October 2010

“Brussels in Brief”:
Highlights on EU policies and funding programmes related to the knowledge-based economy: The “Lisbon Strategy”

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  • General EU Information

    General EU Information

    • European Commission

      2010-10-27 - Commission adopts strategic priorities for 2011

      2010 has shown the readiness and ability of the EU institutions to meet adversity with resilience, decisiveness and solidarity, to tackle the unprecedented challenges of the financial and economic crisis. The task now at hand is to ensure that recovery is sustained. The European Commission has adopted its work programme for 2011 which translates these objectives into concrete actions. The Work Programme reflects the Commission’s determination to lead Europe out of the crisis and towards a future of prosperity, security and social justice.

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    • European Parliament

      2010-10-06 - 2010-07-10 - Brussels Session

      At the opening of today's plenary session in Brussels, Parliament's President Jerzy Buzek made reference to Monday's flood of toxic waste in Hungary, the anniversary of the murder of Russian journalist Anna Politkovskaya and the EP's support for abolition of the death penalty.

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      2010-10-18 - 2010-10-21 - Plenary Session - Strasbourg

      The award of the 2010 year Nobel Peace Prize to Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo was warmly welcomed by EP President Jerzy Buzek as he opened this week's plenary session in Strasbourg. The need for more action to combat poverty as well as human trafficking were among other issues on the plenary agenda highlighted by the president, who also took the opportunity to draw attention to the mid-term address he will give to a formal sitting of the House on Wednesday.

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  • EU policies and funding programmes for Research, Innovation, Training and Competitiveness

    EU policies and funding programmes for Research, Innovation, Training and Competitiveness

    • Research Policy

      • General points
        2010-10-07 - EU-funded scientists clinch Nobel Prize in Physics, Europe at top of research game

        The EU is proud to announce that two of its grantees, Professor Konstantin Novoselov and Professor Andre Geim of the University of Manchester in the UK, have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for their groundbreaking work in two-dimensional graphene.

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        2010-10-19 - Open access boosts citations, study confirms

        The power of open access (OA) publishing to enhance the impacts of research is highlighted by a new study carried out by scientists in Canada and the UK and published in the journal PLoS ONE. The researchers hope their findings will encourage more universities, research institutions and research funders to adopt OA self-archiving mandates, in which all research published under their auspices is made freely available to other researchers.

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      • European Research and Innovation projects
        • ICT
          2010-10-04 - EU project offers helping hand to overloaded police officers

          European communication companies, research institutions and police forces have come together to help police motorcycle officers carry out their work more safely, efficiently and effectively by offering them a new way of processing information and responding to demands. The MOVEON ('Multi-modal and multi-sensor zero-distraction interaction interface for two wheel vehicles ON the move') project received nearly EUR 2 million from the 'Information society technologies ' (IST) Thematic area of the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6).

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          2010-10-18 - Tourists 'visit' the Med without leaving home

          Tourists will no longer have to leave the comfort of their armchair to experience the splendours of the Mediterranean islands thanks to an EU-funded project that has created software providing three-dimensional (3D) versions of sandy beaches, sleepy village squares and cosy local hotels. Funding for the MEDISOLAE-3D project came from the European Commission's Interreg/Archimed and eContent programmes, with overall support totalling EUR 2.7 million.

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          2010-10-19 - EU funds project to tackle systemic financial market risks

          The crises that have hit the European and international financial markets over the last couple of years are forcing us to seek alternative measures to ensure fiscal sustainability. As part of its efforts to address this issue, the European Commission is supporting a new research project targeting the development of new systemic risk indicators for 'early warning systems' that would raise red flags on looming yet early-stage financial crises. The FOC ('Forecasting financial crises') project will give governments and bankers the ammunition they need to nip problems in the bud. FOC is financed by the 'Future and emerging technologies' Open Scheme (FET Open) under the 'Information and communication technologies' (ICT) Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) to the tune of EUR 1.8 million. The FOC consortium consists of researchers from Italy, Spain, Switzerland and the UK, as well as experts from the European Central Bank (ECB).

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          2010-10-21 - Scientists find brain waves can predict epileptic seizures

          Scientists from the Bernstein Center at the University in Freiburg in Germany have taken a step forward in the quest to predict epileptic seizures by monitoring the pre-seizure changes in sufferers' brains. The research study was funded in part by the EPILEPSIAE ('Evolving platform for improving living expectation of patients suffering from Ictal events') project, which received nearly EUR 3 million under the 'Information and communication technologies' (ICT) Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). The research was recently published in the journal Epilepsia.

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          2010-10-22 - EU project to tackle semantic interoperability issues in cloud platforms

          EU-funded researchers have kick-started an innovative project that aims to resolve semantic interoperability issues currently impacting cloud platforms and introduce a user-centric approach for applications that are built upon and deployed using cloud resources. The CLOUD4SOA ('A cloud interoperability framework and platform for user-centric, semantically enhanced service-oriented applications design, deployment and distributed execution) project is funded under the 'Information and communication technologies' (ICT) Theme of the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) to the tune of EUR 2.74 million.

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          2010-10-22 - How computers can read body language

          An EU-funded group of scientists has invented a host of innovative solutions ranging from escalator safety to online marketing that advances people's communication with computers. The MIAUCE ('Multimodal interactions analysis and exploration of users within a Controlled Environment') project received just over EUR 2 million under the 'Information society technologies' (IST) Thematic area of the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6) to evaluate and develop techniques to analyse the multi-modal behaviour of users within the context of real applications.

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          2010-10-25 - The future's bright for Europe's optical chips sector

          A new EU-funded project is set to dramatically bring down the costs of optical chips, helping Europe maintain its lead in this potentially lucrative market. Dubbed PARADIGM ('Photonic advanced research and development for integrated generic manufacturing'), the project has a budget of EUR 12.7 million, EUR 8.3 million of which comes from the 'Information and communication technologies' (ICT) Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

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          2010-10-27 - Breakthrough technology offers quicker, cheaper cancer screening

          Time consuming and expensive cervical cancer screening will become a thing of the past thanks to breakthrough technology developed by EU-funded researchers. Their discovery will allow large-range screening by non-medical personnel with almost immediate results and at a much lower cost than is possible with existing technology. The work is part of the MICROACTIVE ('Automatic detection of disease related molecular cell activity') project, which was funded under the 'Information society technologies' Thematic area of the EU's Sixth Framework Programme to the tune of EUR 1.6 million.

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        • Health
          2010-10-01 - Severe sepsis: when free haem runs wild

          Research into the mechanisms involved in severe sepsis has concluded that free haem - a component of haemoglobin containing iron and other atoms - plays a key role in the progression of the disease. The research also unveiled the therapeutic potential of a naturally occurring haem-scavenging molecule. The findings were published in the journal 'Science Translational Medicine' on 29 September 2010. The research, sponsored by American, Brazilian and Portuguese organisations, was also partly funded by the Xenome ('Engineering of the porcine genome for xenotransplantation studies in primates: a step towards clinical application') project and by the Gasmalaria ('Crosstalk between nitric and carbon monoxide in suppressing the pathogenesis of cerebral malaria') project. Each benefited from EU support, under the Sixth and Seventh Framework Programme respectively.

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          2010-10-04 - Chronic lymphocytic leukaemia sufferers get bigger lease on life

          A European team of researchers has discovered that adding the monoclonal antibody Rituxan to standard chemotherapy treatment for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) patients could raise their 3-year survival rate from 45 to 65%. The scientists hope their finding will help revolutionise first-line standard treatment practice for these patients, even if no permanent cure is ever found. The research was recently published in the Cancer Special Issue of The Lancet journal.

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          2010-10-05 - Scientists claim smart materials used in medical devices are safe

          Contrary to popular belief, modern technological materials such as shape memory alloys (SMAs) that are increasingly used in a wide range of medical devices and implants are entirely biocompatible and should not induce health problems, according to a European team of scientists. SMAs are favoured for their ability to be bent and squeezed into a target body cavity or vessel after which they then revert to their original, working shape, but concerns have been voiced about the toxicity of SMAs which often contain nickel or copper. The findings of the study were published in the International Journal of Immunological Studies.

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          2010-10-12 - Researchers piece together gene, obesity and fat distribution puzzle

          EU-funded scientists have identified 18 new gene sites that impact overall obesity and 13 new sites associated with distribution of fat. The researchers from Europe, as well as Australia, Canada and the US, used a near 250,000-strong sample to investigate genetic links with human traits. The findings of the two studies, published in the journal Nature Genetics, shed light on why some people are more susceptible to obesity while others are not.

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          2010-10-12 - Scientists discover AIDS drug attacks herpes virus

          A European team of researchers has discovered that raltegravir, the drug sold by pharmaceutical firm Merck under the name Isentress and used to treat AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome), could help treat the herpes virus. The study, funded in part by the SPINE2-COMPLEXES ('From receptor to gene: structures of complexes from signalling pathways linking immunology, neurobiology and cancer') project, which received EUR 12 million under the 'Life sciences, genomics and biotechnology for health' Thematic area of the EU's Sixth Framework Programme (FP6), could lead to the development of a drug capable of fighting the entire herpesvirus family.

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          2010-10-15 - EU-funded scientists identify key cell in blood-brain barrier

          The blood-brain barrier (BBB) plays a crucial role in protecting the brain from harmful substances, yet this powerful shield can be problematic when doctors need to get beneficial drugs into the brain. Now EU-funded researchers in Sweden hint at another component of the BBB which could potentially lead to novel treatment for various diseases. Presented in the journal Nature, the study suggests that pericytes, also known as Rouget cells, are the missing piece to this puzzle. The research was funded in part by the LYMPHANGIOGENOMICS ('Genome-wide discovery and functional analysis of novel genes in lymphangiogenesis'), which received EUR 9 million under the 'Life sciences, genomics and biotechnology for health' Thematic area of the EU's Sixth Framework Programme (FP6).

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          2010-10-21 - Parasites adapt to host's immune system, study shows

          The parasites that cause diseases like elephantiasis and river blindness develop and reproduce faster and in greater numbers when they encounter hosts with a strong immune system, new EU-funded research reveals. Writing in the journal PLoS Biology, the scientists from France, the UK and the US note that the findings could have implications for efforts to develop vaccines against these debilitating diseases. EU support for the work came from a Marie Curie grant as well as from the VARBO ('Vaccination against river blindness') and SCOOTT ('Sustainable control of onchocerciasis today and tomorrow') projects, which were funded under the international cooperation budget lines of the Fifth and Sixth Framework Programmes (FP5 and FP6) respectively.

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          2010-10-22 - Could malarial mosquito species be splitting in two?

          The species of mosquito behind most malarial transmission in Africa appears to be splitting into two distinct species, new research reveals. The findings, published in two studies in the journal Science, have serious implications for malaria control efforts, which need to ensure that they are effective against both strains. Meanwhile the scientists underline the importance of monitoring the genetic makeup of different strains of mosquito.

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          2010-10-28 - 1,000 Genomes Project paves way for greater understanding of genetic variation

          The 1,000 Genomes Project, an international initiative that is probing genetic variation in humans, has released the results of its pilot phase. The initial findings already shed new light on the nature of genetic variation as well as its influence on disease, human history and evolution. The study is published in the journal Nature, and the consortium's findings are available on the 1,000 Genomes Project website. The work was partly supported by the EU through the ADAMS ('Genomic variations underlying common behavior diseases and cognition trait in human populations') and READNA ('Revolutionary approaches and devices for nucleic acid analysis') project, both of which are funded under the Health Theme of the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

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        • Environment
          2010-10-01 - Study urges new conservation approach to prevent tiger extinction

          The world's remaining tigers live in tight clusters and only by securing these sites can this striking feline be given a real chance of survival, new research led by the US-based Wildlife Conservation Society shows. The study's findings, published in the PLoS (Public Library of Science) Biology journal, highlight that wild tiger numbers are at an historic low and claims that current conservation techniques are not slowing the decline in numbers. The research suggests that protecting tigers at priority sites can help reverse the decline of wild tigers in a rapid and cost-efficient manner.

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          2010-10-04 - Scientists investigate climate change impact on Arctic Ocean's dense water cascades

          Climate change is touching all corners of the planet, both above and below the Earth's surface. One of the areas most sensitive to changes in temperature is the Arctic, but scientists hope to provide insight into how to best protect this region. One of the teams active in the field is using EU funding to investigate the relationship between the area's dense water cascading phenomenon and climate change in a region west of the Svalbard Islands, located between Norway and the North Pole. Their research is funded in part by the HERMIONE ('Hotspot ecosystem research and Man's impact on European seas') project, which received EUR 8 million under the Environment Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme. The team is led by the University of Barcelona (UB) in Spain, and is hoping to expand knowledge of how deep-sea ecosystems work, determine how they contribute to the production of goods and services, and pinpoint how human activity affects the ocean floor.

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          2010-10-04 - New guidelines to reconcile mining and biodiversity policy

          The European Commission has today published new guidelines to clarify rules for extractive industries in protected natural areas. As demand for precious raw materials grows, access to land available for mineral extraction in the EU is becoming ever more important. Some minerals are found on land within Natura 2000, the EU's network of protected natural areas, and the new guidelines explain the procedures to be followed in such cases. The economic implications are high. The industry in question has a turnover of around €49 billion and provides employment for more than a quarter of a million citizens. Natura 2000 is a crucial tool in the fight against biodiversity loss, and it does not exclude human activities. On the contrary it is a flexible scheme that allows mining and quarrying provided they are sustainable in all respects, and are carried out without compromising the integrity of the network.

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          2010-10-05 - Census of marine biodiversity makes a splash

          Astonishing, luxuriant, complex: marine life on the blue planet, as catalogued by the scientists involved in the first global Census of Marine Life over the past 10 years, has turned out to be even more diverse than expected. Three publications and a highlight report released on 4 October 2010 complete the documentation on one of the world's largest scientific collaborations to date. Funded in part by the EU, the census was launched in 2000 in order to assess the nature, distribution and abundance of the various species that inhabit the oceans - a hugely ambitious remit that mobilised more than 2,700 scientists and 670 institutions around the world. Together, they have compiled a detailed picture of life at sea, which draws on the outcomes of more than 540 marine expeditions as well as intense research on dry land, in laboratories and archives worldwide. This planetary team of marine explorers was backed by a total investment of USD 650 million (around EUR 475 million). EU support for the census involved funding for a range of contributing projects, supported under the Sixth and Seventh Framework Programmes (FP6 and FP7).

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          2010-10-06 - Discovery of nano-size diamonds proves comet struck Earth 13,000 years ago

          An international team of scientists has discovered nanosize diamonds in the Greenland ice sheet, according to a study presented in the Journal of Glaciology. The diamonds, which number in the trillions and are so tiny that they can only be observed with special, highly magnifying microscopes, add credence to the controversial hypothesis that fragments of a comet struck North America and Europe approximately 12 900 years ago.

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          2010-10-08 - People squeezing life out of organisms with nitrogen

          Researchers from Denmark and the US have discovered that our planet's ecosystems are being overburdened with nitrogen generated by us. The burning of fossil fuels and a rise in industrial and agricultural activities are also boosting nitrogen levels. This excess nitrogen could have a serious impact on the climate, and is at the same time being compounded by the contamination of fresh waters and coastal zones through human activity. Published in the journal Science, the study has identified that greater use of sustainable, time-honoured practices would help curb any damaging impact on the environment.

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          2010-10-13 - Ancient animal loos shed light on climate change

          In a bid to investigate how the climate has changed over time, scientists have often turned to ice cores, lake sediments and tree rings. But now researchers from France and the UK have discovered another - albeit unusual resource - that is shedding new light on climate change, especially in drier areas: ancient animal urine. The team received a grant from the European Research Council for their study.

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          2010-10-14 - Climate change: demographics matter

          Changes in population size, ageing and urbanisation could have a major influence on global carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions over the coming decades, new research reveals. Writing in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) journal, scientists from Austria, Germany and the US write that curbing population growth could contribute up to 29% of the emissions reductions needed by 2050 to keep average global temperatures from rising to dangerous levels. If population growth remains low, by the end of the century it could account for up to 41% of the emissions reductions needed.

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          2010-10-15 - Better global water management for better environmental and economic benefits

          Rivers that serve 80% of the world's population are threatened by agricultural runoff, pollution and invasive species, according to a new international study. 'Riverthreat' was funded in part by the EU's EVOLTREE ('Evolution of trees as drivers of terrestrial biodiversity') project, which received just over EUR 14 million under the 'Sustainable development, global change and ecosystems' Thematic area of the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6). The findings were recently published in the journal Nature.

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          2010-10-20 - The value of nature: Groundbreaking report reveals critical economic importance of biodiversity

          A three-year study project examining the benefits the world gets for free from nature has published its final report. TEEB – The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity – has gathered the best available economic evidence showing that the costs brought by the degradation of ecosystems and the loss of biodiversity are nothing short of unaffordable for our societies. It has synthesised thousands of studies, examined valuation methods, policy instruments and examples of action from around the world. Referring to numerous case studies, the report concludes with ten recommendations to help citizens and policymakers factor biodiversity into everyday decisions. The European Commission is a major funder of the study, which was hosted by the UN environment programme.

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          2010-10-21 - TEEB study: make natural resources visible to global economy

          We easily determine how important a role commodities play on our economy, but what about our planet's natural assets? The impact of a healthy environment on the global economy is huge but often goes unnoticed. Forests, soils, freshwater and coral reefs are just some of Earth's resources that help fuel our economy; insects such as bees contributed over EUR 150 billion to the economy annually through pollination, for example. However, the significance of many of these 'ecosystem services' often remains invisible, triggering species loss and ecosystem degradation, according to the latest Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) study, a major global initiative supported by the European Commission Environment Directorate-General (DG Environment). The study was presented at the Convention on Biological Diversity's 10th Conference of Parties (CBD COP10) session in Nagoya, Japan on 20 October

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          2010-10-25 - Report card sounds warning bell for Arctic

          An international group of environmental experts is waving another red flag as new research from the Arctic region shows that the area is not getting any relief from climate change, which is impacting not only the ecosystems and the lives of creatures living there but also the weather patterns in the most populated parts of the northern Hemisphere. The findings are presented in the 'Arctic Report Card', an annual review of the conditions up north.

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          2010-10-27 - Fresh policies can help slow biodiversity loss

          Our planet's biodiversity is taking a big hit, but new research points to a potential slowing down of its decline if budding policies are in fact implemented. The latest analysis, which combines several major international studies of future species shifts and losses, comes under the auspices of the EU-backed global biodiversity science programme DIVERSITAS, the UNEP-WCMC (United Nations Environment Programme- World Conservation Monitoring Centre) and the Secretariat of the CBD (Convention on Biological Diversity). The analysis is presented in the journal Science.

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        • Agriculture
          2010-10-06 - EU project concocting enzyme cocktail for greener fuel

          Growing concerns about carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and fuel supply are encouraging Europeans to focus on biofuels as an alternative to fossil fuels, which are non-renewable resources. The DISCO ('Targeted discovery of novel cellulases and hemicellulases and their reaction mechanism for hydrolysis of lignocellulosic biomass') project, which has clinched almost EUR 3 million in financial support to find new ways of converting renewable materials into biofuels, is helping this effort. The project is funded under the 'Food, agriculture and fisheries, and biotechnology' Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

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          2010-10-14 - EU project fishes for pharmaceutical resources in the sea

          One of the world's most highly-regarded skincare products is 'Crème de la Mer', a cream containing fermented kelp that is used to moisturise skin. The cream was originally developed by Max Huber, a scientist at US space agency NASA, to treat severe chemical burns. Companies worldwide are working to identify and exploit various natural sources of compounds that could prove effective in drugs and other products. Joining this effort is an EU-funded team of scientists that is hunting for biologically active substances in marine organisms that could be suitable for use as a basis for pharmaceutical goods. The MAREX ('Exploring marine resources for bioactive compounds: from discovery to sustainable production and industrial applications') project has received EUR 6 million under the 'Food, agriculture and fisheries, and biotechnology' (KBBE) Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) to collect, isolate and classify marine organisms, including sea anemones, tunicates and micro and macroalgae, from the Mediterranean, Baltic and Arabian Seas as well as the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans.

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          2010-10-14 - Study unveils secret of crop-killing fungal pathogens

          Scientists in the US have worked out how fungi manage to reduce drag on their spores so as to spread them as high and as far as possible. They say their discovery could help researchers find new ways to control the spread of fungal pathogens such as sclerotinia that cause various diseases in crops like sunflowers to soybeans, and cost farmers billions of euro every year. The study was funded in part by the EU via a Marie Curie Fellowship worth some EUR 18,000 under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7). The findings were recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) journal.

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          2010-10-18 - Global drive to wipe out cattle plague nears finish line

          Scientists are bringing down the deadly cattle plague 'rinderpest', effectively locking into place the steps required for full eradication of this viral disease. It will be only the second time in history that people have succeeded in eradicating a viral disease - after smallpox which was wiped out 30 years ago. While the disease does not affect humans directly, it adversely affects people's pockets and tummies, as farmers contend with the loss of sick cattle or other hoofed animals, and in turn with economic loss or even famine.

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          2010-10-20 - EU funds drive food sterilisation efforts

          Researchers and industry actors have begun trials on a newly developed multilayered packaging applicable for high-pressure food sterilisation. The innovative packaging is an outcome of the EU-funded NOVELQ (Novel Processing Methods for the Production and Distribution of High-Quality and Safe Foods') project, which has received just over EUR 11 million under the 'Food quality and safety' Thematic area of the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6). Findings were recently presented at the facilities of Wageningen Universiteit en Researchcentrum (UR) Food and Biobased Research in the Netherlands.

