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ENGAGE.EU Research Label


The first ENGAGE.EU Call for innovative bottom-up scientific initiatives is now open!

Academics from ENGAGE.EU universities (Hanken, Luiss, NHH, Tilburg University, UMA, UNWE, URL, UT Capitole, WU) are invited to submit proposals for bottom-up scientific initiatives through the availability of seed funding.

This call aims to encourage ENGAGE.EU scientific collaborations and foster new opportunities to develop initiatives across the alliance. Senior researchers and early-stage researchers, including PhD students, are encouraged to participate in this call.

The ENGAGE.EU research label funds smaller scale, limited in time, bottom-up initiatives, to facilitate the initiation of potential long-term collaborative activities within the alliance. This contributes to the fulfilment of the ENGAGE.EU’s vision and mission, with a focus on supporting early-stage researchers.

Application deadline is 10 June 2024 CET.

Download the PDF version here

Eligible Initiatives

To be eligible, applications must:

  • connect at least three partner universities of the alliance but we strongly encourage involving four or more ENGAGE.EU partners
  • be related to at least one societal challenge (SDG – 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals)
  • not already receive Horizon Europe or Erasmus + funding for this specific Initiative (i.e., no double EU funding of activities); also the ENGAGE.EU research label cannot fund/support any initiatives aiming at applying for EU funding either.

Engaging and involving ENGAGE.EU external partners and stakeholders*, while not mandatory, is strongly encouraged.

*By ‘external partners and stakeholders,’ we refer to societal organisations, enterprises, municipalities, and NGOs. Our alliance will assist you in identifying and connecting with suitable affiliated partners (see ENGAGE.EU local contact points in paragraph 7).

Candidates are also invited to explain if and how their initiative relates to the Strategic Agenda [1] of the alliance.

The ENGAGE.EU research label funding aims to support initiative of scientific collaborations in their early stages. Therefore, seed-funded initiatives can fit under a wide variety of definitions such as:

Examples of eligible activities:

Joint workshop


Cross-disciplinary seminar

Dissemination event/content for the public at large

Research training

Conducting surveys, developing research materials

Preparation for large-scale proposal**

Producing awareness-raising material for the Alliance

Joint publications

** Remember that the label cannot fund/support any initiatives aiming at applying at EU funding.

This list above is non-exhaustive, the Selection Committee will consider applications suggesting other initiatives too, provided they clearly state how they match the scope of the seed funding scheme.

Initiatives taking place online are eligible.

[1] ENGAGE.EU R&I Thematic focus are: Digitalisation; Sustainability and Climate change; Health and Well-being; Diversity; Strong Institutions

For the initial call, funding will be up to 8.500 EUR per initiative with a total ceiling of 25.500 EUR.

Please note: each partner’s home university will receive and manage their funding. As a result, the proposal must clearly outline how the budget will be distributed among the partner universities.

Example 1: a workshop involving partners from Tilburg University, NHH and URL is scheduled at UNWE. The lead applicant will describe the distribution of funding among the participating universities. For instance, UNWE will cover the cost of hosting the event which amounts to 1.500 EUR, while Tilburg University, NHH and URL will cover the travel costs for their researchers attending the workshop in Sofia, at 2.000 EUR each. The Selection Committee will then grant 1.500 EUR to UNWE for meals and/or rental of a conference room, while Tilburg University, NHH and URL will each receive 2.000 EUR each to cover their respective travel costs.

Example 2: a team of five researchers from WU, Hanken and Luiss are seeking to collaborate on writing a scientific paper. One author from WU takes the lead and proposes to purchase a dataset for 3.500 EUR, while the other researchers require 5.000 EUR to cover their travel expenses for a writing week.

The lead applicant should provide a detailed and accurate budget that clearly shows how the funds will be distributed among the initiatives’ partners. This will help to identify and address any potential overspending issues. It is important to note that ENGAGE.EU research label’s seed funding will not cover any overspending of the total budget.

A template budget sheet is available in the annexes.

Additional funding (co-funding) from other sources is permitted, even encouraged, providing those applicants do not receive Horizon Europe or Erasmus + funds (i.e., no double EU funding of activities). The ENGAGE.EU research label cannot fund or support any initiatives that aim to apply for EU funding either.

After the Selection Committee announces the winning proposal(s), the home university of each applicant will be responsible for monitoring spending and ensuring compliance with eligible costs, in accordance with both their internal budgetary rules and Erasmus+ regulations.

Eligible Costs

All expenses directly related to the initiative are eligible if they are listed in the estimated budget and incurred in connection with the expected results while adhering to the internal budgetary rules of the respective university responsible for spending the grant. Costs must be identifiable, verifiable and comply with the principle of sound financial management, particularly regarding economy and efficiency. 

