European Commission - Research

FP7 in Brief illustration from FP7 in Brief brochure How to get involved in the EU 7th Framework Programme for Research

How is FP 7 structured?
What are the "Specific Programmes"?

The Specific Programmes constitute the five major building blocks of FP7:


The core of FP7, representing two thirds of the overall budget, is the Cooperation programme. It fosters collaborative research across Europe and other partner countries through projects by transnational consortia of industry and academia. Research will be carried out in ten key thematic areas:

  • Health
  • Food, agriculture and fisheries, and biotechnology
  • Information and communication technologies
  • Nanosciences, nanotechnologies, materials and new production technologies
  • Energy
  • Environment (including climate change)
  • Transport (including aeronautics)
  • Socio-economic sciences and the humanities
  • Space
  • Security


The Ideas programme will support "frontier research" solely on the basis of scientific excellence. Research may be carried out in any area of science or technology, including engineering, socio-economic sciences and the humanities. In contrast with the Cooperation programme, there is no obligation for cross-border partnerships. Projects are implemented by "individual teams" around a "principal investigator". The programme is implemented via the new European Research Council (ERC).
For more information, see



The People programme provides support for researcher mobility and career development, both for researchers inside the European Union and internationally. It is implemented via a set of Marie Curie actions, providing fellowships and other measures to help researchers build their skills and competences throughout their careers:

  • Initial training of researchers - Marie Curie Networks
  • Industry-academia partnerships
  • Co-funding of regional, national and international mobility programmes
  • Intra-European fellowships
  • International dimension - outgoing and incoming fellowships,
  • international cooperation scheme, reintegration grants
  • Marie Curie Awards

For more information, see


The Capacities programme strengthens the research capacities that Europe needs if it is to become a thriving knowledge-based economy.

It covers the following activities:

  • Research infrastructures
  • Research for the benefit of SMEs
  • Regions of Knowledge
  • Research Potential
  • Science in Society
  • Specific activities of international cooperation

Nuclear Research

The programme for nuclear research and training activities will comprise research, technological development, international cooperation, dissemination of technical information, and exploitation activities, as well as training. Two specific programmes are planned:

  • the first programme includes: fusion energy research (in particular ITER), and nuclear fission and radiation protection;
  • the second programme covers the activities of the Joint Research Centre (JRC) in the field of nuclear energy, including nuclear waste management, and environmental impact, nuclear safety, and nuclear security. In addition to direct actions in the nuclear field, the JRC carries out research in a number of other areas to provide scientific and technological support to EU policy making (see

FP7 budget (€ 50 521 million, current prices)

€ million
JRC (EC) 1 751
Cooperation 32 413
Ideas 7 510
People 4 750
Capacities 4 097
FP7 budget: chart

Note: Euratom FP: € 2.7 billion over 5 years - not included above

cover of the brochure
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