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          2010-10-28 - Scientists solve Mendel's pea flower colour mystery

          Gregor Mendel, the 19th century Augustinian monk and scientist, heralded as the father of modern genetics, used the gene that controls pea flower colour to study the inheritance of certain traits in pea plants. But researchers have been baffled about how trait transmission actually works. Enter an EU-funded team of researchers that has uncovered the mystery behind one of science's most renowned biology experiments. Their latest study, funded in part by the GRAIN LEGUMES ('New strategies to improve grain legumes for food and feed') project, which received nearly EUR 15 million under the 'Food quality and safety' Thematic area of the EU's Sixth Framework Programme (FP6), sheds new light on the underlying molecular genetics behind Mendel's experiment.

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        • Transport
          2010-10-08 - Galileo: Secure satellite navigation for emergency and security services

          A special Galileo navigation service will be set up for better management of critical transport and emergency services, better law enforcement (police), improved internal security (border control) and safer peace missions. These are the core objectives of a European Commission proposal published today on the Public Regulated Service (PRS) access rules. Using highly encrypted signals, PRS will offer protection against threats to infrastructures dependent on satellite navigation technology so that PRS users can receive vital, often life-saving, information even when other infrastructures become unavailable. PRS is one of the important features of Galileo that adds value compared to other satellite navigation systems. The access to PRS will be limited to authorised governmental bodies.

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          2010-10-25 - Brno upgrades public transport ticketing system with EU-funded tool

          Travelling by public transport in Brno, the second largest city in the Czech Republic, is now a quick and efficient process thanks to the introduction of a new system of ticket vending machines this summer. The innovative system is an outcome of the CIVITAS ELAN ('Mobilising citizens for vital cities Ljubljana, Gent, Zagreb, Brno, Porto') project, which received almost EUR 18 million under the 'Sustainable surface transport' (SST) Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

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        • Nanosciences
          2010-10-08 - EU funds research into light capturing antenna

          EU-funded scientists have created an antenna that captures light in the same way the device normally captures aerial signals for a television or radio. They believe the discovery will help develop tools for industrial safety, defence and homeland security. The device, presented in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, is an outcome of the BIMORE ('Bio-inspired molecular optoelectronics') project, which received nearly EUR 3 million under the Marie Curie Research Training Networks mobility scheme of the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6).

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          2010-10-13 - Researchers develop method for detailed imaging of fragile bone structures

          Scientists working in Germany and Switzerland have developed a novel nano-tomography method, which uses X-rays to allow doctors to produce three-dimensional (3D) detailed imaging of fragile bone structures. This method could lead to the development of better therapeutic approaches to tackle the brittle bone disease osteoporosis, one of the most common disorders among older people. The new method was recently presented in the journal Nature.

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          2010-10-26 - Honey, I shrunk the synchrotron

          If you say 'synchrotron' to most scientists, they will picture an immense, highly expensive and rather rare facility designed to produce highly intense beams of light, such as the UK's Diamond Light Source that boasts a 500 metre circumference and cost GBP 263 million (EUR 297 million) to build. However, that could soon change, as EU-funded scientists have created a table-top device capable of producing synchrotron X-rays that are as intense as those produced by some of the world's largest X-ray facilities. The instrument, which is described in the journal Nature Physics, could make it simpler and cheaper to analyse materials in fields as diverse as medicine and aeronautic engineering. EU support for the work came from the LASERLAB-EUROPE ('The integrated initiative of European laser research infrastructures II') project, which received EUR 10 million under the Research Infrastructures budget line of the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

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        • Space
          2010-10-08 - How approachable is Venus?

          Latest updates from the Venus Express mission of the European Space Agency (ESA) reveal that the atmosphere high above the morning star's poles is 60% thinner than expected. A series of low passes has taken the spacecraft directly through the upper reaches of the planet's poisonous atmosphere. This experiment, unprecedented for Venus, has returned 10 measurements to date.

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        • Socio-economic sciences and Humanities
          2010-10-01 - European Commission releases report, 'Innovation: Creating knowledge and jobs - Insights from European research in socio-economic sciences'

          The European Commission has released the report, 'Innovation: Creating knowledge and jobs - Insights from European research in socio-economic sciences'. The Europe 2020 strategy to achieve smart, sustainable, and inclusive growth will have 'innovation' as one of its key drivers. On 1 June 2010, a conference was held in Brussels to discuss the many facets of innovation and how it plays into Europe's socio-economic sciences. The above mentioned publication draws from the discussions and presentation of this conference.

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          2010-10-05 - Teenage drinking on the rise, but not everywhere

          Fewer teens from western countries are getting drunk on alcohol compared to their peers in eastern Europe, new international research shows. The researchers have also found fewer cultural and gender-based differences, particularly as alcohol marketing activities have attracted more interest over the past 10 years. The report was released online on 4 October in advance of the February print issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

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          2010-10-06 - EU drives social science database hub

          Europe's database cooperation project for the social sciences will be hosted by NSD (Norwegian Social Science Data Service) in Bergen. From its northerly home, the secretariat of the consolidated research infrastructure (RI) of the Council of European Social Science Data Archives (CESSDA) will interact with dedicated resource centres in the contributing countries, says NSD Director Bjorn Henrichsen.

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          2010-10-15 - Political complexity evolves in small steps, study suggests

          Political complexity in human society evolves in small, incremental steps, according to new, EU-funded research published in the journal Nature. The scientists, whose work is highlighted on the cover of the journal, arrived at their conclusions after using methods which are usually applied to the study of biological evolution. EU support for the work, which involved scientists in Japan, New Zealand and the UK, came from the European Research Council (ERC) project CULTRWORLD ('The evolution of cultural norms in real world settings') with funding amounting to EUR 1.8 million.

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          2010-10-19 - FP6 research on social inequalities highlighted in new report

          A recently published European Commission report, 'Why socio-economic inequalities increase?', outlines a series of facts and policy responses to widening disparity and inequalities in Europe. While socio-economic inequalities continue to rise throughout much of the world, the report's authors deem that a new socio-ecological model is required. The publication is based on an extensive review of 13 research projects financed by the European Commission's Research Directorate-General under the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6). They investigated the processes underlying inequality, poverty and exclusion, and the effectiveness of strategies designed to promote social cohesion in Member States. The projects also looked into the actual mechanisms needed to offset inequalities.

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        • Security
          2010-10-26 - EU funds research for better evacuation and protection procedures

          Survivors of the terrorism bombings that took place in London on 7 July 2005 should contact UK-based researcher Ed Galea, who wants to use their experiences to help improve building designs and evacuation procedures around the world. The research study is funded in part by the BESECU ('Human behaviour in crisis situations: a cross cultural investigation to tailor security-related communication') project, which has received more than EUR 2 million under the Security Theme of the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

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      • Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Development 2007- 2013 (FP7)
        • News
          Become an expert evaluator for FP7

          The website to register as an expert for research activities is available on CORDIS. The call for experts is open both for individuals and for organisations.

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          2010-10-20 - ERC awards 427 top researchers with Starting Grants

          Since 2007, the European Research Council (ERC) is revolutionising research and investing in top talent, making it one of the most vital components of the European Research Area (ERA). Helping maintain this success are 427 early-career researchers who are being awarded EUR 580 million between them under the ERC's third 'Starting Grant' competition which supports up-and-coming research leaders who are carrying out independent research in Europe - regardless of the grantee's nationality.

          Further information
          2010-10-26 - José Manuel Silva Rodríguez wins Argentinean science prize 'Luis Federico Leloir' on intl cooperation in science, technology and innovation

          The former Research Director-General of the European Commission, José Manuel Silva Rodríguez, has been honoured with the 'Luis Federico Leloir' science prize, named after the 1970 Nobel laureate in Chemistry. The important Argentine prize is a testament to Leloir's contribution to international cooperation in science, technology and innovation.

