Approaching the new European Union MFF

Launch of the EIC and Erasmus+ Sport Online Infoday

We are slowly getting to the heart of the new Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF) with the release of the first Work Programs.

On the 18 and 19 March we witnessed the launch ceremony of the European Innovation Council (EIC), a new funding program under Horizon Europe with a budget of €10B. It represents the most ambitious innovation initiative adopted by the EU and aims at identifying and supporting breakthrough technologies and game changing innovations to create new markets and scale up internationally.  The funding and support is organised into three main funding schemes: the EIC Pathfinder for advanced research to develop the scientific basis to underpin breakthrough technologies; the EIC Transition to validate technologies and develop business plans for specific applications; and the EIC Accelerator to support companies (SMEs, start-ups, spin-outs and in exceptional cases small mid-caps) to bring their innovations to market and scale up. In each case, the direct financial support to innovators is augmented with access to a range of Business Acceleration Services.

With its Pathfinder programme the EIC supports ideas for radically new technologies. It welcomes the high-risk / high gain and interdisciplinary cutting-edge science collaborations that underpin technological breakthroughs. Applicants participating in EIC Pathfinder projects are typically visionary scientists, entrepreneurial researchers and, research organisations, start-ups, high-tech SMEs and industrial stakeholders interested in technological research and innovation. Projects typically involve consortia of researchers and other partners from at least three different countries, but there are also opportunities for individual teams and small consortia. Grants of up to 3 to 4 million euro support early-stage development of future technologies, however, pathfinder projects can also receive additional funding for testing the innovation potential of their research outputs.

EIC Transition funds innovation activities that go beyond the experimental proof of principle in laboratory to supports both:

  • the maturation and validation of your novel technology in the lab and in relevant application environments
  • the development of a business case and (business) model towards the innovation’s future commercialisation.

Grants of up to €2.5million and more are available to validate and demonstrate technology in application-relevant environment and develop market readiness.

On March 23-24, an “Online Infoday” on Erasmus+ Sport has been organized by the European Commission and the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA).

The EIC Accelerator supports individual Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), in particular Startups and spinout companies to develop and scaleup game-changing innovations. In some cases small mid-caps (up to 500 employees) are supported.

The EIC Accelerator provides substantial financial support with:

  • grant funding (non-dilutive) of up to €2.5 million for innovation development costs,
  • investments (direct equity investments) of up to €15 million managed by the EIC Fund for scale up and other relevant costs.

In addition, EIC selected companies receive coaching, mentoring, access to investors and corporates, and many other opportunities as part of the EIC community.

The EIC welcomes applications from innovators in all EU Member States and countries associated to the Horizon Europe Programme. It particularly welcomes applications from startups and SMEs with female CEOs.

On the 23 and 24 March The European Commission and the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA) organised the Online Erasmus+ Sport Info Day to inform potential applicants about the political context, future programme, simplification and funding opportunities in 2021.

Erasmus+ is the EU’s programme to support education, training, youth and sport in Europe. It has an estimated budget of €26.2 billion. This is nearly double the funding compared to its predecessor programme (2014-2020). The 2021-2027 programme places a strong focus on social inclusion, the green and digital transitions, and promoting young people’s participation in democratic life. It supports priorities and activities set out in the European Education Area, Digital Education Action Plan and the European Skills Agenda. The programme also supports the European Pillar of Social Rights implements the EU Youth Strategy 2019-2027 develops the European dimension in sport.

Erasmus+ is open to many individuals and organisations, although eligibility varies from one action to another and from one country to another.

Individuals can take part in many of the opportunities funded by Erasmus+, although most will have to do so through an organisation taking part in the programme. The eligibility of individuals and organisations depends on the country in which they are based.

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