Digital transformation: EU Commission has adopted the new "DIGITAL Europe" funding programme
The "DIGITAL Europe" programme is the EU's first funding programme focused on making digital technologies available to businesses and citizens. With a total planned budget of €7.5 billion (in current prices) over 7 years, it will accelerate economic recovery and help shape the digital transformation of European society and economy, benefiting in particular small and medium-sized enterprises. The programme is designed to bridge the gap between research into digital technologies and their deployment, and to bring research results to market - for the benefit of Europe's citizens and businesses, especially SMEs.
For the new funding programme "DIGITAL Europe", the EU Commission adopted the first three work programmes on 10.11.2021.
The main work programme, with a budget of €1.38 billion until the end of 2022, focuses on:
- Artificial Intelligence (AI)
- Cloud and data spaces
- Quantum communications infrastructure
- advanced digital skills
- the widespread use of digital technologies in the economy and society.
The first specific work programme focuses on cybersecurity with a budget of €269 million until the end of 2022. The cybersecurity work programme includes investments in building advanced cybersecurity equipment, tools and data infrastructures. It will fund the development and optimal use of cybersecurity knowledge and skills, promote the exchange of best practices and enable the widespread deployment of cutting-edge cybersecurity solutions across the European economy.
The second specific work programme focuses on the establishment and operation of the network of European Digital Innovation Hubs (EDIHs) with a budget of €329 million until the end of 2023. This network of European Digital Innovation Hubs aims to enable private and public organisations across Europe - including national, regional or local authorities and SMEs - to test new technology and provide support for digital transformation. More information on EDIHs can be found here and a webinar offer can be found here.
The first call for the DIGITAL Europe programme was opened on 17 November 2021.
Further calls will follow in 2022. More Information can be found here.
The DIGITAL Europe programme will not address these challenges in isolation, but rather complement funding available through other EU programmes, such as the Horizon Euroea programme for research and innovation, the Connecting Europe Facility for digital infrastructure, the Recovery and Resilience Facility and the Structural Funds, to name but a few. It is part of the EU's long-term budget, the Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027. Important current calls for proposals can be found here on our website.
The fourth work programme on High Performance Computing will follow shortly.