Sources for cooperative research and innovation projects


Horizon 2020


Horizon 2020 is the biggest EU Research and Innovation programme ever with nearly €80 billion of funding available from 2014 to 2020. It is addressed to all companies, universities, institutes in all EU countries and beyond. Horizon 2020 aims to couple research and innovation, financing projects from research to retail in numerous fields. Horizon 2020’s work programme is articulated into three main areas, called pillars, and into five transversal actions

Excellence Science is Horizon’s 2020 first pillar, aiming at reinforcing and extending the excellence of the Union’s science base. The second is Industrial Leadership  focusing on the development of key enabling technologies that will underpin tomorrow's businesses and help innovative European SMEs to grow into world-leading companies. The later pillar is Societal Challenges, addressing major concerns shared by citizens in Europe and elsewhere.

The five transversal actions are: European Institutes of Innovation and Technology (EIT), promoting and integrating higher education, research and innovation; Spreading Excellence Science and Widening Participation, financing twinning and networking measure; Science with and for Society, focusing on building up effective cooperation between science and society, Euratom, which is a complementary research programme for nuclear research and training and finally the Joint Research Center.

By coupling research and innovation, Horizon 2020 is helping to achieve a smart, sustainable and inclusive growth and jobs. Supporting excellent science, industrial leadership and tackling societal challenges it aims to foster the production of world-class science, to promote innovation without barriers and to stimulate the cooperation between the public and private sectors for delivering innovation.


The European Union recognises the importance of international cooperation in the fields of science and technology. This is why international cooperation is an important cross-cutting priority of Horizon 2020. The programme is fully open to international participants and it promotes targeted actions that are focused on the EU’s strategic priorities.

International cooperation activities focus on research in areas of common interest and mutual benefit in order to strengthen the Union’s attractiveness in research and innovation and in order to tackle societal challenges. The program is implemented distinguishing between three country groupings:

• Industrialised and emerging economies, which will only receive funding under specific conditions;

• Enlargement and neighbourhood countries, that are eligible for automatic funding;

• Developing countries, also eligible for automatic funding.


The EU-India Agreement on scientific and technological cooperation concluded in 2001 and renewed in 2010, is the cornerstone of the cooperation in the fields of research and innovation between India and the EU. In this framework a large-scale research and innovation activities have been implemented and more are encouraged.

Horizon 2020 is broadly open to Indian participation, whether in classical collaborative projects, in mobility support actions or in European Research Council's grants. As India is one of the “Industrialised countries and emerging economies” the cooperation with the EU will focus on jointly tackle global challenges and on the development of enabling technologies.

Furthermore India will participate to the programme under the same conditions and financial rules for participation as their peers from other emerging economies and industrialised countries. This means that in most cases, Indian scientists will not be automatically funded as was the case in FP7 and that they will need to cover their participation costs in Horizon 2020 projects with their own funds.

However, Indian participants will still be eligible as members of consortia and will be able to participate with other sources of funding or under specific conditions with EU funding.

In April 2016, the European Commission and the Indian Department of Biotechnology announced a new co-founding mechanism for research and innovation cooperation. Under this co-funding mechanism (CFM), a maximum of three crore rupees (30,000,000) per  project   will   be   made   available by   DBT to   successful Indian   participants in  joint collaborative projects with European partners under Horizon 2020.

Further Information:

In August 2016, the European Commission and the Indian Department of Science and Technology announced a new co-founding mechanism for research and innovation cooperation. Under this co-funding mechanism (CFM), a maximum of rupees 1.0 Crore (₹1,00,00,000/-) per  project will be made available by DST to successful Indian participants in joint collaborative projects with European partners under Horizon 2020.

Further information:

Additionally, Indian teams can be funded under specific calls requiring their participation or funding granted for a specific project involvement. As reported in the EU document Funding of applicants from non-EU countries and International Organisations, stating that:

“Applicants from other non-EU countries may be granted funding if:

  • Funding is provided for in a bilateral scientific/technological agreement or similar arrangement between the EU and the country where the applicant is based.
  • The call for proposals clearly states that applicants based in such countries are eligible for funding.
  • Their participation is deemed essential for carrying out the action by the Commission or the relevant funding body because it provides:
    • outstanding competence/expertise
    • access to research infrastructure
    • access to particular geographical environments
    • access to data.

For more information about Horizon 2020 please click here.


This project has received funding from the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological
development and demonstration.

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