LERU Secretary-General comments on relation of FP9 & UK
In an opinion piece published in Research LERU, Secretary-General Prof. Kurt Deketelaere sets out his views on the question "Is there a way to keep Britain in the next European Framework Programme for research?". Acoording to Mr. Deketelaere, the EU 27 may decide on 14 or 15 December, after 18 months of negotiations, that sufficient progress has been made and the parties can move on to the second phase of Brexit negotiations, focusing on the transition period of 2 years or more and the future relationship between the UK and the EU. For research, innovation and education, the start of this second phase would be absolutely necessary and crucial. Phase one had only limited relevance, concerning the continued participation of the UK in Horizon 2020 and Erasmus+ until the end of the present Multiannual Financial Framework, and citizens’ rights for UK researchers in continental Europe and vice versa.
The LERU Secretary-General states that in phase two, and especially for the future relations discussions, the UK will have to put its research position on the table. In its September 2017 Future Partnership paper, Collaboration on Science and Innovation, LERU had stated: “Given the UK’s unique relationship with European science and innovation, the UK would also like to explore forging a more ambitious and close partnership with the EU than any yet agreed between the EU and a non-EU country.” But this seems not be realistic, Deketelaere assumes.
A possible solution for this dilemma could be one recommended by Pascal Lamy’s High Level Group which states in its report that international cooperation be made “a trademark of EU research and innovation”. It suggests that the EU should “open up the R&I programme to association by the best and participation by all, based on reciprocal co-funding or access to co-funding in the partner country”.
Read the full article here