Effective research is paramount when tackling the key societal challenges that face us today. Some of these challenges go beyond the capabilities of individual research groups, instead requiring a collaborative and coordinated effort.

Co-funded Initiatives aim to pool research expertise and resources to address these challenges through consortia of research funding agencies. These consortia coordinate research funding, targeting areas of strategic importance.

For further details on how to participate in Co-funded Initiatives, email: eu-cofund@sfi.ie.

There are three types of initiative that facilitate this in Horizon 2020:

Neurodegenerative Disease Research (JPND)

JPND-Pathways Analysis across Neurodegenerative Diseases

A Healthy Diet for a Healthy Life (HDHL)

Science Foundation Ireland, the Department of Agriculture and the HRB are actively engaged in the JPI HDHL which is a partnership of research funding agencies from across Europe and beyond who are working together to address the major societal challenge of healthy lifestyles and nutrition. 

The grand challenge is to identify the most effective ways of improving public health through specific interventions that target diet and physical activity.

The JPI HDHL has identified 3 key interacting research areas:

  • Determinants of diet and physical activity
  • Diet and food production
  • Diet-related chronic diseases

Science Foundation Ireland’s engagement in JPI HDHL Joint Transnational Calls:

European Commission Website

European Research Area Networks (ERA-Nets) are networks of public research organisations that coordinate joint research activities in research areas which are of significant strategic value and relevance to the EU. ERA-Nets are initiated by ERA-Net calls in the Horizon 2020 work programme to which consortia of research funding agencies (ERA-Net consortia) submit ERA-Net proposals.  If approved by the Commission, the ERA-Net consortium forms an ERA-Net which runs joint transnational calls and other transnational activities.  The first joint call run by an ERA-Net is 33% co-funded by the European Commission.

European Commission Website


The 1st Transnational Call for research proposals under the ERA-NET Bluebio is now open. BlueBio aims at achieving a sustainable and competitive Blue Bioeconomy in Europe. The goal is to generate knowledge for Blue Bioeconomy value chains and improve the transfer of bio-based products and services from research, innovation and demonstrations to production scale implementing the multi-actor-approach. BlueBio contributes to the production of safe, nutritious and valuable bio-products and services, while applying the food first principle. BlueBio launches calls to attract projects that work on the use and value-added of aquatic biomass in integrated value chains from primary production to processing, generating innovative products and services within the bioeconomy.

Proposals may be submitted under four priority areas as follows:

·         Priority area 1: Exploring new bio-resources

·         Priority area 2: Exploring improvements in fisheries and aquaculture

·         Priority area 3: Exploring synergies across sectors

·         Priority area 4: Exploring Biotechnology and ICT


The Cofund is being coordinated by Norway and consists of 28 partners from 16 countries with an estimated fund of €29.25m. The main objective of the Cofund is to establish a coordinated Research and Development funding scheme that will strengthen Europe’s position in the blue bioeconomy.

The funding available for Irish partners is 1,500,000 Euro, which is being supported by the Marine Institute and Science Foundation Ireland. A summary of the National Funding Guidelines are published on the BlueBio ERA-NET website. Any queries relating to the Call should be sent to funding@marine.ie or the nominated National Contact Points listed in the BlueBio call documents. For further information regarding SFI’s engagement, please contact eu-cofund@sfi.ie.

Key Documents

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