EU and Argentina celebrate their cooperation in science and technology
Buenos Aires, 13 March 2015
Today, the Minister for Science, Technology and Productive Innovation (MINCYT) of the Republic of Argentina, Lino Barañao, and the Director for International Cooperation of the European Commission's Research and Innovation Directorate-General, Maria Cristina Russo, honour of the 10th anniversary of the Argentinean-European Union Liaison Office for Science, Technology and Innovation.
They are keynote speakers at the conference Argentina- European Union: 10 years of cooperation in science, technology and innovation, which gathers together Ambassadors of EU Member States in Buenos Aires. They are also signing an Implementing Arrangement launching a new initiative to encourage top Argentine scientists to come to Europe as members of research teams lead by European Research Council (ERC) grant holders.
Ms Russo also co-chairs the 8th Steering Committee of the Agreement on Cooperation in Science, Technology and Innovation, together with Ms Agueda Menvielle, National Director of International Relations at MINCYT.
These events are part of a series of events bringing together Argentine and European policy makers, researchers and administrators to take stock of on-going cooperation and reflect on opportunities for future activities. Other events include a seminar on Nanotoxicology and Nanoregulation as well as workshops on New Opportunities for Business Cooperation with Europe; Research Infrastructures – e-infrastructures; Marine Research and Structural Biology.
Under the umbrella of the Agreement on Cooperation in Science, Technology and Innovation, the EU enjoys very good bilateral relations with Argentina, whose researchers are eligible for funding from the EU's research and innovation framework programme Horizon 2020. In addition, they work closely together through the regional cooperation stimulated by the EU-CELAC Joint Initiative on Research and Innovation.
Argentine researchers have been active and successful in the past framework programmes. In the seventh framework programme (the predecessor of Horizon 2020) one hundred and nineteen participants from Argentina were active in one hundred funded collaborative projects. The EU contribution to the Argentine participants in those 100 projects amounts to over €14 million. In addition 289 Marie Curie fellowships and eight of the prestigious ERC grants were awarded to Argentines in the course of FP7.
In the press
Argentina signed an Agreement on scientific and technological cooperation with the European Community in September 1999. Both sides ratified it in the following year. The agreement has a validity of five years and is renewed tacitly for the following five years unless a change is suggested. The agreement was renewed for another five years in 2011.
The agreement creates an institutional foundation for a wide variety of knowledge centred cooperation. The Agreement entails regular meetings of the Steering Committee, which offer opportunities for developing bilateral policy dialogues and promote, monitor and steer cooperation. The European Framework Programmes are a major instrument for implementation on the European side and Argentina's national mechanisms and research support schemes are also being used in pursuit of the objectives of scientific and technological cooperation. Many EU Member States are also actively engaged with Argentina in S&T cooperation.
The main areas of cooperation under the Agreement have been in the thematic areas of Health; Food, Agriculture, Fisheries and Biotechnology; Environment; Nanotechnology; ICT and Energy.
During the first six years of the 7th Framework Programme, up to 2012, over one hundred Argentine institutional partners have been supported in some 86 different projects, mainly in the areas of Food, Agriculture and Biotechnology; Health; Environment; and ICT. More than 80 Argentine researchers have come to Europe with Marie Curie Fellowships. More than €13 million has been committed to the Argentine participants for all these different activities. In addition, there are 7 Argentinian European Research Council grantees.
Argentina is also very active within the context of regional cooperation between the EU and Latin America, notably in the EU-CELAC Joint Initiative for Research and Innovation. Argentina co-chairs, together with France, the Working Group dealing with Bioeconomy including Food Security.
The EU's Joint Research Centre has a very diverse field of activities with Argentina. The cooperation encompasses activities in particular in nuclear energy, agriculture, water, climate, ICT / Future Internet. The nuclear energy field is the one where the JRC has the most advanced cooperation.
Argentina coordinates the INCO-Net project ALCUE-Net 'Latin America, Caribbean and European Union Network on Research and Innovation' (2012-2017). The coordinator is the Argentine Ministry of Science, Technology and Productive Innovation. The project was initiated on the 1st of December 2012, with a kick-off meeting in Brussels on 18 April 2013. It runs for four and a half years. It has 19 partners from 16 countries. The European countries involved are: Austria, Spain, Finland, France, Portugal and Norway. The CELAC partners are from Chile, Argentina, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Uruguay, Panama, Barbados, Brazil, Mexico and Colombia. The objectives of the project are however not only linked to the partner countries involved, but also to the bi-regional cooperation between the whole of the EU and the Latin-American and Caribbean regions.
The project "Argentinean Bureau for Enhancing Cooperation with the European Union in the Science, Technology and Innovation Area; Phase III" is a continuation of two previous bilateral projects. The project aims at setting up a sustainable, knowledge-based, bilateral dialogue platform between S&T key players as well as stakeholders from the European Union Member States and Associated Countries and from Argentina. ABEST III will focus on contributing to the implementation of the Framework Programmes' objectives by increasing participation of Argentinian actors in science, technology and innovation in the Framework Programmes through a comprehensive and reciprocal approach in awareness raising, good practice sharing and effective dissemination activities. It will also establish synergies with other on-going projects and initiatives, in particular those addressing the regional aspects of EU-CELAC cooperation.
DG Research and Innovation
Luis Samaniego MOFFRE
Senior Policy Officer
Unit RTD C2 – North America, Latin America and the Caribbean
Telephone: (+32) 229 52611
Luis Samaniego Moffre