Upcoming Horizon Europe calls addressing the Green Deal

The upcoming calls in the Horizon Europe programme for 2023 and 2024 are not yet fully approved and are thus not available yet. But the Science|Business team has published some Horizon Europe draft work programmes for information and these can be used as a guideline for the topics to expect.

The unapproved drafts for the 2023-2024 work programmes are available on their website: https://sciencebusiness.net/framework-programmes/horizon-papers. The official release of the documents is close and by end of November, beginning of December they shall be available on the funding & tenders portal. Stakeholders need to get prepared and plan the proposal preparation phase as first deadlines are already in April 2023.

In relation to the Green Deal, we recommend in particular looking at:

  • Widening: Generally, the work programme includes two main components - I: Widening participation and spreading excellence, and II: Strengthening the ERA by reforming and enhancing the European Research and Innovation system. The first programme is targeted to tackle the innovation divide and support the less advanced countries in the European Union as well as associated countries (to which all Western Balkans belong). Some instruments are already well established or providing general support not related to the Green Agenda (Teaming, Twinning, European Excellence Initiative, Pathways to Synergies, Hop on Facility, Excellence hubs - which include special focus on Western Balkans, ERA Chairs, ERA Fellowships, ERA Talents). In the 2023/24 work programme, apart of the usual bottom-up twinning programme, a dedicated Twinning Green Deal is planned with overall 27 mio euro (estimating an EU contribution of between EUR 0.80 and 1.50 million per project). Topics need to be related to climate research, green technologies, renewable energy, sustainable mobility, biodiversity research, or sustainable use of natural resources (land, water, air). The ERA-part of the programme, focuses on some calls that might be used for experimentation and exchange of good practices etc. A dedicated initiative shall focus on "Research ethics for environmental and climate technologies"

 

  • Missions: the Green Deal topics are highly important for several EU missions and thus these calls are of the highest importance
    • Mission Adaptation to Climate Change (support at least 150 European regions, local authorities and communities to become climate resilient by 2030) will call for the testing and demonstration of transformative solutions increasing climate resilience of the agriculture and/or forestry sector, to protect critical infrastructure from climate change, mainstreaming nature based solutions and to build resilience towards health risks caused by the effects of climate change.
    • Mission 100 Climate-Neutral and Smart cities by 2030 aims to fund several co-designed smart systems and services for user-centred shared zero-emission mobility of people and freight in urban areas, positive clean energy district digital twins – from modelling to creating climate neutral cities, across the two missions also demonstration of climate mitigation and resilience solutions in support of the implementation of the Adaptation to Climate Change and Cities Missions, urban greening and re-naturing for urban regeneration, resilience and climate neutrality, as well as wider demonstration projects of climate mitigation and resilience solutions in support of the implementation of the Adaptation to Climate Change, Restore our Ocean and Waters by 2030 and A Soil Deal for Europe Missions
    • Mission A Soil Deal for Europe (100 living labs and lighthouses to lead the transition towards healthy soils by 2030) will open calls related to discovering the subsoil, soil pollution processes – modelling and inclusion in advanced digital decision-support tools, onsite digital technologies to monitor nutrients and chemical or biological stressors in soil and plants with relevance for food safety and nutrition, innovations to prevent and combat desertification, soil-friendly practices in horticulture, including alternative growing media, soils in spatial planning, back to earth: bringing communities and citizens closer to soil, co-creating solutions for soil health in Living Labs, carbon farming in living labs, etc. as well as some cross-mission calls on demonstration of an integrated approach to increasing landscape water retention capacity at regional scale, demonstration of approaches and solutions to address nutrient pollution in the landscape-river-sea system in the Mediterranean sea basin, etc.
    • Mission: Restore our Ocean and Waters by 2030 addresses objectives such as to protect and restore marine and freshwater ecosystems and biodiversity (including foci on marine habitats; the management of sediments in the Danube river-Black sea system, and addressing climate change and human activities threats to marine biodiversity in the Atlantic and Arctic sea basin; protection and restoration of the natural lake ecosystems and their biodiversity) and to support sustainable, carbon-neutral and circular Blue Economy (including innovative nature-inclusive concepts to reconcile offshore renewables with ocean protection, obstacles and opportunities for repurposing aged/unused offshore infrastructures) as well as initiatives related to Digital Ocean and Water Knowledge System, public mobilisation and engagement, dynamic investment ecosystem and lastly activities in relation to the integration of socio-ecological models into the Digital Twin Ocean and roadmapping towards the integration of inland waters into the Digital Twin Ocean. Lastly, a campaign for responsible consumption of products from the sea and dedicated support to the contribution of creative sectors to Mission Ocean and waters are planned to be supported. Additionally, environmentally sustainable and climate neutral health and care systems

 

  • Global Challenges and European Industrial Competitiveness (Pillar 2 of Horizon Europe)
    • Health: In the context of Cluster 1, the concept of "planetary health" which is focused on the interdependencies between human health and the state of earth’s complex natural systems and the "exposome" - the impact of the exposure to environmental factors (non-genetic) on health - are relevant for the Green Deal. For example, a call on the role of environmental pollution in non-communicable diseases and on interventions in city environments to reduce risk of non-communicable diseases can be expected.
    • Culture, creativity and inclusive society: aims to address the issues of the green deal in several calls such as indicatively those focusing on the climate imperative and its impact on democratic governance, multilevel governance in times of digital and climate transitions, advanced technologies for remote monitoring of heritage monuments and artefacts, cultural and creative industries for a
      sustainable climate transition, New European Bauhaus – Innovative solutions for greener and fairer ways of life through arts and culture, architecture and design for all. The green transition also plays an important role in topics such as the analysis of remote working arrangements and their economic, social and spatial effects and other transformation-focused calls towards sustainable economic policy paradigms or efficiency and effectiveness of investment in high-quality education and training, tackling European skills and labour shortages, addressing housing inequalities, strengthen economic fairness and resilience of active labour market policies and address high unemployment, minimise costs and maximise benefits of job creation and job destruction, social services: economic and social returns and value-added etc. Explicitly addressed is also tackling inequalities in the green and digital transitions. A call dedicated to the region is also included (although not related to the Green Deal): Political perspectives for the Eastern
      Neighbourhood and the Western Balkans.
    • In relation to Civil security for society, energy efficiency and environmental impact aspects of new security technologies (e.g. low environmental footprint, low emissions, circular economy aspects and/or self-sustained equipment) are desirable and disasters addressed include those caused by extreme climate events and impacts of climate change or prevention, detection, response and mitigation of chemical, biological and radiological threats to agricultural production, forestry and to food processing, distribution and consumption.
    • Digital, industry, space: This work programme includes a destination related to climate neutral, circular and digitised production, e.g. focusing on energy efficiency in process industries, industry transition to climate neutrality, sustainability and circularity, hubs for circularity (H4C) for near zero emissions regions applying industrial symbiosis and cooperative approach to heavy industrialized clusters and surrounding ecosystems, sustainable and efficient industrial water consumption: through energy and solute recovery, various solutions for circular economy e.g. in process industries, materials recirculation, etc., disruptive change in construction, optimisation of thermal energy flows, renewable hydrogen, turning CO2 emissions from the process industry to feedstock, hubs for circularity for industrialised urban peripheral areas,  bio-intelligent manufacturing industries, advanced (nano and bio-based) materials for sustainable agriculture. Several calls address raw Materials for EU open strategic autonomy and successful transition to a climate-neutral and circular economy, such as biodegradable polymers for sustainable packaging materials or technologies for extraction and processing of critical raw materials. Other calls address industrial leadership in AI, data and robotics boosting competitiveness and the green transition. The Processes4Planet partnership is an important player in the cooperation. The Western Balkans are explicitly addressed in the call Promoting EU standards globally (not related to the Green Deal though).
    • Climate, energy and mobility: The Green Deal is at the heart of this work programme, the latest draft published on the site has more than 520 pages packed with relevant calls related to the overall destinations: Climate sciences and responses for the transformation towards climate neutrality, Cross-sectoral solutions for the climate transition, Sustainable, secure and competitive energy supply, Efficient, sustainable and inclusive energy use, Clean and competitive solutions for all transport modes, Safe, Resilient Transport and Smart Mobility services for passengers and goods.
    • Food, bioeconomy, natural resources, agriculture and environment: Similarly to Cluster 5, also Cluster 6 has several topics directly related to the Green Deal. The drafts available has more than 580 pages and calls related to the overall destinations Biodiversity and ecosystem services, Fair, healthy and environment-friendly food systems from primary production to consumption, Circular economy and bioeconomy sectors, Clean environment and zero pollution, Land, ocean and water for climate action, Resilient, inclusive, healthy and green rural, coastal and urban communities, Innovative governance, environmental observations and digital solutions in support of the Green Deal. The Western Balkans are explicitly addressed for example in the call "Reinforcing science policy support with IPBES and IPCC for better interconnected biodiversity and climate policies".