      Examples of eligible costs***

Travel and subsistence costs (flights and train ticket, car rental, lodging, insurance, daily allowance, etc…)

Costs of hosting seminars/conferences or workshops (e.g., venue rental, catering, lodging, etc…)

Purchase of equipment or data

Publications costs

Open access fees

***This list above is not-exhaustive. To determine if specific expenses are eligible, applicants must check with their university’s internal budgetary rules. Therefore, it is highly recommended to contact the ENGAGE.EU local contact points (see the section below) before submitting the application.

Selection Process and Evaluation Criteria

The ENGAGE.EU Selection Committee comprises nine academics each from a different partner university. Their role is to evaluate, select, and oversee funded proposals. The Selection Committee may seek advice from external assessors.

To assess all applications, the Selection Committee will apply the following criteria and sub-criteria:

QUALITY – objectives and goals of the initiative; scientific content; participants complementarity; link to SDGs and to the alliance Strategic Agenda; innovativeness.

FEASIBILITY – practical description of the initiative; realistic budget and workplan.

IMPACT – number of participating universities from the alliance; potential impact for society and on the alliance as a whole; involvement of external partners and stakeholders; dissemination; sustainability and scalability.

Reporting and Dissemination

Final report

A final report is expected to be submitted via email to no later than 30 days after the funding period ends.

It should contain a concise explanatory summary and a sufficiently detailed financial report to assist the task team in evaluating the initiative’s performance and assessing the effectiveness of the seed-funded label.

Your ENGAGE.EU local contact point (refer to the section below) can send a report template to the lead applicants in advance.

Dissemination and credits

The ENGAGE.EU website will publish a summary of each funded initiative. Therefore, the lead applicant is expected to document the initiative, take photographs to illustrate it, and prepare a short summary (in the form of a post or story). The summary should be sent to within 30 days after the funding period ends.  The ENGAGE.EU local contact points are available to assist with organizing events or communicating about your initiative and findings.

All results and dissemination materials must acknowledge the funding received from ENGAGE.EU following these guidelines. The same applies to any events organised as part of the initiative:

  • Logo of both ENGAGE.EU and Erasmus+ used on the initiative’s communication materials.
  • Mention ENGAGE.EU at the opening of the event.
  • Take photographs to illustrate the publication of the results. Record the photo credits for each photo and ensure that individuals have given their consent to be photographed.

Application and Timeline

Two filled files – the application form (available HERE) together with the budget sheet available (HERE) need to be submitted electronically to by the deadline: 12:00 pm (CET) – 10 June 2024. It will not be possible to apply after the deadline.

Applications must be submitted in English.

One application per initiative needs to be submitted.

Call open (Spring call)

29 April 2024

Call close/application deadline

10 June 2024

Results announced

15 July 2024

Funding period

September 2024 to December 2025

Online summary and financial report submitted

Respectively 30 days after the conclusion of the initiative

The timeline might be subject to changes, considering the administrative and financial processes.

Applicant will submit the online application (i.e., application form and budget sheet) to the address

For additional questions, each applicant may reach out to their ENGAGE.EU local contact point at his/her university or write to

ENGAGE.EU Local Contact Points

Each applicant can contact his/her local university’s ENGAGE.EU team member for questions specifically related to his/her institution and this call:

Hanken School of Economics: Dr. Sirpa Aalto,

Luiss University: Aurora Alegiani:

NHH Norwegian School of Economics: Dr. Heather Arghandeh Paudler,

Tilburg University: Rianne Strijker,

University of Mannheim: Sati Cakar,

University of National and World Economy: Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hristina Harizanova-Bartos,

Ramon Llull University: Ana Caellas Camprubi,

UT Capitole: Myriam Greusard,

WU Vienna: Rina Gjana,

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Will an online info session be organised?

An information session was held on 14 May 2024, a video recording of which can be viewed below as well as the presentated slides HERE.

  • How can I find initiative partners in other ENGAGE.EU universities?

You can search for potential partners on the ENGAGE.EU Research Community Platform, and you can also contact your ENGAGE.EU local contact point who will assist you in identifying and connecting with suitable partners (see paragraph 7).

  • Can we involve researchers from outside the alliance to participate in the call?

Yes, you can. However, any partner outside the alliance involved in your initiative will not benefit from ENGAGE.EU research label funding.

  • How detailed should the provisional budget be?

Listing all costs associated with the budget’s activities is crucial. However, the provisional budget should not be automatically set to the maximum amount. Please note that the compliance of the expenses will be checked by the applicant’s home university, and not by the ENGAGE.EU research label team.