On 27 April, the European Parliament gave its final approval to Horizon Europe, establishing the framework programme as EU’s main research and innovation funding programme. The vote comes after EU research ministers adopted the programme January 1st this year, when they agreed to dedicate 35% of the total budget to research and innovation on EU’s climate change objectives.
The vote came after nearly three year of negotiations on the content and budget of the €95.5 billion research and innovation programme. By comparison with the previous programme, Horizon 2020 that had a budget of €76.26 billion in 2018, the net allocation for the new research and innovation programme over seven years has increased by 30%.
Mariya Gabriel, the EU commissioner for research and innovation thanked MEPs and the research community for their efforts in securing funding for Horizon Europe and admitted the necessity for more work for member states to “obtain the most possible in these extremely difficult circumstances”. Gabriel is also attempting to revive plans to establish a single market for research in the EU and help all member states commit to the common investment target of 3% of their GDP.
The Goals for Horizon Europe
Horizon Europe will address societal challenges through six different funding clusters; spacing from health to democracy and the new regulation also affecting the European public private R&D partnerships, introducing the research missions, which are intended to advance breakthrough discoveries and innovations in strategic sectors. Among its goals, the programme will assist the EU’s health systems in preparing for possible pandemics, as well as the Union’s industry to decarbonise, digitalise and innovate. Moreover, Horizon Europe will provide for both short- and long-term funding for projects related to the climate change, digitalisation, and the COVID-19 pandemic.