          Further information
          2010-10-26 - 2010 "EU Industrial R&D Investment Scoreboard"

          The "EU Industrial R&D Investment Scoreboard" presents information on the top EU and non-EU companies investing the largest sums in research and development (R&D). The data are drawn from the latest available audited companies' accounts (2009).

          Further information
          2010-10-28 - RTOs boost EU annual economic growth by EUR 50 billion

          European Research and Technology Organisations (RTOs) contribute EUR 50 billion to the EU economy, according to a new study published on October 27. The report, put together by European research organisation the Technopolis Group, reveals that in addition to boosting economic growth, RTOs help tackle key challenges facing Europe, such as the need to develop innovative renewable energy supplies. However, the study said the organisations remain poorly understood and warned that national governments are failing to fully exploit their potential. RTOs received 32% of the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6)'s funding, noted the report.

          Further information
        • European Technology Platforms
          Advanced Engineering Materials and Technologies (EuMaT)

          No events planned

          Further information
          Advisory Council for Aeronautics Research in Europe (ACARE)

          No events planned

          Further information
          European Technology Platform for Wind Energy (TPWind)

          No events planned

          Further information
          European Technology Platform on Smart Systems Integration (EPoSS)

          9-11 April 2014, Athens - InfoIndustrial Technologies 2014
          16-17 April 2014, Turin - A&T 2014: Innovative Technologies and Services for design, manufacturing and testing
          5-6 May 2014, Freiburg - MicroTEC Südwest Clusterkonferenz 2014
          7 May 2014, Lisbon - 1st Workshop on M2M Solutions and Services
          5-6 June 2014, Prague - EURIPIDES Prague Forum 2014
          11-13 June 2014, Vienna - pHealth 2014 - 11th International Conference on Wearable Micro and Nano Technologies for Personalized Health
          23-24 June 2014, Berlin - AMAA 2014: 18th International Forum on Advanced Microsystems for Automotive Applications "Smart Systems for Safe, Clean and Automated Vehicles"
          23-25 June 2014, Bremen - Actuator 2014: 14th International Conference on New Actuators and 8th Exhibition on Smart Actuators and Drive Systems
          1-2 July 2014, Dortmund - Smart SysTech 2014: European Conference on Smart Objects, Systems and Technologies
          2-4 July 2014, Birmingham - esIoT-2014: 3rd International Workshop on Extending Seamlessly to the Internet of Things
          2-4 July 2014, Bremen - SysInt 2014 - 2nd International Conference on System-Integrated Intelligence: New Challenges for Product and Production Engineering
          8-11 July 2014, Besançon - AIM 2014, IEEE/ASME International Conference on Advanced Intelligent Mechatronics "From Smart Systems to Smart Matters"
          7-10 September 2014, Warsaw - Workshop on Trends and Applications in Intelligent Environments (TAIE'14)
          22-24 September 2014, Marseille - M2M Innovation World Congress 2014
          23-25 September 2014, Darmstadt - MSE 2014: International Conference Materials Science Engineering
          24-26 September 2014, Turin - EPoSS General Assembly, Annual Forum & Engagement Day 2014
          11-14 November 2014, Munich - Electronica 2014: 26th International Trade Fair for Electronic Components, Systems and Applications

          Further information
          European Technology Platform Food for Life (Food)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          Forest Based Sector Technology Platform (Forestry)

          9-11 April 2014, Athens - Industrial Technologies 2014 conference & exhibition
          29-30 April 2014, Santander - FOREST EUROPE Workshop on Green Economy and Social Aspects of SFM
          6 May 2014, Berlin - DEMOWOOD Final Conference
          8-9 May 2014, Vienna - EARTO Annual Conference
          15-18 May 2014, Lecce - European Biotechnology Congress
          20-21 May 2014, Munich - Symposium Innovative Packaging
          21-26 June 2014, Copenaghen - EuroScience Open Forum 2014
          23-26 June 2014, Hamburg - 22nd European Biomass Conference & Exhibition
          10-12 September 2014, Bilbao - EFI 2014 Annual Conference
          15-18 September 2014, Helsinki - Bioenergy from Forest Conference
          17-18 September 2014, Freiburg - COOL Conference (Competing uses Of forest Land Project)
          23-26 September 2014, Gerardmer - 5th Forest Engineering Conference & 47th International Symposium on Forestry
          29 September-01 October 2014, Bologna - LET's 2014 - Leading Enabling Technologies for Societal Challenges
          7-9 October 2014, Reims - EFIB 2014
          17-20 November 2014, Brussels - 6th European Innovation Summit

          Further information
          Embedded Computing Systems (ARTEMIS)

          9-11 April 2014, Athens - Industrial Technologies
          14-17 April 2014, Berlin - CPS Week 2014
          14 April 2014, Berlin - WORKSHOP:CPS 20 years from now - visions and challenges
          23-24 April 2014, Monaco - Celtic-Plus Event 2014
          19-20 June 2014, Istanbul - Sabanci University Microelectronics Workshop
          10-12 September 2014, Florence - SAFECOMP 2014
          23-25 September 2014, Amsterdam - ITEA PO Days

          Further information
          Nanoelectronics Technologies 2020 (ENIAC)

          10-11 April 2014, Paris - Journées Industrielles « NANOMATÉRIAUX »
          13-16 May 2014, Gaithersburg - The Tenth International Nanotechnology Conference on Communication and Cooperation (INC 10)
          19-20 June 2014, Istanbul - Sabanci University Microelectronics Workshop
          23-24 June 2014, Grenoble - CATRENE DTC (European Nanoelectronics Design Technology Conference)
          25-26 June 2014, Grenoble - Leti Days (applied research in the fields of microelectronics, IT and technology for health care and other areas)
          22-26 September 2014, Venice - 40th European Solid-State Circuits Conference (Esscirc) & 44th European Solid-State Device Conference (Essderc 2014)
          7-9 October 2014, Grenoble - SEMICON Europa 2014
          5-7 November 2014, Brno - NANOCON

          Further information
          European Rail Research Advisory Council (ERRAC)

          14-17 April 2014, Paris - 5th Edition of TRA 2014
          17 June 2014, Brussels - ERRAC Steering Committee

          Further information
          European Road Transport Research Advisory Council (ERTRAC)

          14 April 2014, Paris - TRA 2014 Conference
          20 May 2014, Brussels - ERTRAC Steering Group
          5 June 2014, Brussels - ERTRAC Plenary
          7 October 2014, Brussels - ERTRAC Plenary

          Further information
          European Space Technology Platform (ESTP)

          No events planned

          Further information
          European Steel Technology Platform (ESTEP)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          European Technology Platform for the Electricity Networks of the Future (SmartGrids)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          Future Manufacturing Technologies (MANUFUTURE)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          European Technology Platform for the Future of Textiles and Clothing (Euratex)

          22-23 April 2014, Moscow - “LEGPROMFORUM-2014” - 1st INTERNATIONAL FORUM OF LIGHT UNDUSTRY
          8-9 May 2014, Istanbul - 7th International Instanbul Fashion Conference
          14-16 May 2014, Brugges - 6th European Conference on Protective Clothing
          5 June 2014, Brussels - Textile and Clothing International Conference
          10-12 September 2014, Austria - 53rd Dornbirn Man-Made Fibers Congress
          24-26 September 2014, Barcelona - OUTLOOK 2014 - The World's premier Personal Care Products Conference
          29 September-1 October 2014, Medellin - 30th IAF World Fashion Convention
          1-2 October 2014, Berlin - FILTREX Europe 2014, your Filtration Conference & Exhibition
          4-6 November 2014, Istanbul - Messe Frankfurt announces the launch of Texworld
          18 November 2014, Brussels - 3rd EURATEX CONVENTION
          18-19 November 2014, Brussels - 3rd PPE Lead Market Conference 2014
          4-7 May 2015, Franckfurt - Texprocess 2015

