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10 June 2014

The 11th EU-China Joint Steering Committee on Science and Technology

On 12 June 2014 Director General for Research and Innovation Mr Robert-Jan Smits co-chaired with Chinese Vice-Minister for Science and Technology Mr Cao Jianlin the 11th EU-China Joint Steering Committee meeting on Science and Technology (JSCM). The meeting provided the occasion for a comprehensive policy dialogue covering the whole spectrum of science, technology and innovation cooperation between the EU and China

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08 June 2014

EU, Israel signs Horizon 2020 association agreement

Picture of handshake between Yaakov Perry and José Manuel Barroso

European Commission’s President José Manuel Barroso and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today witnessed the signature of Israel's association to Horizon 2020, the new EU research and innovation programme. Horizon 2020 offers a huge opportunity to enhance the traditionally active cooperation between Israeli and EU researchers and innovators. Under the terms of the agreement, Israel will have the same access to the programme as EU Member States and other Associated Countries. In return, it will contribute to the Horizon 2020 budget.

President Barroso said: "Israel is a strong player in research and innovation and for this reason an important partner for the EU to address societal challenges of common concern, such as ageing, food safety, environment protection or cleaner energy, and to strengthen the competitiveness of our industries. I am pleased that we are signing the agreement today since it reflects the mutual importance we attach to cooperation and partnership in research and innovation."

Israel has the highest proportion of researchers in the business sector in the world and one of the highest investments in civilian R&D – more than 4% of GDP. This makes it a strong partner for the EU and will bring added benefit to cooperation in Horizon 2020 given the programme’s stronger focus on innovation.

In addition to advancing science, technology and innovation cooperation between EU and Israeli researchers has enabled complex scientific cross-border challenges in all spheres of the economy and society to be addressed. Cooperation also provides an important mechanism to help reinforce mutual understanding, also with regional partners.

The agreement was signed by Head of the EU Delegation to Israel, Ambassador Lars Faaborg-Andersen, and Minister of Science, Technology and Space Yaakov Perry. The agreement, once ratified by Israel, will enable eligible Israeli researchers and innovators to take part actively from the start of the new programme in all activities with their EU and international partners.

For further information please contact Alexandra Meir, EU Delegation Tel Aviv

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04 June 2014

Turkey joins Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme

Turkey will get full access to the European Union's new seven-year research and innovation programme, Horizon 2020, under an agreement signed today in Istanbul. The agreement granting association status to research entities from Turkey was signed by European Commission Director-General for Research and Innovation, Robert-Jan Smits, and Ahmet Yücel, Acting Undersecretary of Turkey's Ministry for EU Affairs. Turkey is the third EU partner country to become associated to Horizon 2020.

European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science Máire Geoghegan-Quinn said: “Turkey is a much valued partner. Its dynamic business environment is a perfect test bed for the development of innovative products and services – making cooperation a win-win for researchers and enterprises on both sides. Horizon 2020 offers more funding for innovation and small companies than ever before so Turkey is in a good position to see its participation in the programme increasing."

The agreement, which will come into force following Turkish ratification, was signed in the presence of Turkish Minister for EU Affairs Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu and Minister for Science, Industry and Technology Fikri Işik at the start of a two-day high-level conference to present Horizon 2020 to Turkish research organisations and policy makers. More than 750 representatives of Turkish universities and businesses are due to take part in the event.

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22 May 2014

Towards a jointly funded and co-owned EU-Africa research and innovation partnership with first focus on food and nutrition security and sustainable agriculture.

Photo from the meeting
The members of the Expert Working Group of the EU-Africa High Level Policy Dialogue on science, technology and innovation.

Less than one month after the EU-Africa Summit 2014, the expert working group of the EU-Africa High Level Policy Dialogue on science, technology and innovation was kicked off in Brussels on 30 April. The group consists of 10 EU and African high level experts from the domain of agricultural research and innovation for development and is tasked with developing a detailed roadmap concretely defining the scope and outlining the different steps to be taken towards this new partnership.

As a first step, the experts have been asked to look into the major common challenges between the EU and Africa in the domain of food and nutrition security and sustainable agriculture and how science, technology and innovation could support tackling the issues at stake. The impact of the partnership must be of mutual benefit, albeit with different dimensions. This is by no means an easy exercise and several meetings, either virtual or physical are foreseen to accompany the process between now and November.

