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European Commission Representation in Cyprus
News article3 July 2023Representation in Cyprus3 min read

Erasmus+: New funding for European Universities alliances boosts cooperation in higher education

Today, the Commission announced the results of the 2023 Erasmus+ call for the European Universities initiative, which provides support to alliances of higher education institutions.


These European University alliances are bringing together a new generation of Europeans who are able to study and work in different European countries, different languages, and across sectors and academic disciplines. Thanks to these alliances, students can obtain a degree by combining studies in several European countries, which contributes to the international competitiveness of higher education institutions in Europe. 

With today's results, adding seven new European Universities alliances, the total of 50 alliances now involve more than 430 higher education institutions in 35 countries. These comprise all EU Member States and Iceland, Norway, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, and Türkiye.

The students of these institutions can benefit from a unique transnational and innovative educational offer, allowing them to acquire essential skills and competences for the future. Furthermore, by partnering with almost 1 700 associated partners among NGO's, enterprises, local and regional authorities, the 50 European Universities alliances bring broad-scale innovation to Europe's regions.

With a record overall budget of €402.2 million from the Erasmus+ programme[1] for this call, each alliance receives a budget of up to €14.4 million for four years.

The 2023 call opened the possibility to higher education institutions from Western Balkans countries, not associated to the Erasmus+ programme to participate as full partners in the call. As a result, higher education institutions from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro have joined the initiative, on top of those from North Macedonia and Serbia.

As last year, the alliances can involve higher education institutions from Bologna Process countries as associated partners. Under the 2023 call, close to 30 higher education institutions from Ukraine have also joined the alliances.

Next Steps

In the fall of 2023, the Commission will launch the next Erasmus+ call for proposals, with the aim of reaching the goal of the European strategy for universities to expand to 60 European Universities alliances with more than 500 universities by mid-2024.


The European Universities initiative supports transnational alliances of on average nine higher education institutions that can include different types of establishments (such as comprehensive and research universities, universities of applied sciences, institutes of technology, schools of arts and higher vocational education and training institutions). These institutions develop a long-term structural, sustainable and systemic cooperation on education, research and innovation across borders. They offer student-centred curricula jointly delivered across inter-university campuses, on which students, staff and researchers from all parts of Europe can enjoy seamless mobility.

The Commission proposed the European Universities initiative to European Union leaders ahead of the Gothenburg Social Summit in November 2017, as part of an overall vision for the creation of a European Education Area by 2025. Presented in 2022, the European strategy for universities sets the ambition to support 60 European Universities involving more than 500 higher education institutions by mid-2024. For this, a record EUR 1.1 billion under Erasmus+ is foreseen under the current programming period 2021-2027. Support for the research dimension of European Universities can be sought under the European Excellence initiative under Horizon Europe.

The 2023 Erasmus+ European Universities call was structured around two strands. It offered to provide sustainable funding for already existing successful alliances of higher education institutions to pursue their long-term vision; the successful existing alliances have expanded with more than 50 new higher education institutions. And the call also supported the creation of new European Universities across Europe, gathering diverse higher education institutions around common strategic visions.

For More Information

European Universities Erasmus+ call 2023: results

European Universities Initiative



[1] Including EUR 3.2 million from the Instrument for Pre-Accession (IPA III) to further support the participation as full partners of higher education institutions from the Western Balkans countries not associated to the Erasmus+ programme


Imagine studying on the transnational campus of a European University, where the students can choose what, where and when to study in any partner university of the alliance. Learners and educators naturally acquire a whole new set of competencies, as they benefit from innovative and challenge-based pedagogy and from embedded mobility. European Universities fundamentally revolutionise higher education and promote European values and identity. They can help us pave the way towards a joint European degree, reinforcing a strong sense of European belonging among graduates. I warmly congratulate all successful higher education institutions.

Margaritis Schinas, Vice-President for Promoting our European Way of Life - 03/07/2023


Publication date
3 July 2023 (Last updated on: 3 July 2023)
Representation in Cyprus