Justice Programme

General information

Previous name: Justice Programme



Space strategy for Europe, focus on four strategic goals

  • Maximising the benefits of space for society and the EU economy;
  • Fostering a competitive and innovative European space sector;
  • Reinforcing Europe’s strategic autonomy in accessing and using space in a secure and safe environment;
  • Strengthening Europe’s role as a global actor and promoting international cooperation.


The different strands for EU Space programme are:

  • Satellite navigation systems, with a budget of €9 billion:


        Galileo, Europe’s own global satellite navigation system, provides accurate and reliable positioning and timing information for autonomous and connected cars, railways, aviation and other sectors. The Galileo Services will gradually improve as more satellites are deployed and other services (e.g high accuracy service) will be made available.

        The European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS) provides “safety of life” navigation services to aviation, maritime and land-based users over most of Europe. Safety of life means that the positioning information is so precise that, for example, an aircraft can safely land using it. All services provided by EGNOS are already fully operational and the number of users is growing (already 350 airports using it). The system needs constant maintenance and will also be improved to provide better quality services.

  • Earth observation, with a budget of €5.4 billion:


        Copernicus, a leading provider of Earth observation data across the globe, already helps save lives at sea, improves our response to natural disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes, forest fires or floods, and allows farmers to better manage their crops. Copernicus covers six thematic areas: land monitoring, marine monitoring, atmosphere monitoring, climate change, emergency management response and security. Over 2021-2027 Copernicus will expand these existing services to meet emerging needs, adding new observation capacities for CO2, and other greenhouse gas emissions monitoring, land use monitoring in support of agriculture, observations of the Polar regions, as well as security needs to improve detection of small vessels in support of border and maritime surveillance, the fight against illegal trafficking or the needs for EU external actions.

  • New security components, with a budget of €442 million:


        The new Governmental Satellite Communication (GOVSATCOM) initiative will provide Member States and EU security actors with guaranteed access to secure satellite communications.

        The Space Situational Awareness (SSA) initiative will support the long-term sustainability and security of space activities by ensuring protection against space hazards. The pilot project on surveillance of space and tracking of objects will be further developed to increase its performance and autonomy when it comes to preventing collisions in space and un-controlled re-entry of objects to earth. Complementary activities will address other space hazards threatening critical infrastructures (space weather, comets, and asteroids).

Focus of funding for 2021-2027

Eligible actions should contribute to Programme’s specific objectives:


  1. To provide of state-of-the-art and, where appropriate, secure positioning, navigation and timing services;
  • Indicator 1: Accuracy of the signal (GNSS),


  1. To deliver accurate and reliable Earth Observation data and information to support the implementation and monitoring of policies of the Union and its Member States in the fields of the environment, climate change, agriculture and rural development, civil protection, safety and security, as well as the digital economy;
  • Indicator 1: Number of users of Copernicus
  • Indicator 2: Addition of new services of Copernicus


  1. To enhance Space Surveillance Telescope (SST) capabilities to monitor, track and identify space objects, to monitor space weather and to map and network Union Near Earth Objects (NEO) capacities
  • Indicator 1: Number of users of SSA components
  • Indicator 2: Availability of Services


  1. To ensure the long-term availability of reliable, secure and cost-effective satellite communications services with an appropriate guarantee of access and robustness to withstand ill-intentioned acts
  • Indicator 1: Number of users of GOVSATCOM
  • Indicator 2: Availability of Services


  1. To contribute to an autonomous, secure and cost-efficient capability to access space
  • Indicator 1: Number of launches for EU Space actions


  1. For the actions in support of the space sector: support and reinforce the competitiveness, entrepreneurship, skills and capacity to innovate of legal and natural persons from the Union active or wishing to become active in that sector, with particular regard to the position and needs of small and medium-sized enterprises and start-ups.
  • Indicator 1: Growth in the downstream sector related to the Space actions

Thematic Priorities

Participating countries

Possible applicants

Target group / Final beneficiaries


Total Budget for 2014-2020

EUR 12,6 billion

Total Budget for 2021-2027

EUR 14,8 billion (Current prices)

Increase / Decrease in %

Increased by 17 %

Budget per project





(depending on the call)



(depending on the call)

Complexity of budget from 1 (easy) to 5 (difficult): /

Criteria for the complexity of budget (How detailed is the budget, how complex is the documentation, availibility of documentation, etc.)


Tips for applicants on budgeting

  • Check thoroughly the space programme of the Union and the European Union Agency for the Space Programme (available online);
  • For contracts above €10 million, the contracting authority shall ensure that at least 30 % of the value of the contract is subcontracted to companies outside the group of the prime contractor, in order to enable the cross-border participation of SMEs.

Programme-Specific Tips for Applicants

2-3 lessons learnt in 2014-2020

  • Copernicus is reaching user constituencies from the traditional space area but so far did not sufficiently manage to reach other potential users outside space;
  • Due to the very high number of user registrations, the communication aspects, the data distribution and access, and data download need to be improved. There is a need to effectively make available and allow for combination with other data of massive volumes of satellite data and information.
  • Regarding GNSS, the governance set-up has revealed some inefficiency in terms of low reactivity of the decision-making process due to the number of actors involved but also due to a different governance set-up between deployment;
  • The launch of initial services and the transition from the deployment to the exploitation phase have raised challenges that need to be properly addressed in order to maintain and improve the appropriate level of security for the operation of the EGNSS systems.

Programme Specific Practical Information

  • Define an effective governance structure, align scope for better coordination between the various actors and potential for further synergies;
  • Check the specific Regulation (EU) No 1285/2013 European satellite navigation systems, Galileo and EGNOS; Regulation (EU) No 377/2014 establishing the Copernicus Programme; Decision No 541/2014/EU (SST); Regulation (EU) No 912/2010  European GNSS Agency – renamed the ‘EU Agency for the Space Programme’

Positive aspects

Negative Aspects

Related Links

DOs and DON'Ts



Develop an evaluation framework with a set of indicators intended to measure the extent to which the specific objectives of the Programme have been achieved and with a view to minimising administrative burdens and costs;


  • Indicators should be linked to the specific objectives but without repeating them to avoid incoherence.