Horizon Europe succeeds and is a continuation of the Horizon 2020 framework programme. Its objective is to make the European Union stand out in the fields of research and innovation.
In the words of Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, the programme is "our main tool to strengthen our scientific and technological base, develop solutions for healthier living, drive digital transformation and fight climate change, for our collective resilience".
It has a total budget of 95.5 billion euros for a seven-year period.
Like its predecessor, Horizon Europe, is structured around different pillars: Excellent Science (Pillar 1), Global challenges and European industrial competitiveness (Pillar 2), Innovative Europe (Pillar 3). These are underpinned by the cross-cutting objective (horizontal pillar) of widening participation and strengthening the European Research Area (ERA).
PILLAR 1 - Excellent science
The first pillar has a budget of 25 billion euros (27% of the total Horizon Europe budget). Its focus is on strengthening the EU's position as a world leader in research. More specifically:
• Supporting exploratory research and projects at the frontier of knowledge (European Research Council - ERC).
• Encouraging research mobility between countries, sectors and disciplines through research and education programmes (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions).
• Developing world-class research infrastructures in Europe, promoting their innovation potential and human resources, and supporting the EU's policy on research and innovation.
PILLAR 2 - Global challenges and European industrial competitiveness
The second pillar represents more than half (55.3%) of the Horizon Europe budget (53.5 billion euros). Its focus is on supporting activities and research targeting societal challenges through six clusters:
• Cluster 1: Health
• Cluster 2: Culture, creativity, and inclusive society
• Cluster 3: Civil security for society
• Cluster 4: Digital, industry and space
• Cluster 5: Climate, energy and mobility
• Cluster 6: Food, bioeconomy, natural resources, agriculture, environment
PILLAR 3 - Innovative Europe
This pillar has a budget of 13.6 billion euros (14%) and operates through three entities:
• European Innovation Council (EIC), a new initiative tasked with identifying, developing, and implementing breakthrough innovations.
• European Innovation Ecosystems (EIE), play a role in strengthening the European innovation landscape by connecting all public, private, national, and local actors within Europe’s innovation ecosystems, to increase their opportunities for developing their products and bringing them to market.
• European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), which is tasked with strengthening Europe's ability to innovate by structuring research, innovation and education through knowledge and innovation communities (KIC).
Widening participation and strengthening the European Research Area
This pillar underpins the whole Horizon Europe programme. It encourages activities that build the research and innovation potential of EU countries with the lowest participation rates in the framework programme and implements tangible measures in support of strengthening the European Research Area.
2PE funding Guide
To find out more about Horizon Europe, consult the 2PE-Bretagne Guide to European funding: