How to design inclusive research funding schemes

30 Apr 2024 | News

Bart Veys, head of policy at COST, walks us through the design of Horizon Europe’s researcher networking fund

Bart Veys, head of policy at COST (European Cooperation in Science and Technology). Photo credits: COST

Research isn’t always a level playing field. More men than women become researchers and they are more likely to progress to senior positions. A few top research organisations and universities get significantly more funding than most of the others. Some countries and regions significantly outperform others in research activity.

This lack of equity has been an issue across the EU’s research programmes and persists in Horizon Europe. But there have been long running attempts to design inclusive research instruments that open doors for all types of researchers. This is what COST, the European Cooperation in Science and Technology, has been doing for the last 50 years.

COST is a networking scheme for researchers that acts as a ‘portal’ to other funding instruments, such as the €95.5 billion Horizon…