European scientists want Swiss on board Horizon research programme

The Federal Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL) is among the top universities in Europe © Keystone/Laurent Gillieron

An online signature campaign has been launched to re-admit Swiss and British researchers to the European Union Horizon programme.

This content was published on February 9, 2022 - 12:13

A joint initiative by Swiss and British universities and institutions calls for “open and barrier-free collaboration among Europe’s research and innovation actors”, according to a statementExternal link published on Tuesday.

The campaign is in response to the EU downgrading Switzerland to non-associated status in the programme, which hands out grants and gives access to prestigious scientific projects.

In 2021 the Swiss government rejected a draft treaty with Brussels binding it more closely to the European bloc. Britain is still waiting for a formal agreement with the EU following its withdrawal from the bloc more than two years ago.

The campaigners argue that political barriers hold up progress and closer cooperation which are in the interest of society.

“This has never been more important than now, as the world faces serious global challenges,” said the Science Europe organisationExternal link.

So far, more than 200 scientists have committed themselves to supporting the campaign.

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