As part of our mission in bringing chemistry closer to the heart of policymaking in Europe, we have updated our position on what we want out of the next research framework programme, Horizon Europe, which will follow the current Horizon 2020. Through a simple info-sheet, we have laid out the areas where we believe greater funding will have an immense impact, and where proposals have been deemed insufficient or misdirected.
The budget proposed by the Commission, although an increase from the current research framework programme, will be insufficient if Europe is to be successful in dealing with the many challenges we are facing and will continue to face over the coming years. And whilst we welcome the European Parliament’s call for a €120 billion budget, this is still lacking ambition. We have therefore called, much like the majority of scientific and academic organisations across Europe, for a budget of €160 billion.
The budget proposal for the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, which have proven particularly successful over the last years, is poor. We have therefore also called for a stronger and more ambitious budget – as unfortunately a huge number of excellent proposals are rejected due to lack of funds.
There has moreover been a worrying lack of clarity surrounding the role third countries will have in the programme. But science knows no borders, and we have therefore called for third countries to be able to fully participate. Whether this is the UK, Balkan countries, Switzerland, Norway, Turkey or beyond, we need to work together to ensure Europe remains a champion of research and innovation.
Finally, we have also stressed the absolute necessity of mechanisms that support projects through all TRLs – from basic research right up to commercialisation. To this day, too many wonderful ideas and projects are killed off before they can succeed, and the ‘valley of death’ of innovation continues to hamper the quality and capacity of European innovation.
We will soon release our detailed Position Paper with comments and amendments on the proposals made by the European Commission and the European Parliament Rapporteurs. You can in the meantime take a look at our info-sheet here!