The new framework programme for research and technological development, HORIZON 2020, has started in 2014.
1) Support for "Excellent Science" including grants for individual researchers from the European Research Council and Marie Sklodowska-Curie fellowships (formerly known as Marie Curie fellowships);
2) Support for "Industrial Leadership" including grants for small and medium-sized enterprises and indirect finance for companies through the European Investment Bank and other financial intermediaries;
3) Support for research to tackle "societal challenges". During negotiations between the European Parliament and Council it was decided to support research towards meeting seven broad challenges:
1. Health, demographic change and wellbeing
2. Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine, maritime and inland water research, and the bioeconomy
3. Secure, clean and efficient energy
4. Smart, green and integrated transport
5. Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials
6. Inclusive, innovative and reflective societies
7. Secure & innovative societies
In addition, part of the Horizon 2020 budget goes towards funding the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT), research activities carried out under the Euratom Treaty and non-nuclear research carried out by the Joint Research Centre, the European Commission's in-house science service.
The focus of the programme is oriented more towards important societal challenges and marketable products, so that HORIZON 2020 contributes to the “Europe 2020” strategy.