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Apply for ESC Research Grants

Under 36? Boost your career and apply for an ESC grant to conduct specialised or further cardiovascular research in a European centre of excellence.

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Get EU funding

Major opportunities to get your research project off the ground

ESC as partner in EU funded projects

The ESC is a consortium partner in several EU funded projects. If you are intending to request the ESC's involvement in your project, carefully consult the procedure to ensure you are in line with the ESC's requirements. You can also review current EU funded projects in which the ESC is a partner.

Why the EU provides funding for cardiovascular research

National health systems in the EU face common challenges: increasing cost of healthcare, ageing populations associated with a rise of chronic diseases – leading to growing demand for healthcare –, shortages and uneven distribution of health professionals, health inequalities and inequities in access to health services. Moreover, the economic crisis limited the financial resources available.

Therefore, health systems need to be effective, accessible and resilient and must adapt effectively to tackle these significant challenges. Innovative health solutions and investment are key to this process.

The European Commission makes direct financial contributions in the form of grants in support of projects or organisations which further the interests of the EU or contribute to the implementation of an EU programme or policy. Interested parties can apply by responding to calls for proposals.

Funding mechanisms

There are mainly two funding mechanisms: grants and tenders.

  1. The grants may be grants for projects, operating grants, direct grants with International organisations and grants to Member States authorities and bodies for co-financed actions (called joint actions). The type of funding for each action is set out each year in a work plan – with the aim to achieve goals as efficiently as possible with the full cooperation of programme stakeholders. Unless indicated otherwise (for instance tenders), the basic principle is joint funding: Commission grants cover a certain percentage of the overall costs.
  2. Contracts issued by EU institutions to buy in services, goods or works they need for their operations – like studies, training, conference organisation, IT equipment are awarded through calls for tender.

Find more information here:

Available funding instruments  - Call for proposals (grants)

Horizon 2020

Between 2014 and 2020, the EU will provide almost €80bn in funding for research, mainly through its flagship research programme Horizon 2020.  Horizon 2020 is the biggest ever EU research and innovation programme and places more emphasis than ever on making sure that Europe’s promising ideas get from the laboratory to the market.Horizon 2020 will provide resources to encourage innovative small firms, fund more blue-sky research, and bring together different fields of science and technology. In doing so, Horizon 2020 aims to solve some of society’s biggest challenges, from ageing populations to the need for clean energy, and keep Europe’s economy competitive over the long term.

More about horizon 2020 here

Public consultation: have your say on Horizon 2020

The European Commission has launched a public stakeholder consultation which will feed into the interim evaluation of Horizon 2020. This interim evaluation will help improve the functioning of Horizon 2020, and will also be an important element in preparations of a next EU research and innovation programme.

Access the PDF version of the online questionnaire which will help you prepare your answers.

Third EU Health Programme 2014-2020

An additional funding instrument is the ‘’third EU Health Programme 2014-2020’’.The Health Programme is about fostering health in Europe by encouraging cooperation between Member States to improve the health policies that benefit their citizens. The programme aims to support and complement Member States health initiatives

More information here

The Innovative Medicines Initiative

The Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) is Europe's largest public-private initiative aiming to speed up the development of better and safer medicines for patients.

IMI supports collaborative research projects and builds networks of industrial and academic experts in order to boost pharmaceutical innovation in Europe.

IMI is a joint undertaking between the European Union and the pharmaceutical industry association EFPIA.

More about IMI here 

The European Fund for Strategic Investment

Health project promoters, both from the public and the private sector, can benefit from the Investment Plan by getting financing from the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI), registering a project to reach potential investors worldwide through the European Investment Project Portal (EIPP), and making use of the advisory services of the European Investment Advisory Hub (EIAH).

EFSI will support investment projects mostly in the following areas, recognising the importance of infrastructure investments but also the role of innovation in health systems, research and medical education:

  • Medical research
  • Innovative products, services and delivery solutions (including by SMEs, mid-caps and start-ups)
  • New models of health infrastructure especially for primary and integrated forms of care
  • New technologies and e-health
  • Medical education and training

Learn more about EFSI