Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Framework programme


Previous programme


Official Journal Reference

L 334 of 1994-12-22

Legislative Reference

94/806/CE of 1994-11-23
To improve energy security by ensuring durable and reliable energy services at affordable cost and conditions; to reduce the impact of the production and use of energy, in particular the emissions of CO2; and to strengthen the technological basis of the energy industry.


JOULE addresses the R&D activities within the Non-Nuclear Energy Programme, while THERMIE deals with demonstration activities.

Energy related research and development activities are split into four main areas:

Area 1: Energy RTD strategy: to develop a global European energy RTD strategy which integrates all energy related dimensions (e.g. environment, economic development, etc.).

Area 2: Rational use of Energy: to reduce energy consumption and to stimulate market penetration of innovative efficient and clean technologies in buildings, industry and transport.

Area 3: Renewable Energies: to stimulate the introduction of renewable energies (biomass and waste, wind energy, solar energy, etc.) into the energy system.

Area 4: Fossil fuels: to reduce emissions, to increase the conversion and utilization efficiencies of fossil fuels.


Five areas:

- Energy RTD strategies:
To develop a global European energy RTD strategy integrating all energy-related dimensions, particularly environmental and economic development at a world, regional and local level:
. Global analysis of energy RTD policy options;
. Socio-economic research for energy;
. Modelling (to complete and apply a new generation of macro- and micro-economic models, the development of which began under the Third Framework Programme);
. Energy-environment economic forum (to promote dialogue between actors involved in research, industry and policy);
. Synergies (to develop a better understanding of Member States' energy RTD policies and to identify appropriate synergies between Community and national activities);
. Promotion of technologies (through the effective dissemination of RTD results and the elaboration of training programmes using new technologies);

- Rational use of energy (RUE):
Actions are focused on the demand side of the energy and aimed at reducing energy consumption and stimulating the market penetration of innovative, efficient and clean technologies:
. Rational use of energy in buildings;
. Rational use of energy in industry;
. Energy industry and fuel cells;
. Rational use of energy in transport;

- Renewable energies:
To enable and stimulate the introduction of renewable energies into the energy system which offer substantial advantages from the point of view of environmental protection, CO2 emissions and long-term security of energy supply; new initiatives aimed at enhancing the socio-economic integration of renewable energies are also supported:
. Integration of renewable energies;
. Solar photovoltaics;
. Renewable energies in buildings;
. Wind energy;
. Energy from biomass and waste;
. Hydroelectric power;
. Geothermal energy;
. Energy storage and other future options;

- Fossil fuels:
Actions are aimed at reducing all emissions, increasing the conversion and utilization efficiencies of fossil fuels and improving the economic viability of fossil fuel-based energy conversion systems:
. Clean technologies for solid fuels;
. Generic combustion;
. New fuels in transport;
. Hydrocarbons;

- Dissemination of energy technologies (mainly THERMIE):
Complementing the Third Activity of the Fourth Framework Programme, this action specifically addresses the dissemination of energy technologies.


The Commission (DG XII) is responsible for implementing the R&D component of the specific programme on non-nuclear energy, assisted by an advisory committee composed of representatives of the Member States and chaired by a representative of the Commission.

Support is provided for shared-cost R&D projects carried out by consortia including undertakings, research centres and universities. The level of the Community's financial participation does not normally exceed 50% of the project costs.

Funding can also be granted for concerted actions and thematic networks. Concerted actions are aimed at coordinating RTD projects implemented both under the present programme and by other public or private bodies. EU funding may cover up to 100 % of the administrative and networking costs.

Thematic networks are aimed at gathering together all the main actors involved in the development of particular energy technologies in training, analysis and development of the market. EU funding may be up to 100 % of the additional acceptable costs.

A number of preparatory, accompanying and support measures are also included in order to render the programme more effective by improving its accessibility to potential participants and enhancing its impact. These measures, which are not always implemented by calls for proposals, include:

- Studies in support of the programme;
- Conferences, seminars, workshops or other scientific or technical meetings;
- Use of external expertise;
- Scientific publications;
- Training activities;
- Independent evaluation of programme administration and of the implementation of the activities;

Finally, technology stimulation measures for SMEs have been set up to encourage SMEs to play a larger part in the development and utilization of energies. Two types of actions are available:
- Exploratory awards to help SMEs to prepare complete research projects;
- Cooperative research, a project type designed to promote R&D for SMEs with no or inadequate R&D means.

Further details of these exploratory awards and cooperative RTD projects can be found on this data base in the summary for the technology stimulation measures for SMEs (programme acronym=TSME C).

Details of calls for proposals for R&D projects, together with full text versions of information packages and work programmes, can be obtained on the WWW from the CORDIS Document Library.

More detailed information on the implementation of the specific programme on non-nuclear energy is contained under the summary of the JOULE-THERMIE programme.
Record Number: 626 / Last updated on: 2014-03-05