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Future and Emerging Technologies (FET)

Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) activities aim at exploring unconventional new research ideas and topics that might call into question existing paradigms and give significant impetus for technological change. FET activities will facilitate risky and long-term basic research in the domain of new technologies, create the necessary knowledge base and infrastructure, and strengthen multidisciplinary and international cooperation. The concept is grounded on excellence but also includes the exploration of pre-competitive ideas with regard to future technologies.

Funding of unconventional research in the domain of new technologies is considered to be of high risk in the short-term but to pay off by technological innovation and competitiveness and to help coping with societal challenges in the long-term. During the past Research Framework Programmes, FET activities facilitated the exploration of promising new research areas which nowadays have grown into established areas, e.g. quantum information technologies and micro- and nanoelectronics.     

FET was funded as a sub-programme in the area of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) under the Seventh Research Framework Programme (FP7). Under Horizon 2020, FET is no longer topic-related but constitutes a separate funding line in Part I "Excellent Science". Thus, the innovation potential of novel, step-change technologies will be unlocked even across the range of ICT.

The well-known activity lines from FP7 are continued: 

  • FET Open for small explorational projects at an early stage of idea generation,
  • FET Proactive for new projects dealing with emerging transformative research areas; In addition, the PPP "High Performance Computing" activities will be funded within the scope of FET Proactive.
  • FET Flagships for large-scale visionary research initiatives