NEST — what's next?
The NEST (New and Emerging Science and Technology) initiative was a pilot activity in the Sixth Framework Programme FP6. It was specifically designed to support unconventional and visionary research with the potential to open new fields for European science and technology, as well as research on potential problems uncovered by science. NEST was designed to be flexible and interdisciplinary research was encouraged. There were no restrictions on the scientific fields to be addressed except that the research carried out under NEST should cut across or lie outside the thematic priority areas.
It gives me great pleasure to present this overview of one the most forward-looking and successful initiatives of the 6th Framework Programme. Between 2000 and 2006 a total of 164 projects were funded under the New and Emerging Science and Technology (NEST) initiative. We can now take stock of their achievements and assess the relevance of the NEST approach for the future.
In many ways NEST was an initiative ahead of its time, focussed on developing the radically new ideas which will feed economic and sustainable growth, jobs and social progress in the long term – the very same issues that are now at the heart of the Innovation Union Initiative! The excellence of the work supported is beyond doubt. The 2010 Nobel Prize in Physics can be directly linked to the frontier research carried out under the SIBMAR NEST project. And 28 patents have arisen so far from NEST projects, demonstrating that much of the excellent research is also leading to innovative commercial applications.
A key feature of NEST was the non-prescriptive bottom-up approach, designed to unleash the creativity of researchers. The recent interim evaluation of the 7th Framework programme reaffirms the importance of this way of funding research. A recent stakeholder consultation shows that researchers would like to see this and many of the features of NEST adopted in the next phase of support for research, under the recently announced Horizon 2020 programme.
Horizon 2020 will bring all existing programmes for research and innovation together within a single framework. This new programme, which will come online in 2014, will support the whole chain from basic research through to innovative products and services that will stimulate growth and job creation in Europe. And, last but not least, single set of rules will make it far easier for those making groundbreaking research discoveries to take them forward to the market place.
Horizon 2020 includes a coherent set of actions dedicated to supporting the EU's science base, including European Research Council, with a reinforced budget, and a newlydesigned Future and Emerging Technologies activity that covers the entire spectrum of research in a manner very much like NEST.
NEST might have finished but its spirit lives on!
Download the Foreword 700 KB
Experiences of 27 projects, which participated in a survey
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... download the experiences document 381 KB
ANCIENTCHARM 235 KB
Analysis by neutron resonant capture imaging and other emerging neutron techniques: new cultural heritage and archaeological research methods
ARES 212 KB
Assembling reconfigurable endoluminal surgical system
BRAINTUNING 244 KB
Tuning the brain for music
CASPIC 283 KB
Cellulose architecture systems biology for plant innovation creation
CHLaSC 245 KB
Characterizing human language by structural complexity
CONTROL CANCER 182 KB
Developing a virtual and molecular control board for diverting cancer stem cell to non-malignance
CULTAPTATION 209 KB
Dynamics and adaptation in human cumulative culture
DYNAMO 281 KB
Design and functionality of non-linear electrochemical nanoscale devices
EC-Moan 230 KB
Scalable modelling and analysis techniques to study emergent cell behaviour. Understanding the E.coli stress response
EMBRYOMICS 176 KB
Embryomics: reconstructing in space and time the cell lineage tree
EMERGENCE 244 KB
A foundation for Synthetic Biology in Europe
GABA 154 KB
Global approach to brain activity: from cognition to disease
GEBACO 256 KB
Toward the genetic basis of cooperation
IDEA 309 KB
Imaging device for electrophysiological activity monitoring of neuronal cell cultures
MANMADE 145 KB
Diagnosis vulnerability, emergent phenomena and volatility in man-made networks
MINET 349 KB
Measuring the impossible network
MONAT 275 KB
Measurement of naturalness
NESTCOM 204 KB
What it means to communicate
NEURO 259 KB
Towards the neuronal machine
PARTICLE RISK 292 KB
Risk assessment for particle exposure
PECU 208 KB
Photon emission in crystalline undulators
SIBMAR 334 KB
Obtaining atomically resolved structural information on individual bio molecules using electron holography
SOMAPS 211 KB
Multilevel systems analysis and modelling of somatosensory, memory and affective maps of body and objects in multidimensional subjective space
SpiDME 262 KB
Spintronic devices for molecular electronics
SYNBIOSAFE 248 KB
Safety and ethical aspects of synthetic biology
SYNTEX 231 KB
Measuring the feelings and expectations associated with texture
Thales Was Right 300 KB
Transients in the Hellenic and Antilles, locii of earthquakes of European subductions: water, activity, structure and seismic risk illuminated by geophysical high-technology