Extra funds largely go towards the EU’s R&D missions alongside €25 million Ukrainian support scheme
The European Commission has added almost €562 million to the Horizon Europe R&D programme budget for 2021-22, taking it to nearly €16 billion.
The lion’s share of the additional funding is going towards the EU’s recently launched R&D missions, but additional money has also been made available to support researchers fleeing the conflict in Ukraine and for innovation schemes.
“Horizon Europe shows not only its forward-looking vision to create a healthier, greener and digital Europe but also its solidarity to support displaced researchers of Ukraine,” said Margrethe Vestager (pictured), Commission executive vice-president, as the new funds were announced on 10 May.
Over €500 million is going to the five R&D missions, launched in September 2021. The missions are aimed at increasing the impact of researchers’ work on major social challenges, covering climate, cancer, oceans, cities and soil.
The additional funds will be used for 17 new calls under the missions, which have previously been allocated €1.9 billion over the first three years of Horizon Europe.
A €25 million scheme for supporting researchers who had worked in Ukraine before the Russian invasion has been funded under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions programme, which supports the international mobility of researchers.
The scheme, run by organisations already involved in an EU-funded programme for scholars at risk, will provide fellowships for PhD students and postdoctoral researchers to continue their work at institutions in the EU and in countries associated to the Horizon Europe programme.
Vestager said the scheme means researchers fleeing Ukraine will “have the possibility to continue their research, for science to triumph over war”.
The Commission has also amended its work programme for Horizon Europe to explicitly ban organisations from Russia, Belarus or in non-government controlled territories of Ukraine to receive funding.