Horizon 2020

All you need to develop and manage your Horizon 2020 project.

Horizon 2020 – the largest EU Research Framework Programme

Horizon 2020 (H2020) is the multiannual EU funding programme aimed to support and encourage research projects during the period from 2014 to 2020. It is the largest Research and Innovation Framework Programme in the history of the EU with a budget of almost €80 billion.

H2020 is a single programme that covers three initiatives – the 7th Research Framework Programme (FF7), the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP), the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT).

Horizon 2020 – Unique European Programme

Goals and ambitions of H2020

H2020 supports financially the Innovation Union, a Europe 2020 flagship initiative focused on ensuring Europe’s global competitiveness. The primary goal of H2020 is to strengthen the EU’s position as a world leader in science, innovation, and technology, and consequently help Europe become more attractive for research and innovation investment.

As European Commission claims H2020 is set out to:

  • secure excellent Europe’s contribution to world science;
  • help European SMEs to become large companies with world leadership;
  • facilitate the collaboration of the public and private sectors in finding solutions to major challenges in Europe.

Three key priorities of H2020

Research and innovation play an important role in driving economy and investing in the future. By coupling research and innovation, H2020 is promoting long term and comprehensive economic performance. The programme highlights three central work areas that create fine framework conditions for the European development:

  • Excellent science – supporting the best scientists in frontier research, providing them with the newest technologies and best infrastructure.
  • Industrial leadership – enabling new industrial technologies which drive innovations, strengthening the role of innovative SMEs.
  • Societal challenges – creating better societal and ecological environment by gathering knowledge and resources from various fields.

Work programmes of H2020

Apart from the primary programmes aimed to support excellent science and industrial leadership in Europe, and those coping with the EU challenges, H2020 addresses some other significant initiatives:

  • Science with and for society, the initiative is intended to establish efficient connection between science and society, raise interest in science and innovation, and speed up further research and innovation activities by bringing together scientific excellence and social awareness.
  • Spreading excellence and widening participation, the initiative aims to bridge the innovation gap between EU states by mentoring and networking with so-called Widening EU countries, thus to ensure that the benefits of an innovative economy are widespread throughout the EU.


Horizon 2020 is a highly successful programme going straightforward to achieving its main goals: supporting excellent science, promoting industrial leadership, and providing solutions to the societal challenges.

Here is a short overview of the programme’s main achievements after the first three years of its implementation (2014 – 2016).

Research and innovation in Europe continues to be on point and relevant:

  • In total, 115,235 eligible proposals were submitted under Horizon 2020, with a total EU financial contribution of €182.4 billion.
  • The overall success rate of eligible full proposals, half of which were evaluated as high quality by independent experts, is 12.6%.
  • A total of 13,903 grant agreements were signed with the EU contribution of €24.8 billion.

Continuing efforts to simplify the funding process in Horizon 2020 are paying of:

  • Almost 91% of grant agreements were signed within the set timeframe of eight months.
  • It is now 192.5 days from a proposal being submitted to the grant being awarded, compared to 303 days in FP7 (Seventh Research Framework Programme), the previous EU funding programme.

Abound 54% of applicants in Horizon 2020 are newcomers, which hadn’t participated in FP7.

The share of funding provided to SMEs exceeded the target of 20%.

Horizon Europe – the new EU Research Framework Programme

H2020 ends 31 December 2020, and then the next EU Research and Innovation Framework Programme, Horizon Europe, will get off the ground. The new EU funding programme will run from 2021 to 2027 with an expected budget of €100 billion. Horizon Europe is supposed to become the largest European collaborative multinational research and innovation investment ever.

One central tool – EMDESK for successful collaboration in H2020

At EMDESK we closely follow the developments of H2020 and constantly adapt our platform to keep offering the best possible support to European research consortia.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are the costs for EMDESK eligible for reimbursement under Horizon Europe and H2020?

Yes, EMDESK is reimbursable in Horizon Europe and H2020 (as Other Direct Costs or overhead fees).

What Horizon Europe and Horizon 2020 templates are available on EMDESK?

Research & Innovation Actions, Innovation Action, Coordination & Support Action, Pathfinder, EIC Accelerator, European Research Area Networks, Pre-Commercial Procurement, and Public Procurement of Innovative Solutions. We also have a standard project template for non specialised project management.

Can I use EMDESK for Horizon Europe projects?

Yes, EMDESK is designed to help you plan and execute a Horizon Europe project. During project creation just choose the right Horizon Europe template.

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