Your Guide to EU Funding 2014-2020
A good Guide (clear, concise) to European Union funding programs. The Guide has been developed on behalf of the Greens/EFA Group, European Parliament. You can download the Guide by this link GuidetoEUFunding-2014-2020
See my services of Training, Supervision, Project Writing on Erasmus+
The European Union (EU) allocates considerable financial
resources to projects and actions that are related to EU
policies and their implementation. This money is used for investments
in a broad spectrum of areas, such as sustainable
economic development, decent work, research & innovation,
education, culture, health and environmental protection.
Whereas some funds are allocated to EU Member States,
where national or regional authorities implement them, other
funds are distributed and managed directly by the European
At the end of 2013, the European Parliament and the
Council of the European Union came to an agreement on the
budget for the EU for the next 7 years (2014-2020). A huge
part of this new budgetary plan, with a total amount of 960
billion €, is used for EU funding instruments, programmes
and initiatives. Parallel to the negotiations on the multiannual
budget 2014-2020, as well the EU’s investment programmes
and funding instruments have been redesigned.
In the last two years, the European Parliament and the
Member States reviewed, in cooperation with the European
Commission, the strategic outline of these programmes,
adapted them to current social, economic and environmental
challenges and set new thematic priorities for the upcoming
7 years of EU investments.The Greens/EFA group in the European
Parliament played an active role in the negotiations
of the Multiannual Financial Framework and the revision of
the EU funds for the period 2014-2020. We advocated for
more sustainable, integrative, environmental and climate
friendly, transparent and simplified EU funding programmes.
This year, the implementation of the new programmes
begins. We want to ensure that our achievements during the
negotiations on the new programme strategies do actually
deploy a change towards more Green EU investments on
the level of implementation. With this guide we seek to
provide local and regional actors, as well as young people,
user-friendly information on how to access EU funding
opportunities for your own projects and ideas.
This documents follows 3 key objectives:
- It gives our local and regional Green stakeholders, namely
local and regional councillors and non-governmental organisations
(NGOs), an insight into the functioning of the huge
variety of EU funds.
- It provides young people in the EU with information on
how they can directly benefit from Europe by taking part in
one of the numerous EU programmes.
- It offers guidance on how to set-up your own EU project.
a) How to read this Guide
Chapter 2 gives a brief overview of EU funding opportunities
adapted to specific target groups. Here you will find a summary
of the most important information on your eligibility for EU
funds, plus relevant programmes for your field of work.
Chapter 3 offers a step-by-step guide to your EU project.
This serves as a guide, from the very first considerations to
be made, to the important aspects of your project proposal
and budgetary planning.
Chapter 4 is written in the format of a reference book. It will
give you a comprehensive overview of EU funds for the
period 2014-2020 divided into thematic fields. Here you will
find brief explanations of the different EU programmes and
suggestions on where to find further information.
b) What are EU funds?
The EU funds can roughly be divided into three types:
structural and investment funds, programmes and initiatives
and third country funds. Whilst the first two types are allocated
internally within the EU, the latter particularly addresses
actions outside the EU. This guide addresses explicitly only
the first two types of funding – EU funds invested within the
EU. The types of financing from the EU budget can vary. EU
funds are mostly allocated through grants awarded on the
basis of calls for proposals, in which different actors compete
for the support of the EU. Two types of grants can be
distinguished: action grants for projects with a limited lifetime
during which proposed specific activities are implemented;
and operating grants providing financial support for the
regular work and activities of an organisation.
Furthermore, EU institutions award public contracts, which
are awarded through calls for tenders to buy services, goods
or works that ensure the operations of the EU institutions
and their programmes. Eventually, several other types of
financing by EU funds exists, such as direct subsidies or
indirect funding through intermediary bodies in the form of
loans, risk capital, seed funding, subsidies, etc.
Another aspect to differentiate between the EU funds is
their respective management structure. In some cases the
European Commission manages the funds itself, i.e. the
responsible department (Directorate General) or external
agency publishes calls for proposals that invite candidates
to present project proposals, selects projects, monitors the
implementation and evaluates the outcome.
In other cases, the implementation of the funds are
delegated to the EU’s Member States, which then designate
national or regional managing authorities. This is called
shared management, because the Commission only supervises
the implementation of funds, but the Member State
takes responsibility for the management. This is especially
the case for the European Structural and Investment Funds.
The calls for proposals are published by the national or
regional managing authorities on the basis of operational
programmes, which outline the investment strategy of each
fund or priority. This takes into consideration national or
regional needs and challenges.