Horizon 2020

What is Horizon 2020? 


Horizon 2020 is the European Union’s new research programme, which will succeed FP7 in 2014. Horizon 2020 is the financial instrument implementing the Innovation Union, a Europe 2020 flagship initiative aimed at securing Europe's global competitiveness. 
Running from 2014 to 2020 with an €80 billion budget, the EU’s new programme for research and innovation is part of the drive to create new growth and jobs in Europe. Horizon 2020 will tackle societal challenges by helping to bridge the gap between research and the market by, for example, helping innovative enterprise to develop their technological breakthroughs into viable products with real commercial potential.  
This market-driven approach will include creating partnerships with the private sector and Member States to bring together the resources needed. Horizon 2020 will be complemented by further measures to complete and further develop the European Research Area by 2014. These measures will aim at breaking down barriers to create a genuine single market for knowledge, research and innovation. 


Horizon 2020, the EU’s largest Research and Innovation programme, has three key pillars, excellent science, industrial leadership and societal challenges.  For general information and further details about each of these pillars, visit the main webpage of Horizon 2020.

The participant portal of this website offers an online manual to Horizon 2020, which can be accessed here. The manual’s ‘how to participate’ section addresses all practical questions,  such as how to find suitable calls, how to find project partners, and offers a step-by-step guide from creating a user account to submitting project proposals.

To download the full work programme, click here.

For a list of currently active calls in Horizon 2020, click here.

Horizon 2020’s societal challenges advocate collaboration between different fields and disciplines. A list of these societal challenges is available here.

Challenge 6, ‘Europe in a changing world: Inclusive, innovative and reflective societies’ invites proposals on a variety of topics, including social exclusion and inequality, memories and cultural heritage, and the EU as a global actor. Further details may be found here.

Supporting the European Commission’s vision of cooperation between various disciplines, the Irish Research Council is encouraging Humanities and Social Sciences researchers to consider the opportunities Horizon 2020 holds beyond ‘challenge 6’ and find partners and submit proposals for a number of challenges. To facilitate the realization of this potential, the Irish Research Council and its partners are organizing a series of workshops early next year (see leaflet below). 

Useful Links

Irish Marie Curie Office

For helpful suggestions when expanding an existing or building a new research network for Horizon 2020, visit the researchers’ database of Net4Society and the discussions forum on the official LinkedIn page of Horizon 2020.

Similarly, researchers may also wish to join the discussions forum of Horizon 2020’s Social Sciences and Humanities subgroup.