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BEST 2.0 Small Grants

European Commission

Grant amount: Up to €100,000

Anticipated deadline: The deadline for this grant has passed

Applicant type: Government Entity Nonprofit For-Profit Business

Funding uses: Education / Outreach, Applied Project / Program

Location of project: French Southern Territories; Anguilla; Aruba; Bermuda; Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Expand all

Location of residency: French Southern Territories; Anguilla; Aruba; Bermuda; Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Expand all


NOTE: At the current time no further calls are foreseen under the BEST 2.0 Programme

The BEST 2.0 Programme is a funding facility, supported by the European Commission (DG DEVCO) as part of the EU Biodiversity for Life (B4Life) flagship. It aims to promote the conservation of biodiversity and sustainable use of ecosystem services, including ecosystem-based approaches to climate change adaptation and mitigation, as a basis for sustainable development in Europe's Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs).

The OCTs are found in five regions around the world:

  • Caribbean
  • Indian Ocean
  • Pacific
  • Polar and Sub-Polar
  • South Atlantic


The overall objective of BEST 2.0 is to promote the conservation of biodiversity and sustainable use of ecosystem services, including ecosystem-based approaches to climate change adaptation and mitigation, as a basis for sustainable development in OCTs.

The specific objective is to enable, empower and strengthen local authorities and civil society organisations which are committed to local development, biodiversity conservation and sustainable use of ecosystem services in OCTs.

BEST 2.0 is designed to provide substantive and effective support for actions at the local, as well the regional level; regional cooperation being key in the regions where the OCTs are located. BEST 2.0 will as well catalyse the efforts and will constitute a key contribution to the achievement of the global objectives and goals in terms of biodiversity, sustainable development and climate change.

Financial Allocation

The overall indicative amount made available for this 2017 call for Small Grant proposals is one million two hundred and eighty thousand euros (EUR 1 280 000). Indicative financial sub-envelopes for the two groups of regions are shown below; however, the final decision regarding the selection of projects to be funded will be taken on the sole basis of the quality of the proposals received, and not on the foreseen subenvelopes. As such the final allocation of funds may differ from the indicative distribution below.

  • Caribbean and Pacific regions: 61.3% (of the overall indicative amount)
  • Indian Ocean, Polar/Sub-polar and South Atlantic regions: 38.7% (of the overall indicative amount)

BEST 2.0 Small Grants fall into two categories:

