HORIZON EUROPE: London and Brussels have a deal!
On 7 September, it has been published a joint statement in which the President of the European Commission Ursula Von Der Leyen stated: “The EU and UK are key strategic partners and allies, and today’s agreement proves that point. We will continue to be at the forefront of global science and research.”
According to the statement, the UK scientists will now be able to receive European Research Council grants and coordinate academic-industrial consortia in the Framework programme. It confirms that from UK will be able to fully participate from 1 January 2024 in the 2024 work programme till the end of Horizon Europe in 2027. This will reinforce the opportunity to be part of a worldwide network of researchers and innovators aimed at tackling global challenges in climate, energy, mobility, digital, industry and space, health, and more.
As stated by Mary Ryan, vice provost for research and enterprise at Imperial College London: “We had a few examples of where our researchers were not in consortia, that they probably would have been. But a lot of those collaborations are still happening, even if they’re outside of the funded consortium programme.” Although insisting they never stopped engaging with EU researchers – a home-grown guarantee scheme allowed British academic teams to join Horizon consortia with domestic money – UK universities admit their academics missed the boat on some big calls.
Now UK universities are scrambling to get back up to speed.
Moreover, the UK will join also the Copernicus Space Programme, which makes an essential contribution in reaching our European Green Deal and net-zero objectives. According to the UK’s announcement: “The UK’s association to Copernicus comes at a crucial moment, where the Copernicus space infrastructure and its information services will evolve further and their contribution to understanding and acting on environmental and climate change related challenges is more important than ever.”
In conclusion, this deal will allow EU and the UK to open a new chapter in their partnership, based on mutual trust and full cooperation, which will be key in the development of sustainable solutions for improving health and the environment around us.