          Further information
          Fuel Cells and Hydrogen (FCH)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          Industrial Safety ETP (IndustrialSafety)

          9-11 April 2014, Athens - ETPIS at the Industrial Technologies 2014 Conference 
          13-16 April 2014, Bologna - 6th International Conference on Safety & Environment in Process & Power Industry
          24-27 August 2014, Frankfurt - XX World Congress on Safety and Health at Work 2014
          30 September-3 October 2014, Glasgow - WOS2014 "Learning from the past to shape a safer future"
          1 October 2014, Berlin - 3rd International Conference on Fires in Vehicles (FIVE)
          14-16 October 2014, Roma - 48th International Carnahan Conference on Security Technology

          Further information
          Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI)

          21 May 2014, Brussels - IMI Stakeholder Forum 2014

          Further information
          Integral Satcom Initiative (ISI)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          Mobile and Wireless Communications (eMobility)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          Nanotechnologies for Medical Applications (NanoMedicine)

          9-11 April 2014, Athens - Industrial Technologies 2014
          23-26 April 2014, Antalya - NANOTOX 2014
          21 May 2014, Brussels - IMI Stakeholder Forum 2014
          26-30 May 2014, Lille - E-MRS Spring Meeting: Converging technology for nanobio applications
          2-4 June 2014, Munster - InfoNanobio Europe 2014
          15-19 June 2014, Tel Aviv - Summer School on Nanomedicine and Innovation
          22-25 June 2014, Basel - European Summit for Clinical Nanomedicine 2014
          30 June-2 July 2014, Sydney - 5th International NanoMedicine Conference
          5-12 July 2014, Thessaloniki - NANOTEXNOLOGY 2014
          8-11 July 2014, Thessaloniki - 11th International Conference on Nanosciences & Nanotechnologies
          27-29 August 2014, Angers - International Meeting - Translational Nanomedicine 2014
          29 September-1 October 2014, Bologna - LET’S 2014 Conference: Leading Enabling Technologies for Societal challenges
          2-4 October 2014, Porto - 2014 Workshop: Tools and models for the translation of advanced drug delivery
          15-16 October 2014, San Sebastian - ETP Nanomedicine Annual Event 2014
          3-5 November 2014, Frankfurt - BIO-Europe 2014
          5-7 November 2014, Brno - 6th International Conference NANOCON 2014
          18-20 November 2014, Grenoble - 4th International Conference NANOSAFE 2014

          Further information
          Networked and Electronic Media (NEM)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          Networked European Software and Services Initiative (NESSI)

          24 April 2014, Brussels - ONE: Conference - Policies (R)evolution and Speeding Every European
          12-13 June 2014, Luxembourg - 5th European Summit on the Future Internet
          17-18 June 2014, London - Big Data World Congress: Discover the business value of Big Data
          10-12 September 2014, Salerno - CCPI'14: Workshop on Cloud Computing Projects and Initiatives

          Further information
          Photonics21 (Photonics)

          9-11 April 2014, Copenhagen - 6th living knowledge conference 2014
          9-11 April 2014, Athens - Industrial Technologies 2014
          11-15 April 2014, Montpellier - ISCS 2014 and IPRM 2014
          14-17 April 2014, Brussels - SPIE Photonics Europe Conference and Exhibition
          5-9 May 2014, Baltimore - SPIE Defense and Security
          7-8 May 2014, Barcelona - Smart Lighting 2014
          7 May 2014, Aachen - EPIC EU funding session
          12-13 May 2014, Munich - Rohde & Schwarz: Broadcast and Digital Media Innovation Forum
          20-22 May 2014, Lyon - LumiBat 2014
          20-22 May 2014, Lyon - CapUrba 2014 - The city planning and innovative Urban project trade fair
          26-30 May 2014, Aveiro - International Conference on Applications in Optics and Photonics - AOP2014
          26-28 May 2014, Munich - LOPEC 2014: 6th International Exhibition and Conference for the Organic and Printed Electronics Industry
          2-3 June 2014, Munich - Siemens New Venture Forum Europe 2014
          9-13 June 2014, San Jose - CLEO: 2014 Laser Science to Photonic Applications
          10 June 2014, Rome - EPIC Workshop on High Resolution Imaging for Security and Defense
          18-19 June 2014, AR's-Hertogenbosch - EPIC Workshop on Photonic Integrated Circuits "Electronics - Photonics Integration and Packaging"
          18-21 June 2014, Paris - 12th European Congress on Digital Pathology
          24-26 June 2014, Nice - Next Generation Optical Networking
          2-3 July 2014, Rotterdam - EPIC Workshop on Intra-Operative Assessment of Tumor-Resection Margins
          2-8 July 2014, Barcelona - Fab10 Barcelona
          22-23 July 2014, Stuttgart - Bosch Venture Forum
          28-31 July 2014, Barcelona - Advanced Photonics
          17-21 August 2014, San Diego - SPIE Optics + Photonics 2014
          25-29 August 2014, Berlin - EPIC Entrepreneurship Week
          25-29 August 2014, Marseille - Laser-light and Interactions with Particles
          27-29 August 2014, Prague - PHOTONICS PRAGUE 2014 - 7th International Conference on Photonics, Devices and Systems
          28-30 August 2014, Vienna - OPTICS 2014 - 5th International Conference on Optical Communication Systems
          22-25 September 2014, Amsterdam - SPIE Remote Sensing 2014
          22-25 September 2014, Amsterdam - SPIE Security and Defense 2014
          30 September-2 October 2014, Bregenz - LED professional Symposium and Exhibition
          19-23 October 2014, Tucson - Frontiers in Optics 2014
          11-12 November 2014, Goteborg - Optics & Photonics
          5-6 December 2014, Lyon - Light Festival Expo 2014

          Further information
          Photovoltaics (PV Platform)

          No events planned

          Further information
          Plants for the Future (Plants)

          22-26 June 2014, Dublin - Plant Biology Europe FESPB/EPSO 2014 Congress

          Further information
          Robotics (EUROP)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          European Technology Platform for Sustainable Chemistry (SusChem)

          9-11 April 2014, Athens - Industrial Technologies 2014
          29-30 April 2014, London - 3rd Annual Smart to Future Cities 2014
          12 May 2014, Darmstadt - Raw Materials University Day
          14 May 2014, Brussels - CRM_InnoNet 2nd Innovation Network Workshop
          28-29 May 2014, Taragonna - 3SCICC Sustainable Chemistry Forum
          11-12 June 2014, Bruxelles - SusChem 12th Stakeholder Event - Sustainable Chemistry: At the Forefront of Innovation

          Further information
          Sustainable Nuclear Energy Technology Platform (SNE-TP)

          9-11 April 2014, Manchester - Sustainable Nuclear Energy Conference 2014
          1-4 June 2014, Zadar - 10th International Conference on the Nuclear Option in Countries with Small and Medium Electricity Grid
          16-19 June 2014, Toronto - 5th international CANDU In-service inspection workshop and the NDT in Canada 2014 Conference
          7-11 July 2014, Prague - 22th International Conference on Nuclear Engineering
          1-4 September 2014, Paris - TINCE, 2nd International Conference on Technological Innovations in Nuclear Civil Engineering
          14-16 October 2014, Paris - World Nuclear Exhibition

          Further information
          Water Supply and Sanitation Platform (WSSTP)

          No events planned.

