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European Research Executive Agency
News article15 May 2024European Research Executive Agency2 min read

Pathways to Synergies: new projects bridging the gap between local and EU funding

The European Commission invests €20 million in new projects under the Pathways to Synergies action, with the goal of setting up interfaces between different funding systems and supporting cross-border collaboration.

© European Union, 2024

Pathways to synergies is a new funding opportunity, part of the Horizon Europe: Widening participation and spreading excellence funding sub-programme. The objectives of this action are to support the integration of different funding systems and overcome barriers between regional and European approaches. The main goal is to foster collaboration across borders and prepare regional funding recipients to participate in Horizon Europe calls.

The Pathways to synergies pilot call for proposals (HORIZON-WIDERA-2023-ACCESS-04) closed on 28 September 2023. It received 33 eligible proposals, of which 16 were selected for funding. Some projects already signed their Grant Agreements, with the rest of the signatures following in May 2024. The successful applicants aim to start their activity by the end of this year. 

11 of the selected projects explore upstream synergies between different European funding programs, focusing on human resources development and internationalization. The other 5 projects will work on downstream synergies between European funding opportunities, concentrating on advancement and commercialization of research results.

The overall expected outcome is improved coordination and synergy between various funding instruments, including Horizon Europe, Horizon 2020, European Fund for Regional Development, the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance, Resilience and Recovery Fund, and INTERREG. This will lead to increased competitiveness and innovation capacity in Widening countries, accelerated knowledge transfer and innovation cycles for beneficiaries, and strengthened innovation capacity in less R&I performing regions.

Project titleAcronym
Pan-European Network for Neuroscience Research Infrastructure and Strengthening of Support capacitiesPANERIS
Widening Synergies for Novel Enzymes DevelopmentWIDEnzymes
6th Sense Asset Valorisation Action6SAVA 
Planning a Digital Twin for Greener Road InfrastructurePATTERN
CROSSPATHS: Highway to Horizon Europe by pulling ERDF investments out of isolation through a tailored sequence of synergiesCROSSPATHS
Upstream Synergies to Overcome Locked-in Effects in Widening Regions and Broaden Internationalization Pathways for Sustainable Innovation and Competitive Grant ApplicationsMILESTONE 
Advanced Synergies for Pilot Demonstration Towards Industrial Innovation in Widening CountriesDemosAxia
REMORA - Small fishes in a big pondREMORA
TRIAD: Enhancing Synergism on Telomere Function in Health and DiseaseTRIAD 
Enhancing Research and Innovation Synergies for Schools of Economics and BusinessRIS4SEB
Creating synergies in Widening countries on the topic of low-voltage grid managementSynGRID
Central European Platform for Plasma-Enabled Surface EngineeringCOLOSSE   
Synergy for Healthy LongevitySynHealth
Empowering participation and accelerating synergies in Widening countries with a focus on Green & Digital TransitionTWIN SYNERGIES
Widen performance in research and innovation capacity and competence Across EUWide AcrossEU
Mobilizing Advanced Partnerships for Digital Innovation and TransformationMAPIT 

More about the Widening funding opportunities

In line with the ERA (European Research Area) policy objectives, the Widening sub-programme is providing funding for projects that enhance the research and innovation capabilities of countries with lower performance.

Another Widening Participation funding opportunity currently open to receive proposals is ERA Talents. The deadline to submit proposals is 26 September 2024.


Publication date
15 May 2024
European Research Executive Agency