  • Swift Small Grants ≤ € 50 000
  • Small Grants > € 50 000 and ≤ € 100 000

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Lead applicant: 
    • Applicants must be legal entities (e.g. a registered/incorporated company or organisation).
    • In order to be eligible for a grant, the lead applicant must be:
      • A public or private body, actor or institution.
      • Registered/incorporated in one of the EU Overseas Country and Territories (OCTs)
        • Special conditions apply for grants targeting uninhabited territories, see here.
      • Directly responsible for the preparation and implementation of the grant project.
      • Have a bank account in the name of the organisation;
    • BEST 2.0 small grants aim principally to support and ease access to appropriate resources for local actors that are based in the EU OCTs and involved in the conservation of biodiversity, sustainable use of ecosystem services, including ecosystem-based approaches to climate change adaptation and mitigation, as a basis for sustainable development in OCTs.
      • As such the target beneficiaries for small grants are primarily:
        • local non-governmental organisations (NGOs)
        • local civil society organisations (CSOs)
        • local community-based organisations (CBOs)
        • local non-profit organisations
        • local for-profit and socio-professional organisations that meet the criteria of a microenterprise as defined in EC recommendation here.
        • local sub-governmental bodies i.e. municipalities, cities of a territory, communal services
      • Government-owned enterprises or institutions are eligible provided they can establish that:
        • The enterprise or institution has a legal personality independent of any government agency or actor.
        • The enterprise or institution has the authority to apply for and receive private funds.
        • The enterprise or institution may not assert a claim of sovereign immunity
  • Co-applicant(s)
    • Co-applicants participate in designing and implementing the action, and the costs they incurare eligible in the same way as those incurred by the lead applicant.
    • Co-applicants must satisfy the eligibility criteria as applicable to the lead applicant.
    • Co-applicants must sign the mandate included as Annex 1 to these guidelines.
  • Affiliated entities
    • The lead applicant and its co-applicant(s) may act with affiliated entity(ies).
    • Affiliated entity(ies) must satisfy the same eligibility criteria as the lead applicant and the co-applicant(s).
      • They must sign the affiliated entity mandate included as Annex 2 to these guidelines.
    • Costs incurred by affiliated entities to a beneficiary may be accepted as eligible costs provided they meet the criteria in section 2.1.5 of these guidelines.
    • Only the following entities may be considered as affiliated entities to the lead applicant and/or to co-applicant(s):
      • Only entities having a structural link with the applicants (i.e. the lead applicant or a coapplicant), in particular a legal or capital link.
    • This structural link encompasses mainly two notions:
      • Control, as defined in Directive 2013/34/EU on the annual financial statements, consolidated financial statements and related reports of certain types of undertakings.
        • Entities affiliated to applicant may hence be:
          • Entities directly or indirectly controlled by an applicant (daughter companies or first-tier subsidiaries). They may also be entities controlled by an entity controlled by an applicant (granddaughter companies or second-tier subsidiaries) and the same applies to further tiers of control;
          • Entities directly or indirectly controlling the applicant (parent companies). Likewise, they may be entities controlling an entity controlling the applicant;
          • Entities under the same direct or indirect control as the applicant (sister companies).
      • Membership, i.e. the applicant is legally defined as a e.g. network, federation, association in which the proposed affiliated entities also participate or the applicant participates in the same entity (e.g. network, federation, association) as the proposed affiliated entities.
    • See full details here.
  • Actions:
    • Actions must relate to the conservation and/or sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services including ecosystem-based climate change adaptation or mitigation in the European OCTs.
    • Location:  Actions must take place in one or more of the Overseas Countries and Territories in the following regions:
      • Caribbean
      • Indian Ocean
      • Pacific
      • Polar/Sub-polar
      • South Atlantic
    • Types of action:
      • To be eligible for funding:
        • the project activities must be located in one or more of the OCTs and contribute to the BEST 2.0 objectives.
        • the proposed activities must comply with the BEST 2.0 and IUCN environmental and social safeguard aspects (see Annex 3).
      • BEST 2.0 projects must contribute to tangible impacts in terms of the conservation, sustainable development and/or sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services, including ecosystem-based approaches to climate change adaptation or mitigation. 
      • Proposals that include research activities must include tangible follow-up actions using the research, the results of which are delivered within the timeframe of the project, i.e. proposal of a practical management plan or new policy, or new protected area design, new natural resources management  plan, in vivo pilot site activities implementing the results of the research with new management or conservation actions.
  • Costs: See eligible cost details here.


  • Lead applicant:
    • Individuals are not eligible to receive a grant from BEST 2.0.
    • Applications submitted by a body acting as an intermediary for a third party are not eligible.
    • Grants cannot be paid into an account in the name of an individual.
  • Affiliated Entities
    • The following are not considered as affiliated entities to an applicant:
      • Entities that have entered into a (procurement) contract or subcontract with an applicant, act as concessionaires or delegates for public services for an applicant,
      • Entities that receive financial support from an applicant,
      • Entities that cooperate on a regular basis with an applicant on the basis of a memorandum of understanding or share some assets,
      • Entities that have signed a consortium agreement under the grant contract (unless this consortium agreement leads to the creation of a "sole applicant" as described above). 
  • Actions:
    • Fundamental research projects will not be funded.
    • The following types of action are ineligible:
      • The purchase of land, involuntary resettlement of people, or activities that negatively affect physical cultural resources, including those important to local communities
      • Activities adversely affecting individuals and local communities or where these communities have not provided their broad support to the project activities
      • The removal or altering of any physical cultural property (includes sites having archaeological, paleontological, historical, religious, or unique natural values)
      • Activities that duplicate work previously funded by BEST