As a service for our CLIB members, we are scanning funding portals on different levels regularly and summarise the most relevant funding opportunities for you on this page. You can find open calls on regional, federal, and European level below.
Just click on any of the open calls to find a summary in English. For national funding opportunities the full call may only be available in German.
If you miss any call on the site, please let us know and contact Katrin Kriebs (firstname.lastname@example.org) directly.
Regional Funding Opportunities
Innovations in the environmental economy, circular economy and climate adaptation under the NRW ERDF/JTF programme 2021-2027.
The GreenEconomy.IN.NRW innovation competition supports SMEs in sustainably exploiting the ecological innovation potential of North Rhine-Westphalia as a business location. The competition is based on a broad understanding of innovation that aims to make both technical and non-technical potential visible and usable in the long term through cooperation between business and science.
Deadline: 18 April 2023
Mittelstand innovativ und digital
With the programme, the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Innovation, Digitalisation and Energy of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia (MWIDE) strengthens small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in digitising the innovative power of their businesses, digitally developing their products, services and production processes and thus continuing to be one of the economic engines of the state in the future.
The NRW Patent Validation funding competition is based on two levels and is designed to help research and educational institutions exploit their intellectual property rights through licensing, sale or spin-off. In the first phase, the scientific potential of research and educational institutions is activated for the validation of patents. In a subsequent optional phase, cooperative relationships between science and research are initiated and consolidated in the form of collaborative projects.
Deadline: 28 February 2023
Regio.NRW – Transformation
„Regio.NRW“ is an instrument to support regions in their transformation and the further development of their strengths. Here, projects are to be funded that make a decisive contribution to successfully shaping regional transformation processes with a view to the specific profiles of the regions.
In order to ensure regional effectiveness, the projects should relate to a region of at least three districts or independent cities or, alternatively, at least one million inhabitants in North Rhine-Westphalia. Flexible spatial settings and overlapping regions are possible for different projects.
Deadline: 31 January 2023
In order to mobilise the start-up potential in research and educational institutions on a broad scale, the Start-up Transfer.NRW funding competition in the course of the ERDF/JTF Programme NRW 2021-2027 supports those from science and research who are willing to start a business in preparing to do so. The EU from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and the state of North Rhine-Westphalia are making a total of 40 million euros available for this purpose until 2027.
Deadline: 31 January 2023
Zukunftsgutscheine für KMU im Rheinischen Revier
The NRW state government is launching the „Zukunftsgutscheine Rheinisches Revier“ funding programme to support SMEs in the green and digital transformation of their business model. The new funding programme provides small and medium-sized enterprises with up to 249 employees with funds from the European Union, the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, the federal government and the Federal Employment Agency: for the partial financing of consulting services, personnel costs, qualification and further training measures as well as necessary investments.
Deadline: 30 June 2024
Federal Funding Opportunities
Biologisierung der Technik: Bioinspirierte Material- und Werkstoffforschung
With the call for proposals „Biologisation of Technology: Bio-inspired Materials and Materials Research“, the BMBF intends to provide open application funding for pre-competitive R&D&I projects that focus on the use of biological knowledge and a transfer of the underlying principles to technical systems. The focus of the project work must be in the area of materials and materials research.
Deadline: 21 February 2023
CooperationVET - Projekte der internationalen Berufsbildungszusammenarbeit
The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports individual and joint projects within the framework of international vocational training cooperation (iBBZ).
Funding is provided for exemplary, innovative concepts for action in vocational training and continuing education in 2 modules. You align your project with the interests and reform concerns of the BMBF partner countries and, as far as possible, take into account the needs of the German companies operating there in terms of recruiting and securing skilled workers.
Deadline: depending on individual programme published on www.berufsbildung-international.de
Digital jetzt – Investitionsförderung für KMU
SMEs and craft enterprises can apply for grants of up to 70 % for investments within the framework of two modules:
Module 1: Investment in digital technologies, i.e. the acquisition of new hardware and software.
Module 2: The investment in the qualification of employees aims to build up the know-how necessary for the sustainable digitisation of your company directly in your company.
Deadline: continuous, latest 31 December 2023
Entwicklung regenerativer Kraftstoffe
The Federal Ministry of Digital Affairs and Transport (BMDV) supports you in the development of renewable fuels.
Funding is provided in particular for application-oriented projects on Development and demonstration projects, feasibility studies, Innovation clusters on topics that are central to the objectives of the funding program, innovation consulting services and innovation support services such as testing and certification for the purpose of developing more efficient products, processes or services, and obtaining, validating and defending patents.
Deadline: semi-annual cut-off date on 31 March and 30 September
Funding is provided for the development of a business idea into a business plan, the development of marketable products and innovative services as well as the targeted preparation of a start-up of ambitious innovative start-ups from universities and research institutions. The funding includes accompanying advice for the founding teams from a start-up support network.
Deadline: 31 January 2023
Förderprogramm Nachwachsende Rohstoffe (FPNR)
Several calls within the programme.
