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European Research Executive Agency

Horizon Europe - How to apply

Steps for applying

This page explains the application process for most collaborative projects funded under Horizon Europe. To apply, you need to follow these steps:  

  1. The European Commission publishes calls for proposals based on the Horizon Europe work programmes. The calls for proposals are grouped by subject areas – so-called “destinations”. The destinations are based on the EU’s policy priorities and the desired impact of the EU’s funding. 

    You can find all calls for proposals, the specific call topics, the deadlines and application forms on the Funding and tenders portal.

    REA organises Information Days to present the calls for proposals and help applicants in preparing successful proposals. Check the events section for upcoming Information Days or recordings and presentations of previous Information Days. 
  2. For most calls for proposals you must apply as a team of at least 3 partner organisations from different countries.

    To apply, you must create a profile in the Funding & tenders portal. Then you select the call for proposal you want to apply for and use the online form on that page to build and submit your proposal before the deadline.
  3. Some calls for proposals follow a 2-stage application procedure: You first submit a concept note. If your concept is successful, you draft and submit the full project proposal.
  4. After the call for applications for funding has closed, the process moves to the evaluation phase. Here, REA organises panels of experts in line with the established procedures in Horizon Europe. The experts are independent specialists from the relevant field who peer-review and evaluate each proposal against a set of pre-defined criteria by the European Commission. Once consensus has been achieved within the panels and the evaluation has been reviewed, REA informs the successful applicants and proposes funding in line with the overall available budget. The evaluation phase lasts up to 5 months.
  5. Once the successful proposals are selected, we draw up a grant agreement with the project partners (‘the beneficiaries’). The grant agreement specifies the project’s research and innovation activities, duration and budget, the EU's contribution, all rights and obligations and more.

    Generally, the parties sign the grant agreement within 3 months.

Types of projects

Horizon Europe funds different types of collaborative projects including, for example: 

  • Research and innovation action (RIA) that establishes new knowledge or explores a new or improved technology, product, process, service or solution. The EU funding covers up to 100% of the project costs. 
  • Innovation action (IA) that produces plans or designs for new or improved products, processes or services including prototyping, testing, demonstrating, piloting, large-scale product validation and market replication. The EU funding covers up to 70% of the project costs. 
  • Coordination and support action (CSA) that improve cooperation among EU and associated countries to strengthen the European Research Area including, for example, standardisation, dissemination, awareness-raising, communication and networking activities, policy dialogues, mutual learning or studies. The EU funding covers up to 100% of the project costs. 
  • Programme co-fund action (COFUND) that provides multi-annual co-funding for European partnerships bringing together public and private partners. The EU funding covers between 30 and 70% of the project costs. 

The Horizon Europe programme guide provides an overview of the project types that can be funded. Please consult the call topic page on the Funding & tenders portal for a complete explanation of the type of activity that will be funded and the conditions for applying.  

You can also find inspiration from previously funded projects listed in the CORDIS database.