Horizon Europe announces four calls for research and innovation related to Covid-19. Organisations and businesses in the UK are eligible to apply as part of a consortium (which must include at least one independent legal entity established in a EU Member State, and at least two other independent legal entities in a Member State or linked countries which include the UK: this applies to all four calls below). If you are looking for a partner to apply with, a list of organisations seeking partners can be found on the page for each funding call, and you can contact KTN’s European team for more information.

1. Vaccines & therapeutic clinical trials to boost COVID-19 prevention and treatment (budget €30m)

This topic aims at supporting activities that enable the conduct of vaccine & therapeutic trials to boost prevention and further inform public health policy and clinical management. To that end, proposals under this topic should aim for delivering results that are directed, tailored towards and contributing to two of the three expected outcomes listed below:

  • Enrichment of the current portfolio of SARS-CoV-2 /COVID-19 prophylactics and therapeutics with clinical testing of promising candidates.
  • Further development of new, or adjustment of existing, vaccine candidates to be effective against the current SARS-CoV-2 variants and potentially protect against new emerging ones.
  • Development of new effective therapies against SARS-CoV-2 for the clinical management of COVID-19 disease, including for the prevention of disease progression to severe illness and hospitalisation.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 3 and 10 million would allow these specific challenges to be addressed appropriately, with phase I trials expected to be at the lower end of this spectrum. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

2. Cohorts united against COVID-19 variants of concern (budget €60m)

This topic aims at supporting activities that are enabling or contributing to the development of large scale, COVID-19 cohorts and networks worldwide, including beyond Europe’s borders, forging links with European initiatives as a global response to the pandemic. To that end, proposals under this topic should aim at delivering results that are directed, tailored towards and contributing to all of the following expected outcomes:

  • In the short-term, contribution to a better understanding of the global circulation of the current and emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern and their characteristics, delivering recommendations on the best strategies to control viral spread, as well as on optimized clinical management and treatment of COVID-19 patients.
  • In the short-term, contribution to the evaluation of the impact of the variants of concern on the different vaccines and vaccination strategies and information on best vaccine and treatment options.
  • In the short/medium/long-term, monitoring the emergence of new variants of concern, elucidating the impact of different variants on transmissibility and severity of COVID-19 disease, including long-term post-infection sequelae (long COVID).
  • In the long term, establishment of regional and internationally linked strategic cohorts that can be pivoted rapidly to research on emerging infectious diseases.
  • In the long-term, contribution to regional and international pandemic preparedness networks to rapidly address pandemics in the future on a global scale.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 7 and 10 million would allow these specific challenges to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

3. Research infrastructure services for rapid research responses to COVID-19 and other infectious disease epidemics (budget €21m)

Project results are expected to contribute to all the following expected outcomes:

  • comprehensive catalogue of research infrastructure services relevant to tackle infectious diseases epidemics is available, including services supporting pertinent social sciences research;
  • fast assembly and provision of innovative, customised and efficient research infrastructure services to support research linked to detecting, assessing and combatting newly emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants;
  • challenge driven integration of research infrastructures to better support research addressing infectious diseases and face epidemics, including for use by epidemics risk assessment and risk management bodies (such as the European Centre for Disease prevention and Control (ECDC), the World Health Organisation (WHO), the World Organisation of Animal Health (OIE) and national epidemics management bodies);
  • rapid response to epidemics outbreaks through research infrastructure services underpinning and supporting research aiming to understand causes and development of the epidemic;
  • development of novel/adapted epidemics intervention tools and measures enabled by relevant research infrastructure (RI) services;
  • availability of research data emerging from access provision activities for re-use on common data platforms and registries, according to FAIR principles and compliant with legal provisions under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

The granting authority can fund a maximum of one project.

4. FAIR and open data sharing in support to European preparedness for COVID-19 and other infectious diseases (budget €12m)

Project results are expected to contribute to all the following expected outcomes:

  • European researchers and public health actors fighting the spread of infectious diseases, e.g. COVID-19 and emerging infectious diseases are able to store, share, access, analyse, process and cite research and clinical data and other research digital objects across disciplines and national borders and to collaborate with global partners;
  • federation of viral and human infectious disease data from national and international centres enables pan-European and global sharing and combination of research and clinical data, thereby catalysing and accelerating research advances to combat the COVID-19 pandemic and prepare for future outbreaks;
  • development of digital tools and data analytics for pandemic and outbreak preparedness, including tracking genomic variations of SARS-CoV-2, linking genomic and clinical data to support timely identification of variants of concern, and subsequent rapid characterisation of such strains to inform public health action;
  • linking of FAIR data and metadata on SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19, on other related viruses and diseases, and on socio-economic consequences, across research fields, from omics, clinical, and epidemiological research, to Social Sciences and Humanities accelerate infectious disease research, surveillance and outbreak investigation;
  • contribute to the Horizon Europe European Open Science Cloud (EOSC) Partnership and to the development of the European Health Data Space (EHDS).

The granting authority can fund a maximum of one project.

Find out more about each of the calls below: