In DepthEUROPE

Brexit deal secures U.K. access to research funds

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Science  08 Jan 2021:
Vol. 371, Issue 6525, pp. 110-111
DOI: 10.1126/science.371.6525.110

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Summary

The Brexit cliffhanger has ended with a favorable outcome for U.K. researchers. Just 1 week before a 1 January deadline, negotiators struck a long-term agreement on trade and cooperation that will ease the United Kingdom's exit from the European Union. The deal also includes a hoped-for provision for science—a relief for many scientists. In exchange for a contribution to the EU budget, the United Kingdom will join the forthcoming Horizon Europe research program, which will spend €85 billion over the next 7 years. U.K.-based researchers were among the largest beneficiaries of Horizon 2020, Horizon Europe's predecessor. They hoped that after Brexit, the country would pay for "associate" status, which allows researchers in non-EU countries such as Switzerland and Israel to apply for and receive EU funding. And the United Kingdom reached a deal in the end, despite fears that associate membership might be too costly.

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