Finishing our first European project

On March 31st, we will officially finalize our very first European grant project, CEDMO. In the past couple of weeks, as we were writing up some last documents and finalizing deliverables, we reflected on the two and a half years we dedicated to this project. 

When KInIT was founded in September 2020, we started preparing the CEDMO proposal straight ahead, almost from the “day two”. We made some friends, we joined a consortium, but we had no direct track record of international project work. So we threw ourselves into the proposal work – especially Mária Bieliková, Ivan Srba, Michal Kompan and me

For almost two weeks, we dived deep into proposal writing. We put our hearts and souls into it. At that time, we simply didn’t have enough experience with proposal writing so it took us much more time and effort than it would today, after successfully getting another 9 European projects. Back then, we lacked the necessary experience, but we balanced that with doubling the effort. Here of course, we should not omit the role of our partners in the consortium, most notably its coordinator, the Charles University in Prague, whose team was led by Václav Moravec.

When we received the info about the proposal’s success, it was a great relief and tremendous joy. There were no other open grant proposals that would suit us and getting a first project early on was very important for proving the concept of our institute. It also opened many doors for us. Having at least one successful proposal behind us, we were able to join other consortia for Horizon Europe project calls which started opening soon after we got the CEDMO project.

The project started in October 2021 and we began working on two fact-checker support tools. We worked on the idea of a fact-check finder app and started scraping data for what later became the MultiClaim dataset. One year later, we wrote a paper on the topic which got accepted for the main track of the prestigious EMNLP conference in Singapore in 2023. Later into the project, we switched to work on the CheckWorthy Claim detector app. In the meantime, we also worked on a game with a purpose called the CEDMO game.

On paper, the project was relatively small and we certainly invested much more  effort than the project covered. But again, the extra work allowed us to apply for many other projects and contributed to building our reputation. We learned so much on this project, research-wise and also from the organization and administration standpoint.

We can safely call this project a great success, and I would like to thank everyone who contributed to the project. 

The project ended in March 2024 but the story fortunately does not end here. We are thrilled to announce that we succeeded in extending the CEDMO project for another 2.5 years. We will start working on CEDMO 2.0 on May 1st, so stay tuned for more information. We are very excited that we will get to continue our efforts to help society to resist the effects of increasing exposure to mis- and disinformation.