Marie Curie COFUND

For whom?

Organisations, companies and knowledge institutes who want to employ researchers

For what?

High-quality fellowships or doctoral programmes

When to apply?

23 April until 26 September 2024

Need advice?

The Marie Curie COFUND (MSCA COFUND) programme aims to stimulate high-quality fellowship or doctoral programmes. It funds international, inter-sectoral and interdisciplinary research training, as well as transnational and cross-sectoral mobility of researchers in Europe.

Marie Curie COFUND topics

COFUND is a bottom-up programme, meaning that the applying organisation decides on the overarching topic. The topic can be scientific or non-scientific and should connect different disciplines within one organisation or several connected organisations. For example, a university can set up a programme that initiates translational research, or a group of universities in a specific region can set up a programme that attracts and supports talented female researchers.

Proposal guidelines

COFUND can take the form of a Doctoral Programme (for PhD students) or a Fellowship programme (for post docs). COFUND proposals have a similar structure as Marie Skłodowska-Curie Doctoral Networks (previously known as Innovative Training Networks (ITN)). The difference with Doctoral Networks is that COFUND funds local initiatives instead of international ones.

However, the allocated researchers have to comply with the mobility rule, meaning that they must not have resided in the country of the beneficiary for more than 12 months in the last 3 years. Furthermore, linking Partner Organisations to your proposal is highly recommended. These can be from any sector, any organisation and any country in the world. All these factors influence the international, intersectoral and interdisciplinary aspects of your proposal.


Financial support for COFUND is based on a lump sum, the so called “COFUND allowance”, that is calculated per recruited researcher per month (see below for details). This represents an important change to the funding strategy under H2020: here instead of a lump sum, 50% of the employment and living allowances and the management costs were funded. Under the new programme the COFUND allowance can be used for a wide range of costs associated with the enrolled researcher, such as: salary (including full social security coverage), mobility costs, costs related to training, research expenses, transfer of knowledge and networking activities, costs of managing the action and indirect costs.

Funding for doctoral programmes is based on the standard number of years that a PhD takes to complete in the country of the beneficiary. This means that for The Netherlands, Doctoral programmes receive funding for 48 months for each researcher. Selected proposals can receive funding up to a total amount of € 10 million per proposal. In 2024, the overall indicative budget is € 104.80 million.

Examples of COFUND programme funding

Funding of Doctoral Programme: EU COFUND contribution (per person/month)
Doctoral Candidate COFUND allowance € 2.800,-
Example: Total funding for 4 years, for 20 Doctoral Candidates: € 2.688.000,-
Funding of Fellowship Programme: EU COFUND contribution (per person/month)
Post-Doc COFUND allowance € 3.980,-
Example: Total funding for 4 years, for 20 Post-Docs: € 3.820.800,-

Hezelburcht and COFUND support

Interested in applying? Our specialists would be pleased to support you with reviewing or drafting an application. Hezelburcht has supported several successful MSCA COFUND applications, such as the ALERT, PROMINENT and ARCAID programme. For a successful application it is important to start as soon as possible with preparing a proposal, so don’t hesitate and contact us via 088 495 20 00 or


Interested in our services and expertise? Please feel free to contact us via 088 495 20 00 or for more information or an introductory meeting free of charge. Or fill in the form below: