Skip to main content
European Commission logo print header

Programme Category


Article available in the following languages:


Coordinating European brain research and developing global initiatives


Proposals should:

  1. Identify areas of neurosciences where the need for enhanced coordination of research communities into active clusters is particularly acute;
  2. Accelerate exchange between researchers in different European research initiatives to promote cooperation and to minimise fragmentation and duplication;
  3. Support the emergence of these clusters, facilitate links with research infrastructures and other major initiatives, in coordination with European Commission services, with the aim of sharing data and enhancing the exploitation of results, fostering new collaborations and identifying future research objectives;
  4. Identify and develop tools and support activities implemented by EU funded initiatives and infra-structures suitable to develop Open Science policy in the neurosciences by sharing and better utilisation of clinical data via IT platforms and also considering any relevant regulatory requirements and policies;
  5. Explore possibilities for broader scale cooperation at global level by fostering dialogue with researchers outside Europe in coordination with research funders around the world, in order to foster the global brain research agenda.

The relevant stakeholders must be involved, in particular thematically focussed research communities, learned societies, large research initiatives, infrastructures as well as relevant funding bodies and regulatory authorities, in order to ensure effective implementation and impact of this coordination action.

The Commission considers that a proposal requesting an EU contribution between EUR 1 to 2 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

The EU and its Member States have made considerable investments in brain research. The European Commission alone has invested some EUR 5.3 billion over the past 10 years. At the same time, many large research initiatives such as the Human Brain Project (HBP), the Joint Programming on Neurodegenerative Diseases (JPND), the ERA-Net NEURON and the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI) have been established in parallel. The numerous resulting research projects have generated considerable amounts of knowledge and innovative approaches. However, translation into new health interventions is below expectations and needs.

Therefore, in many areas of brain research, there is a particular need for better networking and coordination of efforts, at both European and global level, in order to minimise fragmentation and duplication. At the same time, better access to and sharing of data and holistic analysis of results are of crucial importance in line with the EC's Open science policy. Addressing these gaps would create new synergies and open new avenues of research and to which in turn will foster understanding of diseases, innovation and accelerate innovation through the development of new diagnosis, prevention and treatment options in areas of high and unmet medical needs.

  • Reduce fragmentation and duplication of research efforts and foster synergies through enhanced coordination of brain research efforts at EU and at global level.
  • Improve access to and optimise the use of research infrastructures and data sources by the neuroscience research communities, thus ensuring better exploitation of the large investments made in brain research.
  • Achieve critical mass and economies of scale by initiating and fostering new global research initiatives.
  • Enable and accelerate the translation of breakthroughs in brain research into relevant clinical applications.