Climate changes, energy security, population ageing and other contemporary world challenges necessitate an international cooperation in order to take advantage of the resources and to coordinate all the countries’ investments for a long-lasting development. In this context, the European Commission launched the Framework Programme, which is the principal instrument of the European Union, used for research funding. The international scientific and technological cooperation has always been part of the European Union research policy, from the moment when the first Framework Programme was launched in 1983. An open access approach to the international cooperation was implemented once the sixth Framework Programme was launched between 2002 and 2006. This approach has been consolidated, in accordance with the seventh Framework Programme (2007-2013), by new instruments designed in accordance with each specific programme (“Cooperation,””Capacities,” “People,” “Ideas”) in order to promote international cooperation. The purpose of this article is to provide an analysis of the application and of the access to these programmes.