Research Funding Instruments

The funding of a research project is a fundamental pillar of its structure. Unfortunately, most of the time it is quite complicated to find reference sites to determine which financing options are the ones that can benefit your project the most. Fortunately, if you are a researcher in the Basque Country, you can apply to a number of institutions to get funding for your research.

In this page you will find a brief orientation guide on financing options for projects, both at international and local level.

What's the EU Comission?

The European Commission helps to shape the EU's overall strategy, proposes new EU laws and policies, monitors their implementation and manages the EU budget. It also plays a significant role in supporting international development and delivering aid.

The European Commission is responsible for preparing and proposing a draft budget for the European Union as a whole.

The European Commission is ultimately responsible for managing the EU budget, although in practice about 80% of EU funding is managed under programmes jointly administered by the European Commission and national authorities in the EU countries.

How to apply to this funding?

The European Commission helps fund projects and organisations which contribute to the implementation of EU programmes and policies. It grants funding through calls for proposals and projects. About 80% of EU funding is granted through programmes managed in the EU countries themselves. Where the European Commission directly manages funding, it does so by awarding grants, launching tendering procedures, etc. Click here for more detailed information about funding managed directly by the Commission.

To get funding for your project, you will need to identify a relevant call for proposals/projects and carefully follow the specific guidelines on how to apply – each call is unique. Your project will compete for funding with projects submitted by other applicants for that call.

To be eligible for funding, you may need look for a project partner in other countries.

To find details of individual calls:

1. Search funding opportunities by topic

2. Check the list of funding programmes


The Spanish Gobernment manages the funding of research through the "State Agency for Research" (Agencia Estatal de Investigación), which is an instrument of the Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities. Its purpose is to guarantee accountability, improve and extend the monitoring of actions, streamline the management of available funds, reduce administrative burdens and simplify and standardize procedures. This new management model must allow a substantive improvement in the planning of actions and provide the calls for the stability required by research activities.

Click here for more information about Spanish State Agency's funding programmes.

The Basque Gobernment manages the funding of research through the different departments, although basic research is mainly managed through the Department of Education, the Department of Economic Development and Infraestructures and the Department of Health. There are a number of instruments through which funding can be obtained for research, ranging from predoctoral grants to research groups or even research institutions funding programes.

Click here for more information about Basque research funding programmes.


As in many other regiones, private funding is not as developed as public funding. Nevertheless, these sources have to be taken into account, as more and more companies show their commitment to the promotion of scientific research and its projection to society. Thus, many big companies include in their Corporate Social Responsibility the funding of research projects to foster our knowledge in certain fields (depending on each call).

Here we include a list o the biggest calls offered by private companies to researchers or research groups:

1. Fundación BBVA

2. Ramón y Cajal health research institute (IRYCIS)

3. Obra Social La Caixa

4. Fundación Repsol

5. Fundación Banco Santander

6. Fundación Iberdrola


New technologies have led to the emergence of new forms of financing such as Crowfunding. This new model has broken into the market, constituting a real opportunity to promote research projects. There are many crowfunding platforms which we encourage to explore, but to mention one, from FECYT is a new crowfunding website focused on funding for scientific projects.