Eurostars 3 - Call 5

The Eurostars call is open for innovative SMEs and other organisations that want to collaborate in an international R&D and innovation project.

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The amount of funding your organisation receives when you participate in a project is managed by your national funding body. UK registered SME’s can apply to Innovate UK for a total grant of up to 360,000 euros for each eligible UK project partner or 60% of total eligible project costs, whichever is the least.


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Eurostars is part of the European Partnership on Innovative SMEs. The partnership is co-funded by the European Union through Horizon Europe.

Eurostars is a funding instrument that supports innovative SMEs and project partners (large companies, universities, research organisations and other types of organisations) by funding international collaborative R&D and innovation projects. By participating, organisations can access public funding for international collaborative R&D projects in all fields.

To have a successful Eurostars application you must:

  • Define your project idea.
  • Collaborate internationally, sharing expertise.
  • Develop products, processes or services that can be easily commercialised.

Your project consortium must have an innovative SME in the leading role, but it can also include other types of organisations like large companies, universities, research organisations and more.

  • Project applications must fulfil seven eligibility criteria:

    1. The project consortium is led by an innovative SME* from a Eurostars country**.
    2. The project consortium is composed of at least two entities that are independent of one another.
    3. The project consortium is composed of entities from at least two Eurostars countries with at least one organisation coming from an EU or Horizon Europe Associated Country***.
    4. The budget of the SMEs from the participating countries, excluding subcontracting, is 50% or more of the total project cost.
    5. No single participant or country is responsible for more than 70% of the budget of the project.
    6. The project duration is 36 months or less****.
    7. The project has an exclusive focus on civil applications.

    *We define an innovative SME as any SMEs with the ambition to collaborate on R&D and innovation with international partners to develop new products, processes and services for European and global markets. Innovative SMEs do not need to have a proven track record of R&D activities.

    R&D: “Research and experimental development (R&D) comprise creative and systematic work undertaken in order to increase the stock of knowledge – including knowledge of humankind, culture and society – and to devise new applications of available knowledge.” (OECD Frascati Manual 2015, p. 44)

    Innovation: “a new or improved product or process (or combination thereof) that differs significantly from the unit’s previous products or processes and that has been made available to potential users (product) or brought into use by the unit (process).” (OECD Oslo Manual 2018, p. 20).

    **Eurostars countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Türkiye, and the United Kingdom.

    ***Eurostars countries which are not an EU member state or a Horizon Europe Associated Country: Canada, Republic of Korea, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

    ****If justified, you may be permitted an extension after your project has started. This request will undergo an evaluation to determine whether the extension of the project is duly justified by the participants. It must be approved by the Eureka Secretariat and the relevant national funding bodies.

  • The amount of funding your organisation receives when you participate in a project is managed by your national funding body.

    United Kingdom funding body, Innovate UK, fund R&D costs for SMEs participating in our Eurostars programme.

    Innovate UK covers up to 60% of project costs in grants for SMEs.

    UK registered SME’s can apply for a total grant of up to 360,000 euros for each eligible UK project partner or 60% of total eligible project costs, whichever is the least.

    United Kingdom funding body, Innovate UK, funds eligible organisations applying to our Eurostars programme. This is not affected by ongoing negotiations for the United Kingdom’s association to Horizon Europe.

  • Eurostars targets innovative SMEs interested in developing a new product, process or service in collaboration with international partners. Any type of organisation (SMEs, large companies, research institutes, universities, etc.) from any country can participate as long as the eligibility criteria are met.

    Check the eligibility criteria on Eureka’s website.

    Eurostars adopts a bottom-up approach. This means that project partners are free to generate innovation in any technological areas and address any market areas. However, the project must have an exclusive focus on civil applications.

  • Contact your national or regional funding body using the form available on the Eureka website to discuss your project idea, funding in your country, legal and financial viability and eligibility.

    If you would like help to find a project partner, contact Innovate UK KTN’s European Programmes team.


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