Applying for funds

Calls for project applications will be launched regularly, approximately two per year from 2015 onwards. Calls for applications will be announced on the NPA website well in advance of the deadline, so it is worth checking for regular updates. Relevant information will also be distributed by the Regional Contact Points and Monitoring Committee members. Additional promotional material and activities may be used to widely publicise the calls. 

The Monitoring Committee may decide on a specific focus or special requirements for individual calls. The call for applications and guidance will clearly outline any special requirements. 

For preparatory projects, a continuous call system is in place, meaning that project applicants can be submitted at any time. Note that focused calls and special calls for preparatory projects are launched throughout the programme period. Please find the latest information on the preparatory project call page or contact your Regional Contact Point, alternatively the Joint Secretariat.

In general, the programme is open for public and private partners of all kinds from inside the programme area, for example regional and local authorities and other public sector organisations, research institutions and private entities delivering public service, private-public partnerships, social enterprises, and third sector organisations. Besides that, local and regional SMEs, among these specifically micro enterprises in remote and sparsely populated areas and business organisations, etc.

Eligible partners include:

  • National, regional and local authorities 
  • Regional and local development agencies, chambers of commerce
  • Universities, colleges, higher education, research institutions
  • Non-governmental organisations (NGOs)
  • Sectoral agencies and business support organisation
  • Voluntary sector organisations 
  • Other relevant organisations contributing to the development of the programme area
  • Micro, and small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs)

Ensuring the correct mix of transnational partners in a project is crucial to achieving genuine transnational cooperation and successful results. In general, all partners should have the capacity and knowledge in the project subject area to participate fully and to deliver the products and/or services.

For main projects, at least three eligible project partners from three different programme partner countries are required, of which one must be from an EU Member State. In addition, all partners need to have the administrative and adequate resources required to participate in a transnational projects. Furthermore, all partners are required to provide supporting documents required by the MA, Joint Secretariat, First Level Controllers, or auditors. 

Projects shall first of all address the main challenges and potentials of the programme area. The Programme area is characterised by shared and common development resources, including the area’s abundant natural resources, high quality biophysical environment, and versatile business sector. However, in terms of development challenges and opportunities, peripherality combined with low population density is identified as the key shared challenge for the Programme Area. A range of development issues, such as weak access to key markets, lack of critical mass and higher costs for service delivery and influences the NPA region’s local economies, rural development, demography, labour markets and governance.

The aim of the NPA Programme is to foster change within the wider Programme Area, not only for project team members directly involved in the approved projects. Projects are expected to deliver viable products and services, whose impact should contribute to programme level results. Each of the Priority axis have been designed to focus project applicants on delivering tangible, durable outputs,  assisting the delivery of the programme’s ambitions of measurable positive changes in the Programme area. Each project's intended results and outputs are expected to facilitate the changes sought by the NPA Programme. 

To align with the Programme’s results sought, each project should select the most appropriate Priority Axis, and inside this, the most appropriate specific objective. See chapter 1 of the Programme Manual for an explanation of changes sought under each specific objective, e.g. as attitude change, an openness to new approaches, an improved entrepreneurial business environment, a change in awareness and public policy or an increased preparedness. On programme level, the results are expressed and measured in result indicators. More information about expectations for project results and outputs can be found in chapter 2 of the Programme Manual