Horizon Europe – a bumpy ride ahead?
As the final results came in, political commentators, journalists, lobbyists and scientists were left scratching their heads. What did the European Parliament elections really mean and what sort of legislation and policymaking would we see in the next few years? The elections did not see the surge in far-right and populist parties that was expected, but it also saw for the first time the loss of the majority coalition of the centre-right and centre-left groups. Commentators have so far labelled the resulting Parliament fragmented, with groups such as the Greens and Renew Europe (liberal centrist parties) being needed to form pro-EU coalitions. Ultimately, pro-EU parties came ahead but resting on our laurels would be unwise.
For EU science, the results are hard to judge, although the parties with the most MEPs tend to believe in the strength and potential of Europe’s scientific base and tend to support greater spending for research and innovation. In July 2019, the European Parliament’s Committees were formed. The ITRE Committee – short for the Industry, Research and Energy Committee – has at closer inspection retained many of the same leading figures from the previous Parliament.
In this context, EuChemS warmly welcomes the first ever female President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen.
Science Communication and Policy Officer