A Beginner’s Guide to EU Funding

Kristalina-GeorgievaSmall companies (SMEs), non-governmental organisations (NGOs), young people, researchers, farmers, public bodies and other categories can benefit from this guide.

With references to websites about EU funding opportunities, available for the period 2014-2020, this guide provides basic information, especially:

  • how & where to apply
  • other general rules (eligibility, etc.).


If you have been thinking about applying for EU funding, you have come to the right place! This guide can help you get started if you have not applied for EU funding before, but it will also be useful if you do have prior experience of our programmes.

The new EU budget, or multiannual financial framework, runs from 2014 to 2020. Our new generation of EU programmes draw on past successes but are improved and streamlined. You will find lots of emphasis on key areas for the EU’s future: research and innovation, transport, energy, job opportunities for the younger generation and improving the competitiveness of European businesses, to name just a few. Our goal is clear: to boost jobs and growth and create a better quality of life in Europe.

Another thing we have focused on is cutting red tape. The EU has simplified its financial rules for Europe’s businesses, towns, regions, scientists and NGOs. Access to EU funding should now be easier than ever before, and we are constantly working to improve further. We want you to be able to spend your time doing productive work, not filling in forms.

This publication is full of information targeted at you and your funding needs. It provides links to further detailed information about specific opportunities. It also includes examples and practical tips.

I hope the guide will provide you with useful advice so that you can prepare your application for EU funding. The more requests there are, the better the quality of projects financed by the EU and the greater the added value of the EU budget. This is what we want — a budget that produces great results that serve our people. I wish you every success. Everybody has a chance. I would be delighted if this publication helped you to take the first step towards a successful European project.

Kristalina Georgieva, European Commission Vice-President for Budget and Human Resources



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