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Monday, October 8, 2012

EU FP7 $10 billion for 900,000 jobs 10-09

EU’s FP7 Programme offers largest number of funding opportunities yet

EU’s FP7 Programme offers largest number of funding opportunities yetThe EU’s Seventh Framework Programme has generated its biggest ever set of calls for proposals for European research.

With €8.1 billion (US$10.6 billion) put aside for research and innovation, the long-term impact of the current Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development is expected to generate 900,000 jobs, of which 300,000 in research.
Universities, research organizations and industry will be among more than 15,000 funding recipients in around 1,300 projects.

The calls, which target both innovation and a range of societal challenges such as preserving oceans and water, developing smart cities and combating brain diseases, will build a bridge to Horizon 2020, the next funding programmed for EU research, covering the years 2014-2020.

European Research, Innovation and Science Commissioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn said: "Knowledge is the currency of the global economy. If Europe wants to continue to compete in the 21st century, we must support the research and innovation that will generate growth and jobs, now and in the future.”

The Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) is the EU's main instrument for funding research in Europe and is also designed to respond to Europe's employment needs, competitiveness and quality of life.

Around €2.7 billion (US$3.5 billion) of the total research budget will help cement Europe's place as a world class destination for researchers. A large proportion is available through individual grants from the European Research Council who will invest €1.75 billion (US$2.3 billion) in the very best young and senior researchers to carry out their pioneering frontier research projects.

By the end of FP7 in 2013, it is estimated that the ERC will have awarded nearly 5,000 grants to individual top researchers. Through this ERC funding, around 16,000 PhD students and post-docs will also have been supported as team members.
Other individual grants will come from Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (€963 million – around US$1.3 billion) for research training and mobility, and some €1.2 billion (US$1.6 billion) is available for small and medium-sized enterprises.

Nearly €1.5 billion (US$2 billion) alone bas been earmarked to support ICT projects in 2013 including cloud computing to strengthen Europe’s scientific and technology base.

Additionally, a €12 million (US$15.7 million) pilot call for a new European Research Area Chairs initiative is being prepared to spread research efforts more widely. Five ERA Chairs will be hosted by universities and research institutions in less developed regions of five different EU countries.

Organizations and researchers from more than 100 countries all over the world are already involved in EU research programs.
Launched in 2007, FP7 has so far supported 19,000 projects involving over 79,000 participants from universities, research organizations and businesses across all EU Member States. So far, the total EU investment is €25.3 billion (US$33.1 billion).

By 2013 it is estimated that FP7 will have directly supported some 55,000 individual researchers' careers.