Have you ever wondered how the roadmaps and research agendas for the European projects are prepared? Who decides which calls are opened? Who writes the call texts? Can you be involved?

At least I was wondering this before. And wanted to be involved.

I give you here a short overview of the process, based on the things I have learned during the past years, and especially after being elected as the Research Chair of the BEPA & Batteries Europe Working Group of Raw Materials and Recycling.

Which EU level activities there are?

Let’s start first with a short introduction to some of the European level networks in the battery field. You can find a nice summary from this Batteries Europe website, describing the EU Battery Ecosystem.

I selected a few networks from this ecosystem, which I introduce here to you. And the selection is based only on the fact that these are the networks where I am involved myself, and from which I know the most. Others are not in any sense less important!

Battery 2030+

The Battery 2030+ initiative is targeting to invent sustainable batteries of the future. As the name suggests, the focus is on the future, beyond year 2030. The main document, which you can read to get to know the initiative better, is the Battery 2030+ roadmap. It has been divided into a few main topics, including accelerated discovery of battery interfaces and materials, integration of smart functionalities (sensing and self-healing) and cross-cutting areas of manufacturability and recyclability.

Some of the EU calls are dedicated to the Battery 2030+ topics. The HIDDEN project, which I’m coordinating, is one of the projects, which belongs under this great initiative. Several new Battery 2030+ projects are also just about to start, and there will be still more Battery 2030+ calls opening soon.

Batteries Europe

Batteries Europe is divided into six Working Groups of 1) New and emerging battery technologies, 2) Raw materials and recycling, 3) Advanced materials, 4) Cell design and manufacturing, 5) Mobile application and integration, and 6) Stationary application and integration.

These Working Groups, together with the Batteries Europe steering board and secretariat, are responsible e.g., in preparing roadmaps for Europe, and writing the strategic research and innovation agenda (SRIA) for the European battery value chain. The SRIA will be the basis for drafting the new Horizon Europe call texts.


BEPA, which is an abbreviation from “Batteries European Partnership Association”, has joint Working Groups with Batteries Europe. The roles are otherwise the same, but BEPA is also responsible in writing the Horizon Europe call texts. There is an annual fee to be a member in BEPA.

All these Working Groups have an Industry chair, Research chair and a Technical advisor. These people were elected by the BEPA and Batteries Europe members. In addition, all Working Groups have a Secretariat technical support and a contact person.

The largest group of people in these Working Groups consists of experts who are working with these topics, both from industry and academia. All experts can participate in the planning and writing of the roadmaps, SRIA, and if their organizations are members in BEPA, also the call texts.

Speaking the same language

The joint Working Groups started their work in summer 2022 (before that, there were separate groups both for Batteries Europe and BEPA). The first task was to prepare a glossary, which contains definitions for key performance indicators (KPIs) throughout the battery value chain. This ensures that everyone knows what it means in practise if a call text requires e.g., reduction of the environmental impact of batteries.

This glossary was just published and you can find it from the Batteries Europe website from the report KPIs Benchmarking & Target KPIs.

Status of today and targets for future

The starting point to create a roadmap is of course clarifying the status of today. This requires some work, and it is important to have measurable values to follow the progress in future.

Then, the next step is to create targets for future. It is good to have ambitious but anyway realistic targets. This is where the input by all experts in the Working Groups is very valuable. The academic partners may have ideas where we could go, and industry members can give feedback about restrictions and possibilities when the ideas are scaled-up into industrial scale. Or sometimes the other way around 😊

The target is to find a balance that takes both approaches into account. It is important to have calls that allow early-stage development and risky ideas, but also calls that focus on up-scaling and bridging the gap between research and commercialization.

Some targets are mandatory and come from the new battery regulation. For example, some of the material recovery targets from recycling processes are defined in the regulation. However, the roadmap and SRIA scope will be wider than the regulation and partly more ambitious.

Writing the call texts

Currently, we are updating the battery roadmaps for future. And after that it is time to write the SRIA. Finally, after the SRIA is ready, it is possible to start drafting the call texts for the coming years. There again, all members can propose ideas for important topics that would need funding, and which are building on the targets mentioned in the SRIA. The selection of the most important call text ideas will be made jointly within the Working Groups and European Commission. It also must fit into the budget frame that is available for the battery calls.

I was already involved in the writing process during the previous round of SRIA, as an expert in some of the Working Groups. The process was such that one or two people were selected to write the first draft for each call text and then they were modified and finalized together with the whole Working Group. Again, feedback from the European Commission was taken into account as well. I believe a similar process will be used for the coming call texts as well.

How to be involved?

Indeed, it is possible to be involved in this process. You can join a Working Group of Batteries Europe, free of charge, by submitting your application here. If you want to be a member in BEPA as well, then your organization should pay the annual fee, which depends on the size and nature of your organization.

I highly recommend participating in these activities! It is the best place to both learn and give your input to the battery research directions in Europe.