Update on AEC advocacy activities – December 2021

In the uncertain times in which we live, one of the reliable constants that higher music education institutions situated in the European Union (EU) can count on, is the accessibility of EU funding programs:

  • The Erasmus+ budget for the years 2021 to 2027 has almost doubled compared to the budget for the years 2014 to 2020 and now amounts to 26,2 billion €. It is true that the amounts cannot be compared one-to-one because also the number of eligible applicants has increased significantly, both in terms of eligible target groups and eligible countries. However, this is partly compensated by the fact that such a populous country as the UK ceased to have access to Erasmus funds. All in all, the bottom line is still a noticeable increase in the budget available for the higher education sector and for mobility activities in this area.
  • The European research funding program 2021 to 2027, Horizon Europe, turns out to be slightly more art-friendly than its predecessor Horizon 2020. Above all, the call ‘Research and innovation on cultural heritage and Cultural and Creative Industries’, which closed at the beginning of October 2021, generated a remarkable response among the community of researchers in the field of music and, for the first time ever, triggered a significant number of research consortia to include AEC as an organisation in their applications. 
  • The same applies to the Creative Europe Cooperation Calls 2021. 
  • Last but not least, AEC’s recent application for a Creative Europe Network grant was accepted and the project will start in January 2022, with the aim to involve as many AEC members as possible.

Finally, the European Commission itself launched a transparent and user-friendly CulturEU Funding Guide and webtool that will certainly be very helpful and useful for the AEC members. CulturEU is available as an interactive online webtool and as a printable guidebook and provides a comprehensive overview on the funding opportunities for the cultural and creative sectors in EU programs 2021-2027. It covers opportunities linked to 21 EU funding programs (from the LIFE programme related to environment to Digital Europe and EU Structural Funds) that can support projects with a cultural and creative dimension. Stakeholders can automatically filter relevant funding opportunities based on their needs, their sector and the type of organisation they represent. CulturEU is announced to be regularly updated and to be available in all EU languages ​​in the first quarter of 2022.