PES Horizon Europe – Support for Project Establishment and Positioning

This call will be replaced by a new call for proposals shortly. From January 2023, the PES scheme introduces a threshold requirement for PES support to be disbursed. Minor adjustments will be made to the rates, and a limited portion of PES support may be used for procurement of consulting services.


The PES scheme aims to ensure that applications to Horizon Europe with Norwegian participants are of a high quality, to realise the potential of Norwegian research to the fullest possible extent.

This call for proposal is intended to increase the success rate of Norwegian applications for Horizon Europe.

About the call for proposals

The project establishment and positioning funding aims to ensure that applications for Horizon Europe with Norwegian participants are of a high quality.

Application submission deadlines

You must apply for funding as soon as the project proposal begins to take shape and no later than four weeks before the EU application submission deadline. If you are going to be a coordinator for a collaboration project, you should apply for funding 12 weeks before the EU deadline. This is important to ensure that there is enough time to receive guidance from the relevant National Contact Point (NCP) and EU advisers.

The Norwegian-language call for proposals is the legally binding version.

Who is eligible to apply?

All Norwegian actors who have a formal role in an EU project proposal are eligible to apply for funding. Approved research organisations, businesses, public sector bodies, the voluntary sector and groups of such entities can apply. See the list of approved Norwegian research organisations  and definition of public sector body.

Research institutes, universities, university colleges and health trusts can apply for an annual framework grant under the PES scheme. If research organisations without framework grants choose to submit individual applications for funding for project establishment and positioning, they can receive maximum NOK 500,000 in funding under the scheme each year.

If multiple Norwegian applicants are collaborating on the same project proposal, those applicants that do not have a framework grant must submit a single, joint application for project establishment funding.

Who can participate in the project?

Requirements relating to the Project Owner
The organisation listed as the Project Owner in the application form must have approved the submission of the grant application.

The Project Owner must satisfy the formal requirements for participating in an EU project proposal.

If the application is a collaboration between several organisations, the Project Owner submits the application on behalf of all the partners.

Requirements relating to the project manager
The project manager’s scientific expertise and suitability to manage the project will be assessed. There are no formal requirements for the project manager’s qualifications.

What can you seek funding for?

You will find detailed and important information about what to enter in the project budget on our website.

The amount of funding awarded from PES will be based on the type of project, and the applicant’s role in, and the budget of, the planned EU project. The amount granted also depends on the number of Norwegian actors seeking funding. See 'Relevant thematic areas’ for a more detailed description of the funding amounts and terms and conditions for funding for different EU calls. The funding can cover costs relating to travel, participation in virtual and physical events and positioning and preparation of project proposals. All funding amounts constitute the maximum amount awarded. Funding to be awarded to each PES application will be determined on an individual basis. The pledged funding will be disbursed if the EU project proposal is formally approved as eligible. The funding must not be used to generate a profit. 

For EU project proposals with a two-stage submission scheme, 50 per cent of the funding will be disbursed for each stage. Separate rules apply to EIC Accelerator applications (read more under ‘Relevant thematic areas’ below).

Resubmission of proposals
Under certain conditions, you can apply for funding to resubmit a project proposal. The amount of funding granted will be considerably lower than for the first submission. If you wish to resubmit your proposal, you must send us the evaluation report you have received from the EU.

Conditions for funding
Applications targeting Eurostars and Accelerator are not eligible to receive funding for re-submission.

If we have announced that you can apply for funding to re-submit a project proposal, the funding amount will be significantly lower than for the initial submission. If you wish to re-submit your proposal, you must send us the evaluation report you have received from the EU.

De minimis aid
Support will be awarded to undertakings as de minimis aid. This means that an undertaking may receive maximum EUR 200,000 in de minimis aid over a period of three years.

Before the disbursement of de minimis aid, we will request written confirmation and an overview of all other de minimis aid the undertaking has received during the three last fiscal years. For undertakings that are part of a group of companies, the maximum limit generally applies to the group as a whole. For more information on de minimis aid, see the Commission Regulation (EU) No 1407/2013.

The state aid regulations make special requirements of undertakings that receive project funding from co-funded programmes, for instance Eurostars. Undertakings defined as ‘an undertaking in difficulty’ cannot expect to receive funding to write Eurostars applications. 

