Current Horizon 2020 Call 'Sustainable Food Security – Resilient and resource-efficient value chains'

The following CSAs (coordination and support actions) and RIAs (research and innovation actions) with topics of interest to Africa-EU STI cooperation were published in October 2016 and remain open until 14 February 2017. Linked headlines will take you directly to the respective topic on the European Commission's Participant Portal.

(1st) Deadline for all listed below: 14 February 2017 (some follow 2-stage deadline model)

Click headlines to follow the links to the topics on the European Commission's Partcipant Portal.


Earth observation services for the monitoring of agricultural production in Africa

(single-stage)

The action should lead to substantially increasing the use of Earth observing capabilities and supporting application systems to produce timely, objective, reliable, and transparent crop and livestock production projection at the national and regional level for the African continent. It should support the GEOGLAM and AfriGEOSS initiatives and relevant aspects of the EU's development policy. Moreover, it should design and develop methods to assess/monitor agricultural production in Africa, taking into account its main drivers and the longer term impacts of its dynamics. Building on the outcomes of existing EU projects stimulating innovation for global agricultural monitoring – such as SIGMA–, the research and innovation activities should cover as a minimum all the following domains: crop and livestock identification and crop and livestock area estimation, crop and livestock condition and stress, yield prediction and forecasting, crop cover mapping, and the impact of extreme events on food production.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of up to EUR 10 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude the submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:

  • move projection of food supply and agricultural risk assessment at the level of the African continent beyond the current capability;
  • improve decision making capacity regarding food supply and management in Africa;
  • contribute to independent and neutral evaluation of agricultural production in Africa;
  • strengthen collaboration between EU and African organisations in the domain of food projection;
  • increased involvement of citizens and stakeholders in food production and food supply chain management in Africa, taking into account the gender dimension and women’s role in food production and supply;
  • provide a strong Earth observation building blocks for an EU-Africa Research and Innovation Partnership focusing on food and nutrition security and sustainable agriculture;
    improve participation of African organisations in GEO and Copernicus (GMES & Africa initiative);
  • foster cooperation with initiatives developing the Global Framework for Climate Services (GFCS) in African countries;
  • contribute to implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular SDG 2 'End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture' and SDG 13 'Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts

Cross-cutting Priorities: Gender, International cooperation


Support to the development and implementation of FOOD 2030 - a European research and innovation policy framework for food and nutrition security

(single-stage)

This action is expected to contribute to the further development and implementation of the European Commission FOOD 2030 initiative, as a response to the Milan World Expo process, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the COP21 commitments. The action will serve as a platform for multi-actor engagement and awareness-raising in support of the initiative and its action plan. In particular, the scope of this coordination and support action (CSA) will be to explore possible research and innovation breakthroughs bringing on board a wide diversity of actors, and when appropriate, youth and children. Furthermore it will facilitate dialogue and co-creation between Member State funding and programming authorities (ex: SCAR and JPI, etc.) for improved policy alignment and leveraging of funds. This action will also provide evidence and strategic intelligence on trends in food systems and food systems research in Europe (region and country level), and globally. It will design hands-on future-oriented training (primary and secondary school and university levels) on food systems science and innovation, produce any other relevant training, communication and dissemination material adapted to different stakeholders and assess and showcase key findings, good practices, networks, case studies, EU projects and demonstrations in food systems R&I. It should take into account the output of envisaged EC funded expert support for the implementation of FOOD 2030.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of up to EUR 4 million would allow this challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:

To contribute to the further development and implementation of the European Commission's FOOD 2030 initiative and ensuing action plan to connect, structure and scale-up research and innovation for food and nutrition security in Europe, but in a global context. The CSA will serve to mobilise a wide diversity of actors and experts to:

  • raise awareness and help increase the outreach and impacts of European R&I outcomes and initiatives in the field of Food and Nutrition Security.
  • contribute to strengthen R&I policy coherence and programme alignment.