The „Renewable Resources“ funding programme provides the framework for funding research, development and demonstration projects on renewable resources by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL). It is based on the goals and guiding principles of the National Sustainability Strategy and the Bioeconomy Policy Strategy, as well as on other strategies and programmes such as the Energy Research Programme, the Forest Strategy 2020 and the Bioeconomy 2030 Research Strategy, and the German Resource Efficiency Programme.
Förderung der grenzüberschreitenden Vernetzung in Horizont Europa
Funding is provided for measures to prepare and draft proposals for calls in the thematic clusters in the second pillar of Horizon Europe. Likewise, the development of project proposals for collaborative projects within European Partnerships that can be thematically assigned to the second pillar of Horizon Europe is to be supported.
Deadline: cut-off dates on 31 January 2023, 31 May 2023 and 30 September 2023
Förderung von forschungsintensiven Unternehmensgründungen (EXIST-Forschungstransfer)
The EXIST research transfer programme is designed to support young, high-growth start-ups in the high-tech sector. They receive funding in two phases: In funding phase I (Pre-Seed), research teams are supported in their company start-up. In funding phase II (Seed), further development work, measures for the start-up of business activities in the newly founded technology company and the creation of the prerequisites for external company financing are funded.
Deadline: 31 January 2023 for phase I
Through its “GO-Bio initial” funding programme, the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) aims to identify and develop early research ideas in life sciences that have a clear potential for innovation.
Its purpose is to support project work in order to advance research outcomes to a level where they become eligible for other more established programmes.
Deadline: annual cut-off date on 15 February
The object of the funding in the programme is to provide expert advice as well as support to the beneficiary company by authorised consulting firms in the implementation of necessary measures in the modules „Digitisation Strategy“, „IT Security“, „Digitised Business Processes“, „Data Competence“ or „Digital Market Development“ in accordance with the state of the art. Economic, social and ecological sustainability must be taken into account.
Deadline: 30 June 2024
A total of three funding modules are being promoted. They are aimed at the use and construction of demonstration plants for the industrial bioeconomy and thus at the scaling of innovative bioeconomic processes and procedures (modules A and B). In addition, the integration of new scaled biobased products and processes into regional industrial value-added networks is to be promoted on the basis of example regions of the industrial bioeconomy (Building Block C).
Deadline: semi-annual deadlines on 01 March and 30 June until 2024
Innovationen für eine nachhaltigere Ernährung
As part of its holistic approach to nutrition policy, the BMEL is pursuing the goal of making health-promoting and sustainable nutrition simple and self-evident with the announcement on the „Promotion of innovations for more sustainable nutrition“.
If you research and develop in the area of innovative products, processes and services and thus contribute to more sustainable nutrition, you can receive a grant under certain conditions.
Deadline: 28 February 2023
Internationale Zusammenarbeit in Bildung, Wissenschaft und Forschung
The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports the networking of research and education with partners around the world in different calls. Funding is provided for the expansion of international contacts and networks.
Depending on the project, German universities, non-university institutions and small and medium-sized enterprises are eligible to apply.
Deadline: Individual deadlines for the country-specific calls
The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports high-risk industrial research and pre-competitive development projects of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the field of biomedicine. Your project can be funded as an application-related industrial research project and also as a pre-competitive development project. Your project must be important for the future market positioning of the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) involved.
Deadline: semi-annual cut-off date on 15 April and 15 October
The funding focuses on forward-looking, climate-neutral products from biogenic resources that minimise environmentally harmful emissions and waste or integrate processes into natural cycles or value chains.
Funding is provided for individual and collaborative projects in industrial research and experimental development.
Deadline: semi-annual cut-off date on 15 April and 15 October
KMU-innovativ: Ressourceneffizienz und Klimaschutz
The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports high-risk industrial research and pre-competitive development projects of SMEs. The funding focuses on cross-technology and application-related individual and joint projects on the thematic priorities of raw material efficiency, energy efficiency and climate protection, sustainable water management and sustainable land management.
Deadline: semi-annual cut-off dates on 15 April and 15 October
Kreativer Nachwuchs forscht für die Bioökonomie
The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports research, development and innovation projects of junior research groups from the natural sciences, information technology and engineering that accelerate the transition to a bioeconomy.
Funding is provided for projects on new achievements in know-how, processes, technology or software that support the transformation to a sustainable bioeconomy.
Deadline: annual cut-off date on 15 July until 2023
neue Produkte für die Bioökonomie
The object of the funding is the exploration of new product ideas for a bio-based economy as well as feasibility studies on their technical implementation. The call is open to all topics and covers all areas of the bioeconomy as defined in the „National Research Strategy BioEconomy 2030“.
Projects can be funded in these 2 phases: Exploratory phase and Feasibility phase.
Deadline: annual cut-off dates on 01 February
Bundesagentur für Sprunginnovationen SPRIND
SPRIND’s goal is to create new leap innovations from Germany. That means products, services and systems that make all of our lives noticeably and sustainably better.
The support is comprehensive. SPRIND finances, helps assemble teams and connects with the right networks in science, business and politics.
