Over the weekend, the UK government announced a commitment to EU funded research projects when the UK leaves the European Union.
The announcement confirms that the Treasury will underwrite funding for approved Horizon 2020 projects applied for before the UK leaves the European Union. The Treasury went on to say “As a result, British businesses and universities will have certainty over future funding and should continue to bid for competitive EU funds while the UK remains a member of the EU.
The announcement has been heavily criticised since it only relates to funds won whilst the UK is a member of the EU, but falls short of making any commitments for when the UK leaves the EU. Scientists for EU have commented on the announcement “the reason why the Chancellor’s announcement is decidedly underwhelming is that they represent no boost to science, but rather the most minimal assurances possible.”
However, it is hoped that the announcement will ensure the UK is not viewed as a risk to European partners and therefore will help to maintain stability across the research community.