The European Social Fund is one of the EU's Structural Funds, which were set up to support EU social policies. It finances the work of the Member States aimed at the development of human resources and the combating of unemployment. Funding is mainly allocated to vocational training, scholarships, apprenticeships, vocational consultancy and mediation, analyses of, and research into, the employment market, and so forth. The funds available to the Lubuskie Voivodeship between 2007 and 2013, within the framework of the Human Capital Operational Programme, amount to EUR 178.80 million.
The priorities and activities of the ESF are the support and promotion of enterprise and self-employment. Support for the management and workers of enterprises is envisaged in the form of assistance in the development of the Regional Innovation Strategy, as well as in knowledge transfer within the framework of collaboration between the employees of enterprises and research and development units in sectors of strategic significance for the region.