          Further information
          Waterborne ETP (Waterborne)

          14-17 April 2014, Paris - TRA 2014 calls for competitions
          3-5 June 2014, Brussels - SG50 + MG and WTB General Assembly
          17 September 2014, Brussels - SG51+ MIRROR GROUP

          Further information
          Zero Emission Fossil Fuel Power Plants Technology Platform (ETP ZEP)

          22-24 April 2014, Stavanger 4th EAGE CO2 Geological Storage Workshop
          28 April-1 May 2014, Pittsburgh - The Annual CCUS Conference

          Further information
          European Technology Platform on Renewable Heating & Cooling (RHC)

          No events planned.

          Further information
        • Joint Technology Initiatives
          Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI)

          21 May 2014, Brussels - IMI Stakeholder Forum 2014

          Further information
          Embedded Computing Systems (ARTEMISA)

          7-11 April 2014, Hannover - HANNOVER Messe 2014
          9-11 April 2014, Athens - Industrial Technologies
          14-17 April 2014, Berlin - CPS Week 2014
          14 April 2014, Berlin - WORKSHOP: 'CPS 20 years from now - visions and challenges'
          23-24 April 2014, Monaco - Celtic-Plus Event 2014
          19-20 June 2014, Istanbul - Sabanci University Microelectronics Workshop
          10-12 September 2014, Florence - SAFECOMP 2014
          23-25 September 2014, Amsterdam - Sabanci University Microelectronics Workshop

          Further information
          Nanoelectronics Technologies 2020 (ENIAC)

          9-11 April 2014, Athens - Industrial Technologies 2014
          10-11 April 2014, Paris - Journées Industrielles « NANOMATÉRIAUX »
          13-16 May 2014, Gaithersburg - The Tenth International Nanotechnology Conference on Communication and Cooperation (INC 10)
          19-20 June 2014, Istanbul - Sabanci University Microelectronics Workshop
          23-24 June 2014, Grenoble - CATRENE DTC (European Nanoelectronics Design Technology Conference)
          25-26 June 2014, Grenoble - Leti Days (applied research in the fields of microelectronics, IT and technology for health care and other areas)
          22-26 September 2014, Venice - 40th European Solid-State Circuits Conference (Esscirc) & 44th European Solid-State Device Conference (Essderc 2014)
          7-9 October 2014, Grenoble - SEMICON Europa 2014
          5-7 November 2014, Brno - NANOCON

          Further information
          Aeronautics and Air Transport (Clean Sky)

          23-25 April 2014, Prague - ASD Annual Convention
          30 April 2014, Tel Aviv - Clean Sky 2 Info Day
          22 May 2014, Berlin - Clean Sky 2 is Taking Off

          Further information
          Fuel Cells and Hydrogen (FCH)

          No events planned.

          Further information
    • Innovation policy

      2010-10-06 - The "Innovation Union" – turning ideas into jobs, green growth and social progress

      The European Commission's "Innovation Union", tabled today, sets out a strategic approach to innovation, driven by the highest political level. The Innovation Union will focus Europe's efforts – and co-operation with third countries - on challenges like climate change, energy and food security, health and an ageing population. It will use public sector intervention to stimulate the private sector and to remove bottlenecks which stop ideas reaching the market. These include lack of finance, fragmented research systems and markets, under-use of public procurement for innovation and slow standard setting. The Innovation Union is a "flagship" in the Europe 2020 Strategy.

      Further information
      2010-10-07 - Communication for innovation

      In a communication presented on 6 October 2010, the European Commission maps out the road towards the Innovation Union, marking a new milestone for this flagship initiative launched as part of the Europe 2020 strategy. The communication details comprehensive and decisive action to achieve Innovation Union and underlines the need for political determination. Designed to boost green growth and social progress, the Innovation Union would concentrate Europe's combined efforts on key challenges such as climate change, energy and food security, health and the demographic change linked to an ageing population. The strategy to bring it about calls for public sector intervention to stimulate the private sector and eliminate the factors that complicate entrepreneurial efforts to bring innovative ideas to market.

      Further information
      2010-10-18 - Role of innovation in addressing future challenges highlighted

      The role of innovation is pivotal in tackling the economic, social and environmental challenges facing Europe, according to the recent Second European Innovation Summit held at the European Parliament in Brussels, Belgium. But getting ideas to market is a road often hampered by administrative bottlenecks and red tape. The causality is European competiveness and research in the global economy. The summit, opened by Vice-president of the European Parliament Silvanan Koch-Mehrin under the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the European Union, discussed the role of innovation in energy efficiency, urban and regional mobility, sustained food security and agriculture, healthy ageing, and sustainable production. The gap, however, between the research conducted in these fields and the implementation of their results in the single market is widening.

      Further information
    • Education policy

      2010-10-12 - Commission wants more universities to offer courses for translators

      The European Commission has launched a new drive to encourage more European universities to offer high-quality courses for students who want to work as translators. As part of this, the Commission is expanding its 'European Master's in Translation' (EMT) university network, which was set up last year in response to a growing shortage of properly qualified translators in the job market. As well as being a network, the EMT is a recognised quality label. To date, 34 European universities have successfully applied to join the network (see link below for list). Universities wishing to use the EMT label have their courses assessed by translation experts, who are mostly members of the existing network. The EMT network meets for its annual conference in Brussels from 11 -13 October.

      Further information
      2010-10-20 - The big stage: 50th anniversary of the Commission's traineeship programme

      What do King Mohammed VI of Morocco, Mario Monti, Silvana Koch-Mehrin and Barack Obama's economics advisor Michael Froman all have in common? They were all once trainees at the European Commission. More than 40 000 young university graduates have participated in the Commission's traineeship programme since its launch in 1960. It is the longest running traineeship programme of its kind and the biggest in the world in terms of the numbers annually recruited. The trainees, or "stagiaires" as they are more commonly known, work with the Commission's full-time officials on a wide range of tasks for a five-month period. Some have gone on to become European Commissioners and MEPs, while others became kings and even journalists. The Commission is hosting a conference in Brussels today to mark the 50th anniversary of the traineeship programme, also known as "Le Stage".

      Further information
    • Information society

      2010-10-01 - Study finds IT experts particularly prone to work stress

      The information technology (IT) industry is famous as a driver of innovation. But according to the results of a recent study, innovation within the sector is being held back - not because of funding or infrastructure, but because IT workers are particularly prone to burnout.

      Further information
      2010-10-05 - What do princes, apps and caring robots have in common?

      Answer: ICT 2010, the 'Digitally Driven' showcase of information and communications technology hosted by the European Commission. This biennial event lived up to its billing as Europe's leading forum for ICT research and innovation. More than 5,000 researchers, industry leaders, policy-makers and even a prince sampled the fruits of 25 years of EU-funded ICT research in Brussels from 27-29 September.

      Further information
      2010-10-14 - ICT research: EU funded project helps to map pollution

      Real time maps of air, ground and water pollution can now be made available to everyone thanks to an EU-funded research project called INTAMAP. The INTAMAP project has developed open specifications software to draw up contour maps that not only show the exact location of polluted areas but also illustrate where pollution is coming from and where it is headed. Such information enables public authorities to decide more quickly on appropriate action to tackle the source of the pollution and allows individuals to avoid it. Researchers from Austria, Belgium, Germany, Greece, The Netherlands and the UK worked on the project which received some €1.8 million in EU funding. Applying ICT research to benefit Europe's citizens and businesses is a key element of the Digital Agenda for Europe adopted by the Commission in May 2010.

