|Framework Programme 7 (FP7)
FP7 is the main mechanism for supporting collaborative, trans-national research and technological development in the EU. The programme represents the third largest item in the EU budget and operates on an internationally collaborative basis.
The broad objectives of FP7 have been grouped into four categories:
Budget of approximately 32,413 million over seven years.
Supports all types of research activities carried out by research bodies in trans-national co-operation. Thematic areas: health, food, agriculture and fisheries, biotechnology, ICT, nanosciences, nanotechnologies, materials and new production technologies, energy, environment, transport, socio-economic sciences and humanities, space and security.
Budget of approximately 300 million a year.
Proposes a trans-European mechanism to support creative scientific research.
Involves creation of European Research Council (see below).
Budget of approximately 4.7 billion over seven years.
Will cover all stages of researchers' professional lives from initial training to continuing professional development
Budget of 4,097 million over seven years.
To enhance research and innovation capacities through Europe in six areas: research infrastructures; research for the benefit of SMEs; regions of knowledge and support for regional research-driven clusters; research potential of Convergence Regions; science in society; support for the coherent development of policy; and international co-operation.
European Research Council (ERC)
Part of the FP7 Ideas programme.
Will fund investigator-driven research across all fields of science with evaluation based on sole criterion of excellence. Funding will be granted to individual European scientists with no requirement for trans-national collaboration.
European Research Area Networks (ERA-NETs)
An FP6 funding mechanism, expanded in FP7, designed to promote cooperation and co-planning between funders of national research programmes. UK Research Councils are involved in more than 20 ERA-NETs.
European Institute of Technology (EIT)
EIT is intended to help strengthen innovation performance across the European Research Area. It will set up strategic long term partnerships between various players in knowledge transfer. Discussions about the EIT are on-going with aim of establishing it in 2008 with a budget of 2.4 billion.
European Technology Platforms (ETPs)
Provide a framework for stakeholders, led by industry, to define research and development priorities, timeframes and action plans on a number of strategically important issues where achieving Europe's future growth, competitiveness and sustainability objectives is dependent upon major research and technological advances in the medium to long term.
Joint Technology Initiatives (JTIs)
The Commission is launching JTIs under FP7. They will pool funding from the private sector, European and national research programmes towards common research goals in priority technology areas.