This page provides information about the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA). Part of Horizon Europe, the MSCA are the European Union’s flagship funding programme for doctoral education and postdoctoral training of researchers.
Here you will find information about the objectives of the MSCA and the types of funding available.
The European Research Executive Agency (REA) manages the MSCA on behalf of the European Commission.
Objectives of the MSCA
The Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions fund excellent research and innovation and equip researchers at all stages of their career with new knowledge and skills, through mobility across borders and exposure to different sectors and disciplines. The MSCA help build Europe’s capacity for research and innovation by investing in the long-term careers of excellent researchers.
The MSCA also fund the development of excellent doctoral and postdoctoral training programmes and collaborative research projects worldwide. By doing so, they achieve a structuring impact on higher education institutions, research centres and non-academic organisations.
The MSCA promote excellence and set standards for high-quality researcher education and training in line with the European Charter for Researchers and the Code of Conduct for the recruitment of researchers.
The principles underlying the programme are
- The MSCA support excellent researchers. They also foster excellence in research and innovation collaborations, knowledge transfer, methodologies and content, as well as in training, supervision and career guidance.
- The MSCA support the mobility of researchers between countries, sectors and disciplines to acquire new knowledge, skills and competences.
Bottom-up and open to the world
- The MSCA are open to all domains of research and innovation and encourage international cooperation to set-up strategic collaborations.
Excellent recruitment, working conditions and inclusiveness
- The MSCA promote the principles of the European Charter for Researchers and Code of Conduct for the Recruitment of Researchers for the recruitment, working and employment conditions of researchers.
Effective supervision and career guidance
- The MSCA promote effective supervision and adequate mentoring and career guidance. This contributes to creating a supportive environment for the researchers to work. The Guidelines for MSCA Supervision provide recommendations in this regard.
Open science and responsible research and innovation
- The MSCA support Open Science and Responsible Research and Innovation.
European Green Deal
- The MSCA support bottom-up and frontier/applied research supporting the European Green Deal and tackling climate and environmental-related challenges. The MSCA Green Charter provides recommendations in this regard.
- The MSCA promote strong links with the Cohesion policy funds and the Recovery and Resilience Facility.
MSCA under Horizon Europe
Following feedback from various stakeholders, there are a number of changes to the MSCA under Horizon Europe (2021-2027), compared to the previous programme Horizon 2020 (2014-2020). The budget for the MSCA under Horizon Europe is €6.6 billion.
Some of the main changes include
- streamlined actions
- harmonizes rules
- stronger emphasis on supervision
- greener MSCA
To reflect this evolution, the actions have also changed names. See table below to compare.
Horizon 2020 actions compared to Horizon Europe
|Horizon 2020||Horizon Europe|
|Innovative Training Networks (ITN)||Doctoral Networks (DN)|
|Individual Fellowships (IF)||Postdoctoral Fellowships (PF)|
|Research and Innovation Staff Exchange (RISE)||Staff Exchanges (SE)|
|Co-funding of regional, national and international programmes (COFUND)||COFUND (no change)|
|European Researchers’ Night (NIGHT)||MSCA and Citizens|