Horizon 2020

Horizon 2020, the current EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, has started on January 1, 2014. It connects seamlessly to the 7th EU Framework Programme for Research and unites all funding programmes of the European Commission relevant for research and innovation. During the next seven years, research and innovation will thus receive funding worth about EUR 70.2 billion (without Euratom). Horizon 2020 includes parts of the previous Competitiveness and Innovation Programme (CIP) as well as the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT).

Horizon 2020 consist of three priorities, namely:

  • Excellent Science covering support for curiosity-driven blue sky research - i.e. European Research Council (ERC) and Future Emerging Technologies (FET), research infrastructures as well as research careers and mobility through Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA);
  • Industrial Leadership providing support to industry and Small- and Medium Sized Enterprises (SME) in research and innovation activities, including instruments to foster development of enabling technologies as well as financial instruments (incorporating some parts of the former Competitiveness and Innovation Programme);
  • Societal Challenges supporting collaborative research projects that address seven specific societal challenges.

Horizon 2020 addresses researchers from universities, research organisations, enterprises, international special interest organisations and other legal entities of the EU Member States and the Associated States of the Framework Programme. Institutions from third countries are principally entitled to participate. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have access to their own fast funding mechanisms in order to tap their specifically high innovation potential.

The following five programmes are also funded under the scheme of Horizon 2020: Fast Track to Innovation Pilot, Spreading Excellence and Widening Participation, Science with and for Society, European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) and Euratom.