Northumbria Research Support

Horizon 2020 explained

Hopefully, you are all aware of the European Commission’s new name for the successor to Framework Programme 7, following last year’s competition to find a new name.  The EC wanted a name which the general public would automatically recognise as being Europe’s flagship programme for funding European research.

Horizon 2020 will run from 2014 to 2020.  Expectations are high, with promises of simplified rules, and a budget increase of up to 46% on FP7.

Horizon 2020 is still at draft stage, but is expected to involve three “pillars”:

1. Excellent Science – which includes: European Research Council; Future and Emerging Technologies; Marie Curie Actions, and Research Infrastructures.

2. Industrial Leadership – with 3 sub-programmes:

  • Key enabling and industrial technologies: information and communication technologies; nanotechnologies; advanced materials; biotechnology; advanced manufacturing and processing; space and support for cross-cutting actions;
  • Access to risk finance;
  • Support to SMEs with high-growth potential.


3. Societal Challenges – six of them:

  • Health, demographic change and well-being;
  • Food security, sustainable agriculture, marine and maritime research and the bio-based economy;
  • Secure, clean and efficient energy;
  • Smart, green and integrated transport;
  • Climate action, resource efficiency and raw materials;
  • Inclusive, innovative and secure societies.

So, it’s a large programme, but Northumbria staff can find a short summary on the externally-funded projects eLearning Portal at:



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