Cross-cutting Priorities: Open Innovation, Socio-economic science and humanities, Gender, Open Science, International cooperation


Supporting international cooperation activities on agriculture soil contribution to climate change mitigation and adaptation

(single-stage)

Proposals should cover the topic of soil carbon sequestration and its links with climate change mitigation from the perspective of the agricultural sector. Other areas to be tackled should include land (use) management within the scope of this topic. Participation of initiatives such as the Global Research Alliance (GRA), the Joint Programming Initiative on Sustainable Agriculture, Food Security and Climate Change (FACCE) or the 4 per 1000 initiative is encouraged.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of up to EUR 2.5 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude the submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:

  • Improved understanding of agricultural soil carbon sequestration in different pedo-climatic conditions.
  • International Research Community on agricultural soil strengthened
  • Provide the basis for a more structured approach towards the issue, for instance with the establishment of an International Research Consortium (IRC).

Cross-cutting Priorities: International cooperation

Organic inputs – contentious inputs in organic farming

(two-stage; 2nd deadline: 13 September 2017)

Projects should provide a comprehensive overview of the current use of and need for external inputs in various types of organic plant and animal farming systems. Activities proposed should be aimed at reducing or gradually phasing out contentious inputs without compromising the competitiveness of the organic sector. Work shall identify and develop alternatives to contentious inputs and analyse the socio-economic conditions required for their adoption. The products and management practices developed should be tested in different pedo-climatic and farming conditions in the EU, allowing for wide geographical coverage within Europe, associated countries and relevant third countries. Projects should take into account the results and conclusions of previous research projects in the area. Proposals should fall under the concept of the 'multi-actor approach'.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of up to EUR 4 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude the submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:

  • widely accessible and cost-efficient alternatives to contentious inputs in organic farming. Better knowledge of alternatives will also allow for reduced inputs in conventional agriculture;
  • enhanced organic production, quality and stability;
  • reduced environmental impact of organic and low-input farming systems;
  • fair, reliable and implementable rules on the use of inputs in organic production; and
  • provision of scientific support for relevant EU policies.

Cross-cutting Priorities: International cooperation


Research and approaches for emerging diseases and pests in plants and terrestrial livestock

(two-stage; 2nd deadline: 13 September 2017)

Proposals will contribute to understanding the drivers of emergence and to finding adequate responses to emerging pests and diseases in plants (work on Xylella fastidiosa is excluded under this call topic) and emerging infectious diseases in terrestrial animals. They will target one or more of the pests and diseases threatening EU agriculture/forestry (regulated or non-regulated, invasive or native) and causing significant economic losses, such as African Swine Fever. The choice of target species should consider the potential threat in terms of development and spread as well as potential impact on agricultural production, public health, or trade. Proposals should increase knowledge on the biology, development and spread of pests/diseases. They should improve methods and strategies for risk assessment, prevention and containment and enlarge the range of tools for integrated and sustainable pest/disease management. International cooperation with countries affected or threatened by the same pest(s)/disease(s) is encouraged.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of up to EUR 5 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude the submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:

Knowledge and solutions generated by this action should contribute to:

  • understanding drivers for pest/disease emergence;
  • improved management of pests/diseases by the farming and forestry sectors;
  • development of environmentally sound tools for the prevention, detection and diagnosis, of pests/diseases;
  • reduction of economic losses by the farming and forestry sectors;
  • improved food quality and food safety; and
  • implementation of EU plant and animal health policies.

Cross-cutting Priorities: International cooperation


Validation of diagnostic tools for animal and plant health

(single-stage)

The projects aim to harmonise and validate (including through ring trials) existing and new protocols for the detection and quantification of pathogens and other factors of concern for the health of plants and terrestrial animals, and correlates of infection/immunity. Work will build on existing knowledge and resources, and support the further development of promising existing protocols to deliver close-to-market end-products, including swift, portable tools for field testing. Cooperation among stakeholders is encouraged to ensure the use of generic technologies for a broader spectrum of organisms. There should be liaison with EU and international reference and standardisation bodies.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of up to EUR 3 million would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless this does not preclude the submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected Impact:

  • validated protocols for the detection and quantification of pathogens and correlates of infection/immunity;
  • support for plant and animal health policies in the form of validated protocols to be used by competent authorities and reference laboratories;
  • the bringing to the market of end-products, such as swift, portable tools for field-testing by veterinarians, practitioners and business operators.

Cross-cutting Priorities: International cooperation


Source and more funding opportunities: Participant Portal