Innovation, R&D

Horizon 2020 SME Engagement Scheme

What is it? 

The Horizon 2020 SME Engagement Scheme is aimed at supporting Scottish based SMEs (Small to Medium sized Enterprises) to explore the opportunities of Horizon 2020 funding and apply for particular schemes or calls under it, with the assistance of a Scottish Higher Education Institute. 

The proposed programme of activity should lead to applications for H2020 funding that will benefit the business and the Scottish economy. The Horizon 2020 SME Engagement Scheme is seen as an initial step on the “journey of engagement” for the business to access H2020 funds with other agencies likely to provide additional support if the H2020 application is successful eg. Negotiation of contracts.

The H2020 scheme is broad in nature and encompasses all subject areas that are relevant for the competitive H2020 calls: from science, engineering and technology to arts, creative industries, humanities and social sciences. Likewise the range of company sectors can be from social enterprises to technology based companies so long as the eligibility criteria are adhered to.

Up to £400k set aside by the Scottish Funding Council for H2020 engagement vouchers which will be administered by Interface. The award is for up to £5,000 (minimum of £1,000) with an in-kind contribution from the SME.

Who's it for? 

All SMEs, including social enterprises, with main business operations in Scotland are eligible to partner with a Scottish Higher Education Institute under the H2020 scheme (it is anticipated that these will hold a registration commencing SC).  By SME we refer to organisations that are registered companies, employ between 1- 250 employees and have an annual turnover not exceeding 50 million euro.

How do I apply? 

Download application forms and guidelines from the Interface website. All submissions should then be emailed to Applicants can use the support teams at Scotland Europa and Enterprise Europe network for clarifications on funding calls. 

The application process and reporting in place has been made as simple as possible and the approval process has a standard 3 week duration. 

SMEs can apply for more than one H2020 voucher   - only 1 ‘live’ application at any point in time. The partnering Higher Education Institute should be the lead applicant. 

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