* SMEs in Horizon 2020
Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) are encouraged to participate across the whole Horizon 2020 programme. They can engage in collaborative projects as part of a consortium and they are supported through a new dedicated SME instrument designed specifically for highly innovative smaller companies. The integrated approach and simplification efforts should lead to a minimum of 20%, or about € 8.65 billion, of the total combined budgets of the specific objective 'Leadership in enabling and industrial technologies' (LEITs) and the ‘Societal Challenges’ going to SMEs. The SME instrument will be crucial in achieving this target. Over the course of Horizon 2020, at least € 3 billion will be allocated to the SME instrument.
The new dedicated SME instrument
The new instrument aims to fill gaps in funding for early-stage, high-risk research and innovation by SMEs as well as stimulating breakthrough innovation. It provides easy access with simple rules and procedures. It will be used across all societal challenges and the enabling and industrial technologies specific objective. It will encourage SMEs to put forward their most innovative ideas with an EU dimension. It targets highly innovative SMEs showing a strong ambition to develop, grow and internationalise, regardless of whether they are high-tech and research-driven or non-research conducting, social or service companies.
Only SMEs will be able to apply for funding. Even single company support will be possible to ensure market relevance and to increase commercialisation of project results. SMEs can decide how best to organise the project and with whom to collaborate, including subcontracting tasks if they lack in-house capabilities.
Learn more here.
Assistance for SMEs in the life sciences sector
In addition to the network of National Contact Points (NCPs), the main structure providing information and assistance on all aspects of participation in Horizon 2020, the European Commission support SMEs in the life sciences sector through the support action Fit for Health 2.0. It includes a quality checked database containing expertise profiles of researchers and SMEs acting in the life sciences sector. The service includes next to partner search activities advice on all aspects related to a research project, starting with help in first orientation and strategy development to proposal preparation, implementation, exploitation and promotion.
For any enquiries you can contact Antoine Mialhe