Friday, 11 February 2011

'No FP8' Shock

The Commissioner for Science, Research and Innovation, Maire Geoghegan-Quinn is quoted in this week's Times Higher as saying that there will be no Framework Programme 8.

Blimey. But read on, and her grand vision becomes clearer. Speaking before the FP8 Green Paper was launched earlier this week, Ms Geoghegan-Quinn said that "we have been told that the bureaucracy is too much, that there is a huge administrative burden...European research funding is currently spread across too many small programmes...(and) in some cases there are different rules and procedures between them, making it more complicated to apply for funding."

So, instead of a speparate FP8 there will be a merged programme with the Competitiveness and Innovation Programme and European Union funding for the European Institute of Innovation and Technology. This central funding pool - the Common Strategic Framework - will allow researchers to make just one application for funding from all streams, and successful applicants will face just one accounting system when they receive a grant.

Simples, as that irritating meerkat says. Well, let's hope so. Thing is, there's been talk in the past about simplifying European funding, and it's not materialised yet. We'll watch and wait.

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