The end result should be an operational roadmap that can be translated into actions to be funded by all the stakeholders concerned including the European Commission, the African Union Commission, the European and African countries or the private sector. These actions should give rise to a truly co-owned and jointly financed research and innovation partnership.

  • 4th EU-Africa Summit
  • Africa page
  • For more information: Nienke Buisman, European Commission, DG Research and Innovation, International Cooperation Department, policy-officer EU-Africa cooperation on science, technology and innovation
25 February 2014

CONACYT announces its commitment to finance Mexican institutions and researchers participating in Horizon 2020 calls.

Photo of two folders withe the Mexican and EU flags

Aiming to encourage the participation of Mexican entities in the Horizon 2020 Program and in order to strengthen bilateral relations between the European Union and Mexico in Science, Technology and Innovation, the National Council of Science and Technology (Conacyt) launched the ”CONACYT- H2020 call” on February 25th. This new mechanism will fund the participation of Mexican researchers in all areas of Horizon 2020.

Mexican entities aiming to participate in a European consortium may apply to Conacyt for financial support. Conacyt will review the Mexican application and, if they approve it, will guarantee the financing of the Mexican partner, should the proposal subsequently be selected by the EU.

The CONACYT-Horizon 2020 Call can be consulted at the official website of Conacyt. Deadlines of every call of H2020 and other supporting documents are available on the site.


12 February 2014

Commission launches Horizon 2020 in South Mediterranean region: "Meeting EuroMed Common Challenges" Conference

The European Commission organized a regional conference on Sunday 9 February 2014 to launch Horizon 2020 in the EuroMed region. The conference, "Meeting EuroMed Common Challenges", brought together around 500 policy makers, researchers, representatives from academia and industry and research institutes, technology transfer centers, incubators, and technology platforms from the Euromed region. Participants and speakers came from all over the Euromed region, including Egypt, Spain, Italy, UK, Germany, Greece, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, Jordan as well as representatives of the EC.

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11 February 2014

Horizon 2020 Launch in Israel

Horizon 2020 was officially launched in Israel on 3 February 2014 at the Open University in Ra'anana. The event, organised by ISERD, attracted over 400 participants from academia, government and the private sector. The number of participants and the lively exchanges that took place during question time and in the corridors highlighted Israeli researchers' keen interest in Horizon 2020.

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4 February 2014

The Challenges of Water and Wastewater Treatment for Rural Areas

Between 12 and 16 January 2014, over fifty Israelis, Palestinians and Jordanians gathered for an intensive technical seminar on wastewater treatment which was organized by the Towns Association for Environmental Quality – Agan Beit Natufa (TAEQ) and the Migal Galilee Research Institute. The seminar was held in TAEQ’s prize winning Green Building, in Sakhnin -North Israel.

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28 January 2014

Destination Europe

Photo of the Chair and and Keyspeakers
Chair of the Conference, Dan Andree (Chair of SFIC) with keynote speakers Prof Emma Teeling (University College Dublin, ERC Grantee) Prof Sierd Cloetingh (Utrecht University, Member of ERC Scientific Council

The 5th Destination Europe Conference took place in San Francisco on 12 and 13 December. This initiative, launched by Commissioner Geoghegan-Quinn in 2012, and organized under the umbrella of the Strategic Forum for International Cooperation (SFIC), responds to Commitment 30 of the Innovation Union to attract and retain highly skilled researchers to Europe.

The well over 200 researchers and multipliers who participated learned about the career and funding opportunities offered in Europe for researchers of any nationality. In addition to presentations on H2020, the European Research Council, Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, and Euraxess, there were presentations from CERN and Member States and Associated Countries outlining how researchers can access their programmes and initiatives. The EU programmes were also presented in a dedicated Destination Europe session at the Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Union.

14 January 2014

EU and South Africa to step up cooperation in science, technology and innovation

Photo of the participants
The 12th Joint Science and Technology Cooperation Committee meeting in Brussels

The EU and South Africa will step up collaboration in the fields of global health research, earth observation and research infrastructures, senior officials agreed at a meeting in Brussels on Jan. 13. The 12th Joint Science and Technology Cooperation Committee meeting took place to review and plan new priorities of collaboration under the new EU research and innovation programme Horizon 2020 and similar South African research programmes.

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International Research Update
issue 50, November 2014

  • Carlos Moedas: the new face of Research, Science and Innovation
  • Director for International Cooperation promotes H2020 in Peru
  • 7th EU-Mexico Joint Committee
  • Open Science Days in Montenegro

November 2014  PDF icon 1.2 MB