Horizon 2020
The EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation

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Science with and for Society

The specific objective is to build effective cooperation between science and society, to recruit new talent for science and to pair scientific excellence with social awareness and responsibility.

The ‘Science with and for Society’ programme will be instrumental in addressing the European societal challenges tackled by Horizon 2020, building capacities and developing innovative ways of connecting science to society. It will make science more attractive (notably to young people), increase society's appetite for innovation, and open up further research and innovation activities.

It allows all societal actors (researchers, citizens, policy makers, business, third sector organisations etc.) to work together during the whole research and innovation process in order to better align both the process and its outcomes with the values, needs and expectations of European society. This approach to research and innovation is called Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI).

Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI)

RRI is an inclusive approach to research and innovation (R&I), to ensure that societal actors work together during the whole research and innovation process. It aims to better align both the process and outcomes of R&I, with the values, needs and expectations of European society.

In general terms, RRI implies anticipating and assessing potential implications and societal expectations with regard to research and innovation. In practice, RRI consists of designing and implementing R&I policy that will:

  • engage society more broadly in its research and innovation activities,
  • increase access to scientific results,
  • ensure gender equality, in both the research process and research content,
  • take into account the ethical dimension, and
  • promote formal and informal science education.


08/12/2015 - 01:00

This event will feature high-level speakers and expert panels discussing the successful actions already taken under the Millennium Development Goals and analyse those which proved to be inefficient.

It will also address what research and innovation can do to make the difference in the field of Maternal and Newborn Health under the Sustainable Development Goals.

The conference will take place in Square Meeting Centre, Brussels

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09/06/2015 - 19:09

All signed Horizon 2020 projects have now been published. Read more

09/06/2015 - 17:54

All signed Horizon 2020 projects have been published. Read more

27/01/2015 - 15:08

Responsible Research and Innovation is the European Union's inclusive approach to ensure that societal actors work together during the whole research and innovation process. Its aim is to help align Research & Innovation with the values, needs and expectations of European society. Read more


19/10/2015 - 14:48

ICT 2015 - Innovate, Connect, Transform, takes place in Lisbon from 20th to 22nd October 2015 with some of the most important European players in ICT, the excellence of EU universities and research centres and flourishing SMEs and start-ups. Read more

16/10/2015 - 12:09

Cast your vote and help decide which challenge should be the theme of the prize! Read more

14/10/2015 - 11:59

The European Commission will invest almost €16 billion in research and innovation in the next two years under Horizon 2020, the EU's research and innovation funding scheme, following a new work programme for 2016-17 adopted on 13 October. The work programme is now available on the participant portal. Read more

Project stories

04/11/2015 - 13:10

An EU-funded consortium is bridging the gap between science and the general public, fostering real and virtual environments in which researchers and citizens collaborate on cutting-edge initiatives for the benefit of both science and society. Read more

28/09/2015 - 12:13

The widening gap between rich and poor is leading to segregation in more and more European cities. The rich and the poor are living at increasing distance from each other, and this can be disastrous for the social stability and competitive power of cities. These are the conclusions of joint research of Prof. Maarten van Ham, ERC grantee at Delft University of Technology, and Prof. Tiit Tammaru, Dr. Szymon Marcińczak and Prof. Sako Musterd. Read more

23/09/2015 - 11:35

Sub-Saharan Africa is modernising fast, changing the dynamic between town and countryside. What is the best way to manage the impacts on rural and urban communities? An EU-funded project is collecting data that helps policymakers make wise choices for inclusive development. Read more


13/10/2015 - 18:53

This monitoring and evaluation report assesses in a thorough and detailed manner how the different SSH disciplines have been integrated into the projects funded in 2014 under the Societal Challenges and the Industrial Leadership priorities. Read more

25/09/2015 - 17:40

Horizon 2020 is the EU’s biggest ever programme for research and innovation, and it has got off to an excellent start. This brochure presents information on the first 100 calls for proposals that closed by 1 December 2014. Read more

24/09/2015 - 20:03

Horizon 2020 is the biggest EU research and innovation programme ever. Almost €80 billion of funding is available over seven years (2014 to 2020) – in addition to the private and national public investment that this money will attract. This publication presents the full set of Key Performance and Cross-Cutting Issues Indicators for Horizon 2020, including those for the European Institute of Technology and EURATOM. Read more

Press Release

13/10/2015 - 18:51

Carlos Moedas, Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation said: "Research and innovation are the engines of Europe's progress and vital to addressing today's new pressing challenges like immigration, climate change, clean energy and healthy societies. Over the next two years, €16 billion from Horizon 2020 will support Europe's top scientific efforts, making the difference to citizens' lives." Read more

08/04/2015 - 18:50

Researchers, businesses and innovators from Ukraine will now be able to fully participate in Horizon 2020, the European Union's research and innovation funding programme, on equal terms with EU Member States and other associated countries. Read more

02/07/2014 - 14:14

Data collection and exploitation is a growing phenomenon; in response to industry and grassroots demands the European Commission is calling on national governments to wake-up to this big data revolution. One of the main concrete proposed actions to solve these problems is the creation of an open data incubator (within the Horizon 2020 framework), to help SMEs set up supply chains based on data and use cloud computing more. Read more