Missions for EU research and innovation

The mission-oriented research and innovation policy adopted in Horizon Europe is a welcomed approach to address challenges faced by people in their daily lives. From a research and innovation perspective it is also an opportunity to reduce policy fragmentation, interdisciplinarity and cross-sectoral collaboration, and strengthen public engagement through the involvement of regional and local innovation ecosystems. As such, the missions bottom-up nature, flexibility, and the clear involvement of citizens going hand in hand with the excellence is a welcome addition to Horizon Europe.

From the first discussions and the Mazzucato report to the selection of the five mission areas and the publication of the interim reports in the summer of 2020, ERRIN has been actively involved in bringing in the regional and local perspective, and exploring what opportunities the missions could provide for regions and cities. In October 2020 ERRIN submitted its input paper on the Horizon Europe missions. Below you will find more information about our work on the different missions.

EU missions

ERRIN's messages on Horizon Europe Missions Work Programmes 2023-2024

May 2022

ERRIN's work on the Horizon Europe missions

Read more about our work related to the five mission areas.

Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities

The EU Mission on 100 Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities by 2030 will support 112 European cities in their systemic transformation towards climate neutrality by 2030. The mission aims to create a bottom-up approach towards achieving climate neutrality supported by a Climate City Contract, which requires the participation of the entire local ecosystem and support from all governance levels.

ERRIN has actively contributed to shaping and implementing the Mission on 100 Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities by 2030 through the development of several input papers and organisation of events and discussions with the European Commission. The latest input was a letter on cities' concerns (November 2021) focusing on the selection criteria and evaluation process for the Expression of Interest, the Climate City Contract and the Mission Label. 


Adaptation to climate change

The Mission on Adaptation to Climate Change will support EU regions, cities and local authorities in their efforts to build resilience against the impacts of climate change. The vision is to turn the urgent challenge of adapting to climate change into an opportunity to make Europe more resilient, climate prepared and fair. The objective is to support at least 150 European regions and communities to become climate resilient by 2030 and enable large-scale transformations of 75 demonstrators.

ERRIN has followed the Mission closely and contributed to its shaping and implementation through the development of input papers, organisation of events and discussions with the Mission Secretariat. ERRIN became a Friend of the Mission in 2022, alongside 130 of its member cities and regions, and provided input on the Mission Charter

Green leaves


The Mission on Cancer aims to improve the lives of more than 3 million people through prevention and cure, as well as support individuals and their families affected by cancer to have longer and better lives by supporting the EU's Beating Cancer Plan. The Mission will oversee the creation of the EU Platform UNCAN.eu, the European Cancer Patient Digital Centre and a network of Comprehensive Cancer Infrastructures.

In 2020, ERRIN developed and released a joint statement with EUREGHA calling for the regional dimension of the Mission to be clearly defined and included in its design and implementation. In 2021, the Health WG held meetings on the state of play of the Cancer Mission and cancer policy more widely, and continued to follow the implementation of the Mission in 2022 and 2023.

national cancer institute

Restore our ocean and waters by 2030

Mission Restore our Ocean and Waters by 2030 aims to protect and restore the health of our ocean and waters through research and innovation, citizen engagement and blue investments. The Mission strives to reach these goals by deploying innovative solutions at basin scale, with each basin focusing on a particular area in the developing and piloting phase (2021-2025). Phase two (2026 - 2030) will focus on deployment and upscaling, with the replication of pilot activities. The scale-up actions would be carried out through annual calls for expressions of interest from 2025 onwards to macro-regions, regions and communities looking to become Mission scale-up sites.

ERRIN has closely followed the Mission since 2020, and organised in June 2021, together with the Mission Secretariat, an informal dialogue on the area-based lighthouses anticipated in the Mission, focussing on the lighthouses' activities, their scale and governance. The dialogue report includes ERRIN's key messages and outcomes relating to the scope, scale, governance and synergies of the lighthouses within the Missions. In 2022, ERRIN provided input on the Mission Charter, which was shared with the Mission Secretariat.

Jakob Owens on Unsplash

A Soil Deal for Europe

The Mission: A Soil Deal for Europe aims to establish 100 living labs and lighthouses to lead the transition towards healthy soils by 2030. 

ERRIN has, through its Bioeconomy Working Group, followed the Mission since 2021 through the organisation of information sessions and dialogues with the Mission Secretariat. In February 2021, the Bioeconomy Working Group organised an information session on the Mission, which was followed up in November 2021 with a meeting to discuss the role of regions in the Mission. In March 2022, an information session was set up in which ERRIN members exchanged ongoing soil activities and projects in the regions. 

Spade in soil

Latest Updates

  • By Gaia Ialisa Marotta

A year and a half of building resilience together – RESIST project wrapped

The RESIST project, aimed at enhancing climate resilience across twelve EU regions, has made significant progress over the past year and a half. Four frontrunner regions are leading the way in testing climate adaptation solutions, paired with regions facing similar challenges. Key achievements include boosting regional ecosystems, developing a needs assessment methodology, creating a transfer methodology for innovations, building digital twins for climate scenario modelling, compiling a repository of climate adaptation practices, producing a series of project videos, and launching "The Stitch" newsletter to keep stakeholders informed. The project follows the "quintuple helix" innovation model, ensuring solutions are scalable and based on real challenges.

  • By Lucy Hammond

ERRIN Paper Series: Towards the 10th Framework Programme - EU Missions

ERRIN is pleased to launch a series of input papers on the 10th Framework Programme, with this paper focusing on EU Missions. ERRIN has been closely involved in the design and implementation of the EU Missions since their inception, making them a priority for the network. This input paper on the role of EU Missions in FP10 has been created with contributions from ERRIN members and their ecosystems.

  • By Heidi Johansson

CLIMAAX second open call for regions

The second CLIMAAX call for regions and communities is open between 1 July and 15 October 2024. The call aims to provide both financial and practical support to enhance regional climate and emergency risk management plans. The deadline for proposals is 15 October 2024.

  • By Silvia Ghiretti

Call for new Leaders: Energy and Climate Change Working Group

ERRIN’s Energy and Climate Change Working Group is looking for two new leaders to join the leadership team composed of Scotland Europa, Oslo Region EU Office, Cities Northern Netherlands and West Finland EU Office. Express your interest by Friday 16 August!

  • By Francesca Pozzebon

3rd REINFORCING Open Call on EU Missions

The REINFORCING project has opened a call to support organisations and territories that actively contribute to the EU Missions by engaging relevant stakeholders, including citizens, in the R&I process and/or policies connected to one of the Missions. Successful proposals will receive up to 60,000 euros to implement a 12-month project. The deadline for submitting proposals is 26 September 2024.

  • By Ewa Chomicz

ERRIN two-pager for European decision-makers

ERRIN is pleased to share a two-pager for the incoming European decision-makers, aiming to present the network and our value to the new MEPs, raising a voice for the importance of place-based R&I in the changing landscape. We encourage all ERRIN members to share the document with their MEPs to introduce ERRIN and the value of place-based R&I.