The European Commission has announced its decision. The Graphene' and Human Brain' projects, presented by Chalmers University of Technology in Gothenburg, Sweden, and the Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL) in Switzerland, have been selected for funding as Future and Emerging Technologies (FET) flagship initiatives. Each consortium is set to receive 1 billion to carry out their project over a ten-year period.

The initiative, launched by Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes, aims to establish information and communication technologies (ICT) in tomorrow's scientific landscape. The bulk of the funding will be provided under the EU's Horizon 2020 research programme, which will start in 2014 and run for seven years. Horizon 2020 is no longer limited to the Commission's traditional R&D framework programmes, but also encompasses the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) and elements of the innovation framework programme. Although the commissioner has announced financing of up to 100 million per year and per project for ten years, the reality may turn out to be more complex and difficult. Kroes said, on 28 January, that the winners will receive funding of "up to 54 million under the Commission's 2013 ICT work programme" and subsequent funding from the EU's following research framework programmes, but also from "private partners, including universities, member states and industry". There is also a major unknown factor: the Horizon 2020 budget (the Commission has proposed 80 billion), on which the European Council still has to come to a decision.

"Europe's position as a knowledge superpower depends on thinking the unthinkable and exploiting the best ideas," said Kroes, who presented the projects to the press, on 28 January.


Graphene is the latest nanotechnology material made up of a single layer of graphite. Two researchers...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT