Science minister happy with EU's next research and innovation framework

Brussels, 30 November - The EU ministers in charge of competitiveness approved Horizon Europe, the next research and innovation framework for the period 2021-2027. Slovenian Minister of Education, Science and Sport Jernej Pikalo believes this to be one of the best EU programmes in general, the ministry said in a press release.

Pikalo said in the debate that this was an ambitious programme that will allow Europe to preserve its competitive edge. EUR 100bn have been earmarked for the framework, which is EUR 20bn more than in the current Horizon 2020 framework.

Slovenia is happy that excellence in science is one of the key principles of the next framework, according to the ministry.

Pikalo believes that the directive on the framework should also define ways in which Horizon Europe increases the value added in the EU and how it helps shape research in the EU.

Slovenia is moreover promoting more cooperation, which would allow the inclusion of Slovenian researchers in the broader research sphere of the EU. A different scenario would lead to gradual marginalisation, he said.

One of the key issues for Slovenia will be the cooperation between the European Commission and member states in the management of the framework, according to the press release.

Slovenia believes that the contents of the framework are very general because it does not specify concrete goals, the ministry also said.

Pikalo also believes that the framework should be managed in a comprehensive way, which would require links with similar programmes, such as Digital Europe.