The European Commission has announced an investment of €8.5 billion to be released during 2017 into research and innovation, following an update to the Work Programme of Horizon 2020, the EU’s research and innovation funding programme.
The updated Work Programme outlines a more specific set of rules on research integrity to be followed by beneficiaries with the introduction of open research data in all new Horizon 2020 calls and the strong commitment to research integrity and simplification as a driver for research quality.
For projects funded under the programme, free online access to scientific data will become the norm.
The move is expected to boost competitiveness through open science by accelerating innovation and collaboration, improving transparency, and avoiding duplication of efforts.
This means that grant beneficiaries must take measures to enable third parties to access, mine, exploit, reproduce and disseminate research data underlying their scientific peer reviewed publications free of charge, EC informed.
Horizon 2020 beneficiaries are encouraged to also share datasets beyond these publications, with the option for projects to ‘opt-out’ of these provisions in case of conflicts with IPR, personal data protection, national security or other concerns.
According to EC, the funding opportunities offered by the Work Programme are directly aligned with the policy priorities of the Commission and will contribute to the jobs, growth and investment package, the digital single market, energy union and climate change policy, internal market with stronger industry and making Europe a stronger global actor.
Horizon 2020 is the EU’s biggest research and innovation framework programme with a budget worth €77 billion for 2014-2020.
Most EU research funding is allocated on the basis of competitive calls, but the budget for Horizon also includes funding for the Joint Research Centre, the European Commission’s in-house science service, the European Institute for Innovation and Technology and research carried out within the framework of the Euratom Treaty.