The University of East Anglia is delighted that the UK will be re-joining the EU research programme, Horizon Europe.
With a budget of over £80bn, Horizon Europe is the largest and most successful research framework programme in the world, comprising an absolutely colossal number of different research and innovation funding opportunities.
Collaboration across borders is absolutely crucial for generating world-class research, because truly outstanding research tends to be done by people working internationally. Multiple perspectives, complementary expertise and diverse approaches to problem-solving are all vital ingredients in confronting the complex and inter-disciplinary challenges faced by populations across the world.
These challenges include climate change, food and nutrition, infectious diseases, sustainable agriculture, the healthcare needs of ageing populations, water security, energy efficiency, low carbon initiatives, and of course Artificial Intelligence (AI).
All of these topics represent a huge crossover with the work and expertise found at UEA and across the Norwich Research Park. So this announcement is good news for Norwich, for the wider region and the UK as a whole.
But these research challenges don’t begin and end at national borders, so it is vital to build and deliver international consortia to develop responses and solutions, achieving greater scale and impact, and enabling countries to achieve far more collectively compared to purely national efforts.
Being an active, EU research-intensive university enhances UEA’s global academic reputation and ranking because EU-funded programmes have a truly global impact, and so our research enjoys a much wider international reach.
In particular, one of UEA’s key strengths is its inter-disciplinary ethos, and the opportunities for the arts, humanities and social sciences disciplines within Horizon Europe are unparalleled.
Historically, the UEA research community has enjoyed considerable success in applying for EU funds. Our researchers are already looking to maximise the Horizon Europe opportunities ahead of us. We will work with the government to address wider challenges for international research collaborations. These include streamlining mobility and visa rules for those researchers coming to the UK, and making it easier for researchers in UK-anchored projects to travel and execute important field work.