Beginner’s guide to EU funding

Main funding sources

Main funding sources


Erasmus+ is the new EU programme for education, training, youth and sport. It aims to boost young people’s skills and employability and to modernise education, training and youth work.

Certain activities are managed centrally by the Education, Audio-visual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) in Brussels while other, ‘decentralised’ activities are managed by national agencies in each country.

Combatting youth unemployment

The Youth Employment Initiative supports young people not in education, employment or training in regions with a youth unemployment rate above 25 %. The initiative complements other projects undertaken at national level, including those under the European Social Fund (ESF).

Youth Guarantee is a new approach to dealing with youth unemployment. Unemployed people under 25 — whether registered with job-search services or not — get a good-quality, specific offer of work within four months of leaving formal education or becoming unemployed.

The EU will top up national spending on these schemes through the European Social Fund and the Youth Employment Initiative.

The managing authorities in each EU country can provide more details on both the Youth Employment Initiative and Youth Guarantee.

Young researchers and entrepreneurs

‘Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions’ are open to researchers in all disciplines, from life-saving healthcare to ‘blue-sky’ science. The activities are implemented by the Research Executive Agency (REA).

COSME — Erasmus for Young Entrepreneur is a cross-border exchange programme which enables aspiring young entrepreneurs to learn from entrepreneurs with experience. It is managed by the Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME).

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