Horizon Europe is open to researchers and innovators from around the globe who are encouraged to team up with EU partners in preparing proposals. Here is an overview of HE funding opportunities for third countries, and where to get information and advice, to increase your chances to be successful in your applications.
Launched in 2021, Horizon Europe (2021-2027), with a budget of €95.5 billion, will offer significant opportunities for collaborative research between third countries and European partners. All researchers and innovators and all types of organizations from the EU and from all over the world can participate in Horizon Europe, mainly through calls for proposals.
The work programme of Horizon Europe for the period 2021-2022 has been adopted on 16 June 2021, outlining the objectives and specific topic areas that will receive a total of €14.7 billion in funding. These investments will help accelerate the green and digital transitions and will contribute to sustainable recovery from the coronavirus pandemic and to EU resilience against future crises.
Horizon Europe boosts EU-Africa cooperation in research & innovation
This HE work programme includes targeted actions with key non-EU partners, notably the first ever ambitious and comprehensive Africa Initiative (dowwload the factsheet on Africa initiative), a result of the EU-AU Research & Innovation Ministerial meeting that took place in July 2020 and stressed joint priorities, such as public health, green transition, innovation & technology and capacities for science.
As a strategic partner, the EU seeks to enhance cooperation with Africa to promote actions targeted to finding locally adapted solutions to challenges that are global in nature, but which often hit Africa hardest. The Horizon Europe work programme 2021-2022 includes 36 topics with a budget of around €350 million under Calls for Proposals that are particularly relevant for cooperation with Africa.
The calls for proposals require or encourage participation of African entities. Topics range from climate change, rural innovation, sustainable food systems and sustainable energy to bringing European highly innovative SMEs to the forefront of African markets.
Here is the link to the presentation made on the Africa initiative by Nienke Buisman, Head of Unit, International Cooperation II at the European Commission, during the European Research and Innovation days : https://bit.ly/3jcsAhL
And you can also click on this link to get the Africa Initiative Calls for Proposals: https://bit.ly/3gOvWWO
Horizon Europe also wants to improve synergy with R&I programmes targeting Africa, such as the OACPS R&I Programme (and its key component ACP Innovation Fund), the African Research Initiative on Scientific Excellence (ARISE), and the new EU-funded project ENRICH in Africa.
Presented at the final Africa Europe Innovation Partnership (AEIP) conference (30 June 2021), and building on the work and the numerous established tech hub linkages of the AEIP pilot , this project aims to improve the incubators, accelerators, and entrepreneurial skills in both regions, and connect the EU and Africa ecosystems.
Furthermore, a special advisory group on African-European Research and Innovation cooperation is currently working on how to enhance this cooperation. An exchange with its 6 high-level experts is scheduled on the 29th of June (2.pm CEST), during which the first recommendations on the 4 thematic pillars- public health systems; research and innovation; innovation and technology revolution; and green transition in Africa- will be presented and discussed. (https://ri-ag-exchange2021.service-facility.eu/)
How to get information about EU funding opportunities?
There are different ways to get guidance, practical information and assistance on all aspects of participation in Horizon Europe, notably through:
1/ Funding and tender opportunities portal (where the first calls for proposals were opened on 22 June 2021). During the EC R&I days, a session titled ’ R&I funding goes digital: The Funding and Tenders portal’ explained, in a video, how to navigate on the HE platform for calls, how to register, how to use the filter section, etc….You can watch it https://youtu.be/XEkxkJSrBr8
2/ Info Days and Brokerage events
The European Commission is organising from 28 June to 12 July a series of events (Info Days), and linked to them, the different National Contact Points networks are organising international virtual brokerage events. These brokerage events aim to gather all the relevant stakeholders intending to apply for funding in the Horizon Europe various clusters, thus supporting the development of consortia and project ideas.
- Info Days : https://www.horizon-europe-infodays2021.eu/
- Brokerage events: https://www.horizoneuropencpportal.eu/stage
The European Commission has recently launched (30 June 2021) a new platform, the EU-Africa cooperation in research and innovation portal, to provide a one-stop-shop for all policy-makers and stakeholders interested in EU-Africa cooperation on research and innovation.
4/EU social media (notably @EUScienceInnov)
5/National Contact Points (NCPs), established in many non-EU and non-associated countries (“third countries”). The NCP nomination for associated and third countries is still running. But you can check the status here, and search by country: https://ec.europa.eu/info/fundingtenders/opportunities/portal/screen/support/ncp
You will find (in the illustration below) some good reasons to contact National Contact Points, if they are established in your country.
6/EU delegations in your country