The 6th EU Research Framework Programme was the EU's main instrument for research funding in Europe and ran between 2002 and 2006.

The was intended to help create a a "European Research Area" (ERA), an internal market for science and technology, which would fosters scientific excellence, competitiveness and innovation through the promotion of better co-operation and co-ordination between relevant actors at all levels. Its objectives were:

  • Concentrating European efforts on fewer priorities - in particular on areas where co-operation at European level presents clear added value
  • Moving towards progressive integration of activities of all relevant participants working at different levels
  • Promoting research activities designed to have a lasting, "structuring" impact
  • Supporting activities that will strengthen Europe's general scientific and technological basis
  • Using the scientific potential of candidate countries to prepare and assist their accession to the EU for the benefit of European science at large.

Further information on FP6 can be found at: https://ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/MEMO_02_152