Read more about de minimis aid on our information page about the state aid rules.

Reports and disbursement of funding

Funding will be disbursed when we have received the final report and an electronic invoice from the applicant.

The final report will be published on My RCN Web and must contain the Evaluation Summary Report (ESR). If the application concerns Eurostars, you must send us a receipt showing your application’s eligibility.

You must send us an EHF invoice excluding VAT along with the final report.

Send the invoice electronically to the Research Council (

Relevant thematic areas for this call

Please select which of the Horizon Europe calls you are seeking project establishment funding for under ‘Placement’ in the application form.


Practical information

Requirements for this application type

This is an open-ended call and an application can only be submitted once, so do not click the ‘send’ button until you have finished the project outline and it is ready to be submitted.

General requirements:

  • The applicant/Project Owner must come from an eligible category of institutions.
  • The application must lie within the scope/satisfy the objectives of this call.
  • The funding amount sought, expenses to be covered and any own financing to be provided must be in keeping with the framework of the call.
  • The budget must be formulated correctly so that it clearly indicates what the funding will cover.
  • The application form must be completed in full.
  • The required attachments must be included using the dedicated templates.
  • The project description must provide answers to the items set out in the text of the call.
  • The application and all attachments must be written in Norwegian or English.
  • All attachments must be uploaded in the PDF format.

Mandatory attachments

  • Collaborative projects, ERC and MSCA: A project description. Use the standard template that can be downloaded at the bottom of the call.
  • Coordinator for a Horizon Europa collaboration project: The results of the Financial Viability Self-Check. Link: Financial viability self-check - H2020 Online Manual ( This is not required for Eurostars applications. 
  • Undertakings (SMEs) coordinating and participating in an Eurostars-application must upload documentation certifying that the SME has at least NOK 500 000 in equity when submitting the application to Eurostars. (Documentation requirements: Publicly approved annual accounts. Alternatively, in the event of a capital increase, there must be a declaration from the auditor, lawyer, financial institution/bank or accountant).
  • Accelerator: application assessment for step 1.
  • Municipalities that are going to prepare an Expression of Interest (EoI): copy of the EoI submitted to the EU.
  • Undertakings: A de minimis aid self-declaration. Download the template at the end of the call.

Applications that do not meet the requirements listed above will be rejected.

Assessment criteria

Grant applications will be assessed on the basis of the following criteria:


• The extent to which the concept is sound, credible and novel.

• The extent to which the project objectives are clear and relevant.
• The quality of the proposed deliverables from the project.


• The extent to which the expected effects are specified.
• The extent to which expected impacts on the system and societal levels are specified.

Knowledge sharing and exploitation
• The quality of the proposed communication and dissemination activities.
• The extent to which it is credible that the proposed outputs will contribute to the specified effects and impact.


Project Manager and project group
• The extent to which the Project Manager and project group are qualified and have the necessary expertise and are positioned to implement the project.
• The extent to which management structures and procedures are appropriate.

Plans and management
• The extent to which the work plan is clear and understandable, and the time table realistic
• The extent to which objectives and measures are coherent.
• The extent to which the project has the support of the leadership of the Project Owner and any partners, and the allocation of roles in the project is clear.
• The extent to which the budget is realistic and appropriate, and resources are allocated so that each of the partners can fulfil their role.
• The extent to which potential risks have been discussed.

Administrative procedures

Applications will be administratively processed. The Research Council normally sends out a reply letter no later than four weeks after the application has been received.

The project establishment funding for Horizon Europe is intended to help to lower the threshold for Norwegian applicants interested in taking part in a Horizon Europe project proposal. Requirements for obtaining EU funding are hard to satisfy. The Research Council therefore cannot provide support to applicants that do not have the necessary foundation for winning EU funding or implementing the planned project in a satisfactory manner. Applicants that do not satisfy the minimum requirements or that have not shown a positive development despite repeated attempts to win funding can therefore not expect to be awarded funding.

Occasionally, the Research Council may demand additional information in order to disburse the project establishment funding. Such demands may be a minimum score on the submitted EU application, or mandatory guidance from a national expert while preparing the proposal. Such demands may be raised in cases of doubt as to whether the applicant has the necessary funds to take part in the planned EU proposal, the history of the applicant in terms of the EU framework programmes, or the composition of the applicant consortium.

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