Horizon 2020
The EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation

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Measures to help revitalise our industrial production base have been identified in order to support innovation. This will aso contribute to deliver growth and jobs and kick start the economy

The main measures identified are:

  • Substantial support will be provided for innovation activities directly aiming at producing plans and arrangements or designs for new, altered or improved products, processes or services. For this purpose they may include prototyping, testing, demonstrating, piloting, large-scale product validation and market replication.
  • Significant support to demand side approaches will be another important feature, notably pre-commercial and first-commercial public procurement of innovation, as well as regulation to foster innovation and standard-setting to facilitate market entry or diffusion of innovations.
  • It is foreseen that from 2015 a small number of Inducement prizes will be developed.  These are used to spur innovation by setting a concrete, ambitious target without specifying the path to reach it.
  • There will also be the piloting of new forms and sources of innovation with a focus on public sector, social innovation, as well as private sector services and products.

Boosting industry engagement through partnerships

There will be early implementation of innovation driven Public-Private Partnerships, which will leverage private investment for the development of key technologies and areas, aligned to the objectives of Horizon 2020, with a particular emphasis on systems integration, validation, piloting and demonstration activities.

In addition, priorities reflecting the strategies of the demand-driven European Innovation Partnerships, industry-driven European Technology Platforms and other stakeholder groups are important and will be progressed. These provide foci for greater resource efficiency and critical mass, synchronisation of developments and availability of tools. Importantly, the input provided by these groupings will help identify the content of the calls for proposals.

A reinforced effort for SMEs

SMEs will be the centre consideration in the development of the Work Programme with 20% of resources to be allocated across the "Societal challenges" and "Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies", either within projects or through targeted measures. In particular, the dedicated SME instrument, following a predominately bottom-up logic,  will be introduced in order to address the needs of innovating SMEs.

The Commission has launched the next stage of the Eurostars Joint Programme, through a legislative proposal under Article 185, in partnership with Member States. This will target research and development intensive SMEs on a bottom-up basis.

A robust system for on-the-ground support to businesses and SMEs in particular will be set up, entailing a close-cooperation between the National Contact Points and Enterprise Europe Network.

Providing access to finance

Horizon 2020 will help companies and other types of organisation engaged in R&I to gain easier access, via financial instruments, to loans, guarantees, counter-guarantees and hybrid, mezzanine and equity finance.

As in the previous programmes, debt and equity facilities will be run in a demand-driven manner, though the priorities of particular sectors or of other EU programmes will be targeted if top-up funding is made available. The focus remains on attracting private investments into R&I.

Search for funding opportunities related to innovation in the Participant Portal.



Demographic ageing in Europe and beyond creates challenges for our health and care systems and our national budgets. But it also creates enormous opportunities. The Silver Economy is the new gold, Silicon Valley gurus tell us. Large new public and consumer markets of ICT products and services for ageing well are developing. Our ageing populations are drivers of economic growth. In this light, the European Commission is organising the event 'Growing the Silver Economy in Europe' to discuss how to best grow a large scale Silver Economy in Europe. Read more


This European conference will offer participants the opportunity to engage with leading experts on innovation and standardization issues, to discuss, challenge and learn how standardization can enhance the impact of innovation in Europe.

The conference will address: - How do standards support innovation and competitiveness? - How can standardization facilitate the dissemination of knowledge? - How can standards bridge the gap between innovation and the market? - How can standardization contribute to the success of Horizon2020?

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This short video animation will guide you through the first steps you will need to take to apply to Horizon 2020. Read more


Find out more about Horizon 2020 in this three minute animation clip which will give you a general overview of the programme specifics. Read more


You may have heard of the bioeconomy and wondered what it is all about. Discover it now! Read more



Vigi’Fall received Gold Medal at the Paris international Concours Lépine, which rewards the most promising inventions of the 2014 edition. Read more


EU initiative OurSpace is an open source, easy-to-use tool designed to support anyone who needs to consult with large groups of young people, regardless of nationality or language boundaries. Read more


The H2020 Information Day 'Innovation and Public sector' was held on 10 February 2014 in Brussels. Read more

Project stories


Forest fires are one of the greatest threats to Europe’s woodlands, and their incidence is expected to increase as a result of climate change. Successfully preventing forest fires has become more important than ever. However, it remains a challenge for governments – also because forest fires tend not to respect national borders. Read more


Thanks to the PARTERRE project citizens can now influence urban & environmental planning of their community more easily. During several years PARTERRE has demonstrated and validated its business potential. New e-participation methods and tools for spatial and strategic planning at the European level are now more reachable. Read more


Castles and cathedrals, statues and spires … Europe’s built environment would not be the same without these witnesses of centuries past. But, eventually, even the hardest stone will crumble. EU-funded researchers have developed innovative nano-materials to improve the preservation of our architectural heritage. Read more



Interested in Open Government, eParticipation, mobile eGovernment, cloud of public services, use of emerging technologies in public sector, etc...?

Find your way and your funding opportunities in the new programme Horizon 2020. Read the flyer!

(last update 24/3/2014) Read more

Press Release


The European Commission and the European Investment Bank Group (EIB) launched a new generation of EU financial instruments and advisory services to help innovative firms access finance more easily. "InnovFin – EU Finance for Innovators" consist of a range of tailored products – from guarantees for intermediaries that lend to SMEs to direct loans to enterprises - helping support the smallest to the largest research and innovation projects in the EU and countries associated to Horizon 2020. Read more

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