ESF EU logo_interview at city hall

European Social Fund

The European Social Fund (ESF) forms part of the European Structural and Investment Funds for 2014-20 and aims to improve employment opportunities across the EU, raise living standards and assist people to get better skills and job prospects.

London’s 2014-2020 ESF Programme will focus on improving employment opportunities, promoting social inclusion and investing in skills by providing the help people need to fulfil their potential. 

The GLA has a dual role in the delivery of European Social Fund programmes in London, acting both as the Intermediate Body (the European Programmes Management Unit) and as a commissioner of delivery (the GLA as a Co-Financing Organisation).

The GLA as a Co-Financing Organisation

The GLA was granted CFO status in March 2016, and took on responsibility for the ESF programmes that had previously been delivered by London Development Agency (LDA), as well as developing and managing a suite of Youth themed projects during the 2007-2013 ESF delivery period.

For the 2014/20 ESF delivery period the GLA has developed a suite of ESF eligible projects and programmes that align with GLA Statutory responsibilities and Mayoral Priorities. The projects will be commissioned and managed by the GLA's Delivery Unit who sits within the GLA Regeneration Team.

You can find out more information on the GLA CFO programme page.

European Programmes Management Unit as an Intermediate Body

The European Programmes Management Unit (EPMU) at the GLA is responsible for managing the London ESF Programme as an Intermediate Body. The day-to-day responsibilities of EPMU include developing calls for funding, performance monitoring and management, carrying out pre and post-expenditure checks on projects and reclaiming ESF funds where necessary.

For the 2014-2020 programming period, the ESF programme is delivered across England’s 39 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) areas. Each of which provides advice to the Managing Authority (the GLA Intermediate Body in London), on the needs and opportunities in an area and on the strategic fit of applications for funding.

Further information on the development of the ESF 2014-20 Programme and planned provision can be found on the LEP website.

Find out more about the European Programmes Management Unit.