Recognising the importance of science and innovation to society, productivity and economic competitiveness, the government has now provided reassurance to UK participants of the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Programme with a commitment to safeguard funding for research and innovation projects.
The Treasury has confirmed that it will underwrite funding for approved Horizon 2020 projects applied for before the UK leaves the European Union. As a result, British organisations have certainty over future funding and should continue to bid for Horizon 2020 Calls while the UK remains a member of the EU. The Treasury will underwrite the payment of such awards, even when specific projects continue beyond the UK’s departure from the EU. The latest Q&A on the guarantee can be found here.
It is positive to see the following quote in a recently published report to the European Commission from the High Level Group on maximising the impact of EU Research & Innovation Programmes: “Investing in the European future we want”.
“Whatever Brexit modalities are agreed between the UK and the EU by 2019, full and continued engagement with the UK within the post-2020 EU R&I programme remains an obvious win-win for the UK and the EU. The UK has one of the strongest science bases of all European countries. A positive cooperation model (e.g., based on mutual investment) should be established, so that the UK remains part of the European Research Area.”
The report is not binding but is encouraging of continued efforts to engage with European programmes. The report can be downloaded here.
Pre-publication of Horizon 2020 Energy 2018-20 Work Programme available
The European Commission has made a pre-publication of the Horizon 2020 Energy Work Programme for 2018 to 2020 available. This pre-publication has not been adopted or endorsed by the European Commission and is made public before the adoption of the Work Programme 2018-2020 to provide potential participants with the currently expected main lines of this Work Programme. This is a good opportunity to gain insight into the forthcoming Calls for Proposals but it is essential that you refer to the final version when it is published later this month. The pre-publication can be downloaded here.
European Information Days and Brokerage Event
The 2018-20 Call for Proposals from Horizon 2020 Energy are expected to be launched in November 2017. The European Information Days on the new Calls will be held on 23rd to 25th October in Brussels. Registration will open on 20th September. More information can be found here. The Information Days are now fully booked but will be broadcast online and recorded so you will be able to access the information.
Brokerage event on Horizon 2020 Energy Work programme 2018-2020
The European Technology and Innovation Platforms on Renewable Heating & Cooling (RHC-ETIP), Deep Geothermal (DG ETIP) and the DHC+ Technology Platform are organising a brokerage event focused on the upcoming Horizon 2020 Energy Work programme 2018-2020 on 16th November 2017 in Brussels. A Plenary Session will take place in the morning with representatives from the European Commission and Executive Agencies. In the afternoon the participants will attend parallel sessions according to their preferences. More information can be found here.
The European Commission is organising a workshop with R&I stakeholders to collect ideas for further simplification of the Framework Programmes in preparation for the successor programme to Horizon 2020. The workshop will take the form of an open discussion with practitioners at working level, going through the technical details of the processes, including proposal submission, evaluation, reporting, documentation, guidance for R&I grant implementation, and IT. Interested stakeholders are invited to participate via and web forum where a link to the webstreaming will be available. More details can be found here.
The final 2017 Call for Proposals closed on 7th September 2017. The Commission received 83 proposals. The proposals will now be evaluated and the results of the evaluation will be communicated to coordinators by 7th February 2018. A breakdown of the number of proposals received by Call area can be found here.
The 2017 Call for Proposals closed on 20th April 2017. Results have recently been communicated to the applicants. It is expected that the first grant agreements will be signed by December 2017. An overview of the results can be viewed here.
The European Commission has launched three Horizon 2020 energy prizes, which will encourage innovations and finding solutions in the areas of great importance to European citizens, culture and health, and by this contribute to one of the key challenges of Energy Union, which is to put citizens at its core. These prizes will reward innovative approaches to integrating solar energy into historical buildings, using renewable energy in hospitals, and developing products that help cut emissions by reusing CO2. The total value of the prizes is €3.25M. More information can be found here.
Now is a good time for you to consider joining one of our sector stakeholder groups. These continue to play an important role in helping to shape UK input to discussions on future European energy technology development spending priorities. But in parallel, in the light of the EU referendum result, they will increasingly now focus on providing input to the UK’s new, wider international energy innovation engagement priorities that are currently being developed and other possible activities related to international collaboration.
The UK Stakeholder Groups meet via conference call approximately four times per year. There are UK Stakeholder Groups for bioenergy, solar, wind, CCS, smart cities, smart grids, ocean and a group on energy efficiency is in the process of being set-up. Stakeholder group membership offers an opportunity to help influence policy at EU and UK levels; and to build your networks and knowledge to take advantage of the resulting opportunities.
It’s important to have representative groups made up of industry, academia and the public sector to help ensure feedback matches as closely as possible to UK priorities, strengths and interests. This should give UK organisations the best possible chance of success in securing EU funding and activity, along with wider international business opportunities against increasingly tough competition.
We are very interested in hearing from organisations, particularly trade associations or industry, about joining these stakeholder groups. Please contact the EU Energy Focus team if you would like more information or would like to explore joining.