: When will information on the SKA intellectual property (IP) policy and procurement strategy be ready?
A: The outline of both will be available when the RfP is issued. Both these documents require approval by the Board of Directors of the SKA Organisation. The full IP policy and the procurement strategy will be completed thereafter. Exactly how long this takes depends on the approaches advocated in the member countries and whether principles of juste-retour will be applied.
Q: What further documents will form part of the RfP?
A: It is currently foreseen that with the RfP the following documents will be released in addition to the full stage one work breakdown structure (WBS) and statement of work (SOW) (and the documents referenced therein):
- Template agreement for consortia;
- The criteria to be used to evaluate the bids;
- Updated system engineering management plan;
- SKA stage one draft project management plan;
- Templates for major technical documents such as requirement specifications (SRS), architectural design documents (ADD), procurement specifications and development specifications.
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