In a new statement, the European University Association and CESAER, an association of universities of science and technology in Europe, have expressed their shared concern about the unbalanced share of funding for research projects within the Horizon Europe clusters under the programme’s second pillar in comparison to projects further along in their development and implementation phases.
As such, and based on an analysis covering the first two years of Horizon Europe calls, the two associations call on the European Commission to rebalance the proportion of calls with lower, medium and higher Technology Readiness Levels (TRLs) for collaborative call topics in pillar II.
Further highlighting the importance of sufficient funding for lower TRL projects, the statement emphasises consequences, notably for key transformations in the green and digital transitions, cooperation between beneficiaries, and Europe’s leadership in deep-tech and key technologies.
Finally, beyond the problem at hand, EUA and CESAER reiterate the need to go beyond the notion of TRLs by exploring and piloting new approaches, and ultimately moving towards more modern and sophisticated methods within an interconnected model of innovation.
For further information, please consult the full statement: Future-proof Horizon Europe through balanced cluster calls.
The statement was developed in the context of the interim evaluation of the Horizon Europe programme. It will also inform EUA’s response to the ongoing public consultation on the EU’s Horizon Research and Innovation Programmes 2014-2027.
This article was first published on 22 February by EUA.