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Horizon Europe

Horizon Europe is the main Research and Innovation Funding Programme of the European Commission.

Horizon 2020

Horizon 2020 is the previous Funding Programme. There are no longer calls, but projects can run until 2024.

Digital Europe

Digital Europe is a Funding Programme focused on bringing digital technology to businesses, citizens and administrations.

Other EU Funding

There are many other relevant EU funding programmes, managed by several agencies and directorates.

Digital Europe Introduction

The Digital Europe programme (DIGITAL) with a budget of € 7.5 billion aims to support the digital transition in the EU by fostering the uptake of digital technologies by businesses, citizens and public administration and enhancing digital skills of the workforce.

Strategic objectives

Digital Europe funds projects in five key capacity areas (strategic objectives):

  • Supercomputing (€2.227 bn): deployment of world-class exascale and post-exascale supercomputing capacities;
  • Artificial Intelligence (AI), data & cloud (€ 2.062 bn): setting up EU-wide sectoral data spaces based on a cloud-to-edge federated infrastructure and promotion of testing and adoption of AI-based solutions;
  • Cybersecurity (€ 1.650 bn): building up advanced cybersecurity capabilities, promoting the sharing of best practices and ensuring wide deployment of cybersecurity solutions;
  • Advanced digital skills (€ 0.577 bn): increasing the education offer and training in key digital technologies and digital skills for non-ICT sectors, and support collaboration between higher education institutions and the private sector;
  • Accelerating best use of technologies (€ 1.072 bn): establishment of a network of European Digital Innovation Hubs supporting the digital transformation of European public and private organisations and deployment of high-impact projects such as blockchain capacities or the digital transformation of public administration and services.

With its variety of topics the programme addresses a wide range of stakeholders: SMEs, higher education institutions, research centres, public authorities, large companies etc.

The Digital Europe Programme complements other EU programmes, such as the Horizon Europe programme for research and innovation, and the Connecting Europe Facility for digital infrastructure, the Recovery and Resilience Facility and the Structural funds.



image of Autoship - a new and durable way of freight transport

Autoship - a new and durable way of freight transport

Autoship is, as the name suggests, an acronym for autonomous ship. Just like with self-driving cars, the possibilities of an unmanned boat seem endless. It can create more efficient freight transport, around the clock deliveries and these are just a few of the examples. The project has two societal challenges.

At first, De Vlaamse Waterweg was a bit hesitant as their experience with FP7 or Horizon 2020 projects was limited and they had not been very successful up until then. The fact that they were already doing basic research on the topic of autonomous boats, and the administrative help of NCP FLanders helped De Vlaamse waterweg to cross the line and get involved.