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ESF - European Social Fund

For more and better jobs

The European Social Fund:

  • promotes employment – mainly by funding initiatives to help people improve their skills and job prospects
  • provides funding across the EU, in particular in areas with the greatest need – with a low GDP compared to the EU average
  • is providing €80 billion (in current prices) in funding over period 2014-2020 .

Who does what?

The ESF strategy and budget are negotiated and decided on jointly by EU governments, the European Parliament and the Commission.

Its 7-year operational programmes are planned by governments and the European Commission.

Funding is given to a wide range of organisations – public and private – which provide people with practical help to find a job, or stay in their job.

More about the ESF


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