Contacts Contacts

Publications Publications

Joint Undertakings analysis of collaboration mechanisms with ESI Funds in a S3 context

View more

Related Links Related Links

Stairway to Excellence Stairway to Excellence

 The "Stairway to excellence (S2E)" project was launched in 2014 as a European Parliament pilot project executed by DG-JRC together with DG-REGIO. It is currently implemented as part of the JRC's Smart Specialisation targeted support activities.

S2E aims to support EU Member States and their regions in:
(i) developing and exploiting the synergies between European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF), Horizon 2020 (H2020) and other EU funding programmes and 
(ii) Assisting them in closing the innovation gap, in order to promote excellence in all regions and EU countries as well as 
(iii) Stimulating the effective implementation of national and regional Smart Specialisation Strategies.


  • Phases I and II of the S2E project were initially centred on the provision of assistance to the 13 Member States (EU13) who joined the European Union in 2004 and subsequent years. 
  • Phase III extended activities to EU28, with particular attention to the engagement of less developed EU28 regions, and a gradual shift in focus on the implementation aspects of synergies between different R&I funding instruments in specific thematic domains. 
  • Phase IV started on July 2018 for 24 months. The key objective is to support enhancement of the value of EU funding sources for research, regional development and innovation in RIS3 implementation, with a strategic focus on assuring preparedness of MS/regions for the post 2020 programming period in the area of Research and Innovation.

Events Events

4th meeting of the Working Group 'H2020 FOR RIS3' on optimizing the use of H2020 in implementing smart specialisation

The fourth meeting of the Working Group, organised as part of the Stairway to Excellence (S2E) project, is managed by JRC in cooperation with DG REGIO.

Smart Specialisation: monitoring and evaluation State of the play and next steps

Given its experimentalist and result-oriented approach, Smart Specialisation places a strong emphasis on the role of monitoring and evaluation.
View more

Related Documents Related Documents

Latest News Latest News

Consultation on Horizon Europe “European Partnerships”

Share your views on the 12 proposed institutionalised partnerships under Horizon Europe, the next EU research and innovation programme...

Consultation on the Horizon Europe Implementation strategy

The consultation on the “Orientations towards the Implementation Strategy of the research and Innovation framework programme Horizon Europe” is...

JRC and Climate KIC sign collaboration agreement

Vladimír Šucha, Director General, Joint Research Centre (JRC), and Kirsten Dunlop, Chief Executive Officer, Climate-KIC, have signed a...
View more