 

  • Innovative Europe (Pillar 3 of Horizon Europe)
    • European Innovation Council: Several 2023 EIC Pathfinder Challenges could focus on aspects related to the Green Deal, e.g. "In-space solar power harvesting and novel propulsion approaches "Novel technologies for sustainable and inclusive built environment" will support projects that deliver new digital tools to support the fabrication and assembly of buildings including through the use of digital-physical twins achieving a reduction in embodied rather than operational carbon emissions. EIC Transition Challenges includes for example a topic on "Environmental Intelligence". "Energy storage", "New European Bauhaus: Digitisation for sustainable and inclusive built environment" and "Sustainable and resilient agriculture" are for example identified as an EIC Accelerator Challenge. Most other actions and prizes are not thematically driven, but for example the European Procurement Awards is planned to focus on "green energy transition".
    • The work programme on European Innovation Ecosystems includes two areas related to "Interconnected Innovation Systems" (CONNECT) contributing also to the EU priorities and challenges, such as climate action and the green (and digital) transformation (e.g. with a StartUp Europe focus on Energy, GreenTech, AgriTech, etc.) and a Partnership on Innovative SMEs (INNOVSMES).
    • The European Institute for Innovation and Technology (EIT) is another actor of high importance for Green Deal activities, in particular, the Knowledge and Innovation Communities related to the EIT Climate-KIC, EIT InnoEnergy and EIT Urban Mobility, but also others such as EIT Food, EIT Raw Materials, EIT Manufacturing, etc. who dedicate activities to activities related to the Green Deal.
       
  • Excellent Science (Pillar 1 of Horizon Europe)
    • Marie Sklodowska Curie Actions (MSCA): The actions support bottom-up and frontier/applied research contributing directly to the European Commission’s commitment to tackling climate and environmental-related challenges, thus in line with the European Green Deal, the United Nation’s 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, addressing principles of a so-called MSCA Green Charter, minimising the environmental footprint of their activities
    • European Research Council (ERC): is not policy driven but allows all bottom-up topics.
    • Research infrastructures: Research infrastructure services to support health research, accelerate the green and digital transformation, and advance frontier knowledge are included as well the development of tools, solutions, modules to
      enable R&I on the social aspects of the green transition as well as new digital twins for Destination Earth, etc.

Other programmes are also highlighted in the new Guide for EU Funding Programmes for the environment.

Country
OTHER
Geographical focus
  • European Union (EU 27)
Scientifc field / Thematic focus
  • Agricultural Sciences
  • Cross-thematic/Interdisciplinary
  • Engineering and Technology
  • General
  • Humanities
  • Medical and Health Sciences
  • Natural Sciences
  • Social Sciences

Entry created by Elke Dall on November 2, 2022
Modified on November 3, 2022