News & Views
UK Safety Net for Horizon 2020 Projects
Oct 11 2018 Read 453 Times
During September a new system was rolled out as a first step towards supporting the continuity of funding for UK organisations which have been awarded grants from the European Union’s flagship programme for science and innovation, Horizon 2020. UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) is asking recipients of Horizon 2020 grants to input basic information about their awards into a bespoke portal. This will ensure that UKRI can keep UK researchers and businesses informed of the next steps if the government needs to underwrite Horizon 2020 payments.
While both the UK and the EU’s intention is that UK researchers and businesses will continue to be eligible to participate in Horizon 2020 for the remaining duration of the programme, as set out in the Financial Provisions of the draft Withdrawal Agreement, the UK Government is planning for all eventualities to ensure that cross-border collaboration in science and innovation can continue after EU exit. Having announced two years ago that it would underwrite UK funds for all EU-funded projects successfully bid for while the UK was still a member of the EU and with an extension to that guarantee issued in July this year, the development of the portal by UKRI is said to have been designed to capture basic information about recipients’ grants and identify a relevant contact at the participating organisation for the project - likely to be the LEAR (Legal Entity Appointed Representative) – so participants could be informed of the next steps should a no deal scenario arise.
UK Research and Innovation Chief Executive, Professor Sir Mark Walport, said: “It is extremely important that, if required, the underwrite guarantee for Horizon 2020 funding is administered effectively and UKRI is committed to putting in place the mechanisms that will support this. I urge our partners in research and business to work with us to capture the information we need via this portal.”
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