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Horizon Europe – Transversal Pillar – Widening participation and spreading excellency – 2021-2027

Grants to promote the development of R&I capacities in eligible countries, to strengthen the European Research Area.


3.4 billion euro


All beneficiaries

Type of financing

Grant – Co-financing

3.4 billion euro
All beneficiaries
Type de financement​
Grant – Co-financing
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This pillar aims to promote the participation of “less performing” EU member states and associated countries in R&I programmes through targeted calls of proposals.


WIDENING (Widening Participation and Spreading Excellence):

  • To strengthen or build the R&I capacities of every EU countries and regions
  • To support the free flow of knowledge by attracting top talent to eligible countries and regions and reversing brain drain into brain gain

ERA (Reforming and Enhancing the European R&I system):

  • Prioritize investments and reforms in R&I
  • Improve access to excellence across the EU and strengthen R&I systems
  • Translate R&I results into the economy to achieve the objectives of the dual transition, boost the resilience and competitiveness of our economies and societies
  • Deepen the ERA to advance the free circulation of knowledge and ensure an efficient, equitable and modern R&I system


  • To create new centers of excellence or improving existing centers in Widening countries/regions
  • To support the creation of university networks aimed ultimately at the creation of an alliance of European universities or a similar network
  • To promote synergy with European structural funds in the process of internationalization of Widening teams and exploitation of research results on the market
  • To attract renowned academics to Widening institutions and consolidate a team of excellence
  • To stimulate interoperability and modernization of  academic careers in Widening countries/regions


  • 1 – Broaden participation and spread excellence (“WIDENING”)
    • Destination 1 – Improve access to excellence
    • Destination 2 – Attract and mobilize the best talents
  • 2 – Reform and consolidate the European research and innovation system (“ERA”)

Eligible countries

Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czechia, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia; the Associated Countries as well as the Outermost regions.

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