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EU Framework Programmes

EU support for RIs in the context of its Framework Programmes (FPs) began with FP2 (1987-1991) when it had a budget of about €30 million. From these relatively humble beginnings, FP7 (2007-2013) earmarked €1.85 billion for RIs between 2007 and 2013 and the Horizon 2020 Programme will support research infrastructures with about €2.5 billions between 2014 and 2020.

The main objective of the action under H2020 is to endow Europe with world-class research infrastructures which are accessible to all researchers in Europe and beyond and fully exploit their potential for scientific advance and innovation.

Three main lines of actions will be supported:

  • Developing the European infrastructures for 2020 and beyond.

    Support will be provided for the implementation and operation of the research infrastructures listed on the ESFRI Roadmap. Support will cover the preparatory phase of new ESFRI projects, and the implementation and the operation phases of prioritised ESFRI projects.
    Prioritisation process for the implementation of the ESFRI roadmap In its conclusions of 26th May 2014, the Council acknowledges the work done by ESFRI to identify priority projects which are mature enough to be under implementation in 2015-2016 and whose timely implementation is considered essential to extend the frontiers of knowledge in the fields concerned. Here you will find more information about prioritisation process.
    Further worldclass facilities will also be part of this action. Support will also be granted for optimising the use of the national facilities by integrating them into networks and opening their doors to all European researchers. This is a continuity of the so-called Integrating Activities under FP7; the third action will support further deployment and development of ICT based e-infrastructures which are essential to enable access to distant resources, remote collaboration, and massive data processing in all scientific fields.
  • Fostering the innovation potential of the infrastructures and their human resources.

    Research infrastructures are very often incubators of innovative technologies. The EU support will encourage them to stimulate innovation both in the infrastructures themselves and in their supplier and user industries.
  • Reinforcing European policy and international cooperation.

    The aims are to exploit synergies between national and Union initiatives by setting up partnerships between relevant policy makers and funding bodies or advisory groups such as ESFRI, e-Infrastructure Reflection Group (e-IRG), EIROforum organisations. This action will also facilitate the development of global research infrastructures and the cooperation of European infrastructures with their non-European counterparts, ensuring their global interoperability and access.

All information on the action, work programme and how to apply is available on the H2020 website and the Participant Portal.

The Network of National Contact Points is the main structure to provide guidance, practical information and assistance on all aspects of participation in H2020.

Further information