Validierung des technologischen und gesellschaftlichen Innovationspotenzials wissenschaftlicher Forschung – VIP+
The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports you as a research institution, university or public institution in financing projects in all research areas. Funding is provided for projects that systematically demonstrate the feasibility and practicability of research results as well as their innovation potential. The research results concerned must be in the validation phase at the time of the project, i.e. between discovery and application.
verbesserte Produktionskapazitäten sowie F&E bei Speziallipiden und anderen Hilfsstoffen für mRNA-Impfstoffe und andere mRNA-Arzneimittel
The aim of this funding guideline is to contribute to the resilience of the supply chains for mRNA medicinal products in Europe by improving and expanding the production capacities for special lipids in Germany in the short term. In addition, funding is to be provided to companies and research institutions that (further) develop production processes for special lipids in the medium term and research and develop new special lipids and other excipients for mRNA drugs in the medium to long term.
Deadline: 31 December 2023
Zentrales Innovationsprogramm Mittelstand (ZIM)
The Central Innovation Programme for SMEs (ZIM) is a nationwide funding programme that is open to all technologies and sectors. The ZIM aims to sustainably strengthen the innovative power and thus the competitiveness of SMEs. Companies can carry out research and development as individual projects or as cooperation projects with research institutions or other companies.
European Funding Opportunities
CBE JU ANNUAL WORK PROGRAMME 2023
CBE JU has published its Annual Work Programme for 2023, including information about the next call for project proposals. €215.5 million will be dedicated to advancing competitive circular bio-based industries in Europe across 18 topics.
The CBE JU Info Day 2023 is planned for 20 April 2023 in person in Brussels, with ample face-to-face networking opportunities. The sessions will also be streamed online. Calls will open after this date.
Deadline: 20 September 2023
COST - European Cooperation in Science and Technology
COST funds interdisciplinary research networks called COST Actions. These Actions bring together researchers, innovators and other professionals including industry specialists, who are based in Europe and beyond, to collaborate on research topics for a period of 4 years.
The funding a COST Action receives covers the expenses of networking activities rather than research and as such is used to organise and fund events, Short-term Scientific Missions, Training Schools, communication activities, and virtual networking tools.
Deadline: continuous, next collection date 25 October 2023
EIC Accelerator Pilot
The EIC Accelerator supports individual Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), in particular Startups and spinout companies to develop and scaleup game-changing innovations. In some cases small mid-caps (up to 500 employees) are supported.
The EIC Accelerator provides substantial financial support. In addition, EIC selected companies receive coaching, mentoring, access to investors and corporates, and many other opportunities as part of the EIC community.
ERC Proof of Concept Grants
The ERC Proof of Concept Grants aim at facilitating exploration of the commercial and social innovation potential of ERC funded research, by funding further work (i.e. activities which were not scheduled to be funded by the original ERC frontier research grant) to verify the innovation potential of ideas arising from ERC funded projects. Proof of Concept Grants are therefore on offer only to Principal Investigators whose proposals draw substantially on their ERC funded research.
Deadline: 20 April 2023 / 21 September 2023
eureka Network projects
The Network projects programme eases collaboration between organisations in Eureka countries offering you the freedom to design your project proposal and build your ideal consortium. With limited eligibility criteria and minimal paperwork, taking part accelerates your access to public funding.
Deadline: programme ending 31. December 2025
Globalstars call for projects - Brazil (São Paulo)
The national funding bodies from Sweden, Spain and Germany and the regional research funding body the São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP) from the state of São Paulo, Brazil, have allocated funding for organisations collaborating on international R&D projects in the fields of smart cities and healthcare, with AI as enabling technology, and industry 4.0.
Deadline: 31 January 2023
Horizon Europe Annual Work Programme 2023-24
The Commission has now adopted the main Horizon Europe work programme 2023-24, with a budget of ca. 13.5 billion EUR, over 40 % of which is aimed towards projects connected to climate action, biodiversity and reducing GHG. Calls will open in different clusters and programmes, including the Cluster 6, of special interest to CLIB members active in biotech and bioeconomy.
Deadline: various deadlines for the different clusters and programmes
Contact us if you want to know more or are interested in submitting a proposal.
Innovation Fund third large-scale call for projects
The European Commission is launching the third call for large-scale projects under the EU Innovation Fund. This 2022 call for large-scale projects will boost the deployment of industrial solutions to decarbonise Europe.
The call will fund projects covering the following topics:
- General decarbonisation
- Innovative electrification in industry and hydrogen
- Clean tech manufacturing
- Mid-sized pilots
Deadline: programme ending 16 March 2023
IraSME - 31st call for proposals
- Development of new products, processes or technical services which exceed the current international state of the art
- Technical/experimental development up to a prototype level
- R&D with significant technical risks for each funded partner
for consortia with a minimum of 2 companies from 2 participating countries/regions.
Deadline: 29 March 2023
Interreg NWE Programme 2021-2027
Since the industrial revolution, North West Europe has been at the vanguard of industrialisation and economic development in Europe. However, this century of growth came at a cost on the environment, on people, and on territorial inequalities.
The Interreg NWE Programme is looking for ways to restore this. The NWE territorial analysis highlights specific territorial needs where action is required to reverse the trends of the past and to prepare regions for the sustainable transition towards better environmental conditions and new socio-economic opportunities.
Deadline: several calls twice per year