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Cohesion policy and Horizon 2020

Despite serious efforts deployed at national and European level, significant internal disparities remain between countries and regions in terms of research and innovation performance. Therefore specific measures within and along with Horizon 2020 will be taken in order to close the gap between so-called "innovation leaders" and the "modest innovators" in Europe.

The activities of Part IV of Horizon 2020 "Spreading excellence and widening participation" are dedicated towards the promotion of excellence in all parts of Europe. Their specific goal is to unlock (hidden) potential in low performing regions and by that to widen participation in Horizon 2020 and support the development of a successful innovation-based economy in the whole of Europe. Supported by accompanying policy measures this goal should be reached by the following actions:

Teaming of excellent research institutions and low performing RDI regions: The creation or the significant upgrade of an existing centre of excellence in a region with low research and innovation performance by teaming up with a leading research institution in Europe. 

Twinning of research institutions: The significantly strenghtening of a defined field of research in an emerging institution through links with at least two internationally-leading institutions in a defined field.

Establishing "ERA Chairs" to attract outstanding academics to institutions with a clear potential for research excellence, in order to help these institutions fully unlock this potential and hereby create a level playing field for research and innovation in the European Research Area.