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How EU funding works

EU policies are implemented through a wide range of programmes and funds which provide financial support to hundreds of thousands of beneficiaries such as local and regional authorities, NGOs and businesses. These programmes are managed by the European Commission, sometimes in partnership with national and regional authorities and agencies.

European funding programmes run on a seven-year cycle, and the European Commission manages funding programmes on the basis of Annual Work Programmes, in which they specify their funding priorities for the following year.

The Work Programmes provides information on the funding programmes such as the specific area of activity, objectives, indicative timetable, available budget and any conditions attached to the funding. Consulting these work programmes will enable you to identify the fields which interest you.

Following publication of their Annual Work Programme, the European Commission’s Directorates (DGs) will launch calls for proposals – or invitations to apply for funding - on their websites.

Organisations interested in applying for a project grant must respond to these calls for proposals, which set out the detailed requirements that projects must satisfy in order to be eligible for funding. These will include, for example, the eligibility of applicant organisations and their partners, match-funding requirements and work programme priorities.

     European funding is available for a broad range of projects covering areas such as:

          •  Equality and rights
          •  Regional and urban development
          •  Employment and social inclusion
          •  Education and youth
          •  Environment and climate change

     You can find information on the funding programmes available in 2014-2020 together with open calls for proposals in the

      European Funding section of our website.