PublISHED ON 01 June 2018

UpDATED ON 23 November 2018

Responsibilities under the EU framework programme Horizon 2020

The EU organises European research and innovation collaboration in the form of framework programmes. The current framework programme Horizon 2020 runs for the period 2014–2020. The Swedish Research Council works with research issues related to the framework programme in many different ways and assists the Government Offices with Sweden's involvement in Horizon 2020.

On this page we describe our work on international policy issues. Information about funding for researchers is available from the organisations we collaborate with. Some of our collaborations result in calls being issued. For these, you will find all the information you need here on the website.

We are responsible for parts of Sweden's commitment

The EU's eighth framework programme for research and innovation, Horizon 2020 (H2020) has three main areas of focus: Excellent Science, Industrial Leadership and Societal Challenges. These in turn are divided into a number of subsidiary areas. The Swedish Research Council has expert responsibility in Sweden for eight subsidiary areas and deputy expert responsibility for five subsidiary areas.

Expert responsibility means that employees from the Swedish Research Council are included as experts in programme committees. Each thematic area within Horizon 2020 has its own programme committee, which develops ideas and bases for work programmes. The work programmes then form the basis for future calls. In addition to the expert, a member from the Government Offices participates in the programme committee. Together, they represent Sweden. A Swedish reference group with stakeholders that include higher education institutions, public agencies, county councils, and companies provides support in the work.

The Swedish Research Council is also the primary National Contact Point (NCP) within three subsidiary areas of the framework programme, and the secondary NCP in seven subsidiary areas. Being a national contact point means being responsible for ensuring researchers in Sweden receive information and support in matters related to calls within the area of Horizon 2020 in question.

Our responsibility for the focus on Excellent Science

The focus on Excellent Science includes funding pioneering initiatives for researcher mobility and research infrastructure. We are responsible for four subsidiary areas:

European Research Council, ERC

The European Research Council (ERC), provides extensive and long-term funding for cutting-edge research within all scientific fields. In Sweden, the Swedish Research Council has expert responsibility for ERC, as well as NCP responsibility. Among things, as an NCP we inform about calls.

You can find information on calls within the ERC here (link to the Horizon 2020 page under Current).

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, MSCA

The subsidiary area Marie Skłodowska Curie Actions (MSCA), enables researchers to work in another country or within the private sector for a period of time. The aim is to promote researcher mobility between countries and fields. MSCA is aimed at researchers at all career stages and in all disciplines, but it is also aimed at companies, universities, research institutes, the public sector and research infrastructures.

Future and Emerging Technologies, FET

The subsidiary area Future and Emerging Technologies (FET), funds collaborative projects that may lead to completely new technology by combining advanced interdisciplinary research and groundbreaking engineering skills.

Research Infrastructure

Within the subsidiary area Research Infrastructure, researchers can apply for funding for various types of research infrastructure – facilities, laboratories, databases and registers – to use in their research.

Our responsibility for the focus on Industrial Leadership

The focus on Industrial Leadership aims to make Europe more attractive for investments in research and innovation, and to create jobs and growth through support for innovation in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). We have deputy expert responsibility and secondary NCP responsibility for the subsidiary areas:

  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Nanotechnology, Advanced Materials, Biotechnology, and Advanced Manufacturing and Processing.

We have deputy expert responsibility for the subsidiary area Space.

Our responsibility for the focus on Societal Challenges

Within the focus on Societal Challenges, the emphasis is on finding solutions to the major societal challenges facing the world. We have expert responsibility and deputy NCP responsibility for the subsidiary areas:

  • Health, Demographic Changes and Wellbeing
  • Europe in a Changing World – Inclusive, Innovative and Reflective Societies.

We have deputy expert responsibility for the subsidiary area of Safe, Clean and Efficient Energy

Next framework programme

In 2020, Horizon 2020 will be replaced by a new framework programme. How it is designed will be of great importance for Swedish researchers, and for the Swedish research and innovation system. The Swedish Research Council has drawn up a proposal for the Government and the European Commission with recommendations for the forthcoming framework programme.

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International secretariat

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National Contact Point, NCP

Being a national contact point within an area of Horizon 2020 (having NCP responsibility) means being responsible for ensuring researchers in Sweden receive information and support on issues related to calls within the area.


International secretariat


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