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Research and innovation

The application process

Each call for proposals/projects has its own criteria and requirements. Your chosen call will guide you through the application process.

What follows is a generic description of the steps to applying for funds directly managed by the European Commission.

Funding procedures can have 1 or 2 stages

Depending on the technical nature of the field, the budget available and the expected number of proposals, the application procedure can involve one stage or two.

Under the 1-stage procedure, you will submit a full application at the outset of the process. Under the 2-stage procedure, you must first submit an initial summary proposal. If your proposal is shortlisted, you will be invited to submit a full application in the second phase.

Once you have identified a relevant call, read its guidelines carefully. Be sure to check in its criteria and requirements whether you are eligible before going further.


Before preparing your proposal, always consult the call guidelines to ensure that you are eligible. Specific criteria are set out in each funding programme and individual call.


Before submitting a proposal, you might need to register your organisation with the Commission. The call guidelines will specify whether and how you need to do so.

Find partners or apply as an individual

Most funding opportunities are collaborative projects. However, you can apply for a funding grant as an individual researcher, team or organisation at the European Research Council (ERC) and Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions (MSCA).

Find a partner

Prepare and submit your proposal

Preparing a proposal is a time-consuming process! Make sure you give yourself enough time to prepare your proposal before the deadline specified in the call.

All the documents and templates you will need to use will be listed in the guidelines for your chosen call. Be sure to follow these guidelines closely. If you fail to do so, the Commission might disqualify your proposal as inadmissible.


To be considered, your application must

  • be submitted on time - before the closing date specified in the call - through the electronic submission system
  • be complete – accompanied by the relevant administrative forms, proposal description and any supporting documents specified in the call
  • be concise  - the proposal template will specify a maximum number of pages