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Research and innovation

European Innovation Ecosystems

Policy, strategy, how to apply and work programmes.

Policy and strategy

European Innovation Ecosystems (EIE) will act in complement and synergy with the European Innovation Council (EIC) and European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) and innovative activities across Horizon Europe and other EU funding programmes to improve the overall ecosystem for innovation in Europe.

The EU aims to create more connected and efficient innovation ecosystems to support the scaling of companies, encourage innovation and stimulate cooperation among national, regional and local innovation actors.

It will contribute to all 4 key strategic orientations of the Horizon Europe strategic plan.

Areas of intervention

  • builds interconnected, inclusive innovation ecosystems across Europe by drawing on the existing strengths of national, regional and local ecosystems and pulling in new, less well-represented actors and territories to set, undertake, and achieve collective ambitions towards challenges for the benefit of society, including the green, digital, and social transitions
  • reinforces network connectivity within and between innovation ecosystems to accelerate sustainable business growth with high societal value
  • supports the European Partnership for Innovative SMEs (Eurostars 3)
  • complements the European Regional Development Fund support for innovation ecosystems and interregional partnerships around smart specialisation topics

Apply for funding

All funding information and details on how to apply are on the Funding and Tenders portal.

Work programme

Funding opportunities under Horizon Europe are set out in multiannual work programmes, which cover the large majority of support available.

2023 - 24

Delovni program Komisije16 november 2022
Horizon Europe Work programme (2023-24) - European Innovation Ecosystems (draft)

This draft has not been adopted or endorsed by the European Commission. Any views expressed are the views of the Commission services and may not in any circumstances be regarded as stating an official position of the Commission.
This draft is made public before the adoption of the work programme to provide potential participants with the currently expected main lines of this work programme. Only the adopted work programme will have legal value.
The adoption of the work programme will be announced on the Horizon Europe website and on the Funding and Tenders Portal.
Information and topic descriptions indicated in this draft may not appear in the final work programme; and likewise, new elements may be introduced at a later stage. Any information disclosed by any other party shall not be construed as having been endorsed by or affiliated to the Commission.
The Commission expressly disclaims liability for any future changes of the content of this document.

(963.81 KB - PDF)

2021 - 22

European Innovation Ecosystems work programme


Pillar III: Innovative Europe
(344.31 KB - HTML)