Improving linkages between various EU Funds is the best way to enhance the impact of research and innovation (R&I) investments. By coordinating different forms of support, these links help creating competitiveness, jobs and growth in the EU by combining, for example, European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF), Horizon 2020 and other EU R&I instruments. Such a cross-cutting approach will be beneficial for gaining international quality of R&I projects, particularly in this area, where the EU is competing on the global stage.
To make these linkages a reality, national and regional authorities involved in the implementation of ESIF programmes focusing on research, innovation and competitiveness must seize the opportunity to ensure coordination and complementarities with instruments like Horizon 2020, COSME, Erasmus+, CreativeEurope and the Connecting Europe Facility. This means joint efforts at EU, national and regional levels in boosting the quality of programmes to achieve better results and higher impacts of the investments.
The European Commission has published guidance for policy-makers and implementing bodies on synergies between the different EU programmes investing into research, innovation and competitiveness, providing possible scenarios for their application in practice.