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Research and innovation

Seal of Excellence

What the Seal of Excellence is, how to receive and use it, funding opportunities, information for funding bodies and latest news.

What is the Seal of Excellence?

The Seal of Excellence is a quality label awarded by the Commission to proposals which have been assessed in a call for proposals under a Union instrument and are deemed to comply with the quality requirements of that Union instrument but could not be funded due to budgetary constraints. These projects are judged to deserve funding and might receive support from other Union or national sources of funding.

The Seal of Excellence certificate recognises the value of the proposal and helps other funding bodies take advantage of the high quality Commission evaluation process.

The Seal of Excellence certificate indicates basic information on the proposal, the call and the proposer. It demonstrates political commitment by displaying the signatures of the Commissioners. It is unique and safe. It is digitally sealed against fraud, as is the project proposal and evaluation summary report.

Under Horizon Europe, the EU's research and innovation funding programme until 2027, the quality and impact of the Seal of Excellence will be strengthen. The uptake of the Seal of Excellence in Structural Funds programmes will be further promoted in the context of reinforcing synergies between the R&I Framework programmes and European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

Seal of Excellence banner

Seal of Excellence is currently awarded to proposals that apply under

The Commission launched the Seal of Excellence initiative at the end of 2015 and the label could be first awarded to proposals which applied under Horizon 2020:

How to receive and use the Seal of Excellence

Receiving the Seal of Excellence

How seal holders can use the Seal of Excellence

How funding bodies can use the Seal of Excellence

Funding opportunities

Funding opportunities for Seal EIC Accelerator proposals

National/regional funding opportunities for Seal MSCA proposals

Information for funding bodies

Useful links for funding bodies

Useful links for Seal of Excellence holders


  • News article

Synergies guidance is out

Commission publishes the draft notice on synergies between Horizon Europe and ERDF programmes.