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News article29 June 20213 min read

Horizon Europe Work Programme 2021-2022 adopted

On 15 June, the Commission has adopted the Horizon Europe Work Programme 2021-2022 for Cluster 4 - Digital, Industry and Space. Three years of hard work resulted in programming close to €520 Million for Research and Innovation in 2021 and 2022.


The budget will serve the 2016 Space Strategy objectives, particularly focused on competitiveness and access to space. It will also support the R&I for new EU Space programme components: Galileo/EGNOS, Copernicus, Space Situational Awareness (SSA) and secures governmental communications (GOVSATCOM), as well as new research and innovation initiatives such as Cassini, an ecosystem to support entrepreneurship, in particular for SMEs and startups, and Quantum Technologies.

The Digital, Industry and Space work programme for 2021-2022 is now available for download and the first Horizon Europe calls for proposals are now open on the EU Funding and Tenders Portal.


What is Horizon Europe?

Horizon Europe is the next European Funding Framework Programme following on from its predecessor Horizon 2020. It will run for seven years from 2021 to 2027 and the total budget set for the programme is €95.5 billion.

It tackles climate change, helps to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals and boosts the EU’s competitiveness and growth.

The programme facilitates collaboration and strengthens the impact of research and innovation in developing, supporting and implementing EU policies while tackling global challenges. It supports creating and better dispersing of excellent knowledge and technologies.

It creates jobs, fully engages the EU’s talent pool, boosts economic growth, promotes industrial competitiveness and optimises investment impact within a strengthened European Research Area.

Legal entities from the EU and associated countries can participate.


New elements in Horizon Europe

European Innovation Council: Support for innovations with potential breakthrough and disruptive nature with scale-up potential that may be too risky for private investors. This is 70% of the budget earmarked for SMEs.

Missions: Sets of measures to achieve bold, inspirational and measurable goals within a set timeframe. There are five main mission areas as part of Horizon Europe.

Open science policy: Mandatory open access to publications and open science principles are applied throughout the programme Factsheet: Open science in Horizon Europe

New approach to partnerships: Objective-driven and more ambitious partnerships with industry in support of EU policy objectives

Presentation outlining Horizon Europe in 23 languages

How the Horizon Europe programme was developed

International cooperation in the programme


Cluster 4: Digital, Industry and Space

There are six Clusters under Pillar 2: Global Challenges and European Industrial Competitiveness and Digital, Industry and Space is Cluster 4.

The overarching vision behind the proposed investments under Cluster 4 is that of Europe shaping competitive and trusted technologies for a European industry with global leadership in key areas, enabling production and consumption to respect the boundaries of our planet, and maximising the benefits for all parts of society in the variety of social, economic and territorial contexts in Europe.

This will build a competitive, digital, low-carbon and circular industry, ensure sustainable supply of raw materials, develop advanced materials and provide the basis for advances and innovation in global challenges to society.

The expected impacts of this cluster are contained in the Horizon Europe strategic plan.


Areas of intervention

  • manufacturing technologies
  • key digital technologies including quantum technologies
  • emerging enabling technologies
  • advanced materials
  • artificial intelligence and robotics
  • next generation internet
  • advanced computing and Big Data
  • circular industries
  • low carbon and clean industries
  • space including earth observation


Apply for funding

Find the full list of open calls for 2021-2027, funding information and details on how to apply on the Funding and Tenders portal.


Horizon Europe Info Days 2021

Following the policy-related discussions during the European Research and Innovation Days 2021 (23 & 24 June), the 10-day event of Horizon Europe Info Days will give prospective applicants and other stakeholders of EU research and innovation the opportunity to get information and ask questions about main funding instruments, processes of Horizon Europe and what is new. 

The info days for Cluster 4: Digital, Industry and Space aim to inform (potential) applicants about topics included in the Cluster’s work programme of 2021. These Info days are open for participation without prior registration.



Publication date
29 June 2021