      Further information
      2010-10-18 - ICT research: Commission-backed project to help identify systemic financial market risks

      The European Commission is investing in a research project to develop new systemic risk indicators for “early warning systems” that could alert governments and bankers to impending financial crises in the earliest stages and take early action to stop them from spreading. Researchers from universities in Italy, Spain, Switzerland and the UK, experts at Yahoo! and the European Central Bank will investigate how financial institutions are exposed to systemic risk as a result of complex, highly inter-connected digital information and transaction systems. Based on a new multi-disciplinary research approach, the project will analyse the complex system of global, ICT-based financial transactions, along with internet search queries, to monitor the build-up of risk in the financial system and the economy as a whole.

      Further information
    • Enterprises

      2010-10-20 - Commission welcomes European Parliament approval for new rules against late payment

      European Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani welcomes the European Parliament vote today in favour of a new directive on combating late payment in commercial transactions. The directive will give better protection to creditors, in most cases SMEs, while respecting the freedom of contract. Public authorities will have to pay within 30 days, or else pay an interest rate of 8%. This measure is expected to result in an extra €180 billion of liquidity being available to businesses.

      Further information
      2010-10-26 - R&D and the economic crisis: top EU firms cut investment less than US rivals, but Europe still well behind

      The European Commission's 2010 "EU Industrial R&D Investment Scoreboard" shows that R&D investment by top EU companies fell by 2.6% in 2009, even though sales and profits fell much more, by 10.1% and 21.0% respectively. The fall in R&D investment by leading players in the US, at 5.1%, was twice as sharp as in the EU, but the worldwide reduction was lower, at 1.9%. Japanese firms maintained their level of investment. Companies based elsewhere in Asia - China, India, Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan - continued the high R&D growth seen in previous years. Japanese car maker Toyota is the world's biggest R&D investor (€6.8bn) for the second consecutive year. Three EU companies feature in the top ten: Volkswagen, the biggest investor based in Europe with €5.8bn, Nokia and Sanofi-Aventis. The Scoreboard covers the top 1400 companies worldwide.

      Further information
      2010-10-28 - Industry for Europe - Europe for industry

      Industry must be placed centre stage if Europe is to remain a global economic leader. This is the core message of the Communication on "An integrated industrial policy for the globalisation era" adopted by the European Commission today on the initiative of Vice-President Antonio Tajani. The Communication, a flagship initiative of the Europe 2020 strategy, sets out a strategy that aims to boost growth and jobs by maintaining and supporting a strong, diversified and competitive industrial base in Europe offering well-paid jobs while becoming less carbon intensive. It is accompanied by a report on the competiveness performance of individual Member States (see MEMO/10/533) and the annual European Competitiveness Report.

      Further information
  • Other EU Policies and funding programmes supporting the Lisbon Strategy

    Other EU Policies and funding programmes supporting the Lisbon Strategy

    • Employment and social affairs

      2010-10-26 - Flexible work arrangements help both employers and employees, says new European Commission study

      A European Commission study released today found that employers and workers benefit from flexible working time arrangements. The expert group report comes as ministers for gender equality gather in Brussels for an informal meeting to discuss the new strategy for equality between women and men 2010-2015.

      Further information
      2010-10-28 - EU meets social partners on boosting growth and jobs through stronger cooperation and better governance

      The President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy and Belgian Prime minister Yves Leterme – for the Presidency of the Council – met this morning at the Tripartite Social Summit with the European workers' and employers' representatives. The summit focussed on the economic reform agenda and economic governance.. It debated how the Europe 2020 strategy could achieve smart, sustainable and inclusive growth and employment and ensure social cohesion, equity and the upholding of the European social model. The prime ministers of the future presidencies Orbán and Tusk, Belgian Employment minister Milquet and László Andor, EU Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion were also present.

      Further information
    • Competition

      2010-10-13 - Competitiveness Council takes on innovation, patents and more

      Innovation, patents and simplification topped the agenda at the latest meeting of the Competitiveness Council in Luxembourg on 11 and 12 October. Summing up the outcomes of the gathering, Jean-Claude Marcourt, who is among other things Minister for the Economy, SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises), Foreign Trade and New Technologies of the Belgian region of Wallonia said: 'Member States are relying on innovation.'

      Further information
    • Internal Market

      2010-10-18 - European Commission acts to expand the use of e-procurement in the EU

      The European Commission is today launching a consultation on e-procurement. Taking the form of a Green Paper, the consultation will seek the views of interested parties on how the EU can help Member States to speed up and facilitate the procurement process. E-procurement refers to the use of electronic communication and transaction processing by government institutions and other public sector organisations when buying supplies and services or tendering public works. The Green Paper identifies obstacles to faster take-up of e-procurement as well as the risks that divergent national approaches present for cross-border participation in on-line procurement. It sets out options for overcoming these challenges including, for example, regulatory incentives, standardisation and inter-operability solutions. At the same time, the Commission is also unveiling its new e-CERTIS data base which is a free, web-based tool to help companies and contracting organisations cope with the documentation demands encountered when tendering for public contracts in the EU.

      Further information
      2010-10-22 - Investments, real estate and internet access among lowest ranking consumer markets

      "Investments, pensions and securities", "real estate services" and "internet service provision" are the three markets most likely to be failing consumers across the EU, according to the autumn 2010 Consumer Markets Scoreboard published today. Among goods markets, "second-hand cars", "clothing and footwear" and meat have scored lowest. At the other end of the spectrum, airlines show good results in spite of the disruptions of spring 2010 and consumers also appreciate cultural goods and services. The Scoreboard ranks consumer markets by looking at indicators such as comparability, consumer trust, consumer satisfaction, problems, complaints, the ease of switching providers, prices, etc. The purpose is to identify markets that appear most at risk of malfunctioning, for follow-up studies, which analyse problems in-depth and identify policy responses. For the first time, the Scoreboard ranks as many as 50 different markets – from food to domestic appliances to car repair – in all EU countries.

      Further information
      2010-10-27 - European Commission sets out plans to strengthen the Single Market with measures to boost growth and enhance citizens’ rights

      The European Union’s Single Market is the cornerstone of more than 60 years of European integration. Barriers that once stopped goods and services from freely flowing from Lisbon to Helsinki have been torn down. Companies now benefit from a market of 500 million consumers. Consumers travelling abroad have seen dramatic cuts in mobile phone charges. A single currency has made shopping and travelling abroad effortless. Workers now benefit from extensive rights. People can work, study and live anywhere in the EU’s 27 Member States. While Europeans can be proud of these achievements, businesses and citizens also know that hurdles still exist when they exercise their rights. The European Commission set out a series of concrete solutions in two reports published today to boost the single market. In the EU Citizenship Report, the Commission proposes measures to make peoples’ lives easier when they exercise their EU rights to get married, buy a house or register a car in another EU country. To boost growth, competitiveness and social progress, the Single Market Act calls for action to make the lives of all market participants – companies, consumers and workers – easier.

      Further information
    • Environment

      2010-10-08 - Biodiversity: Assessment confirms EU has missed 2010 target, but important lessons learned

      A report published today confirms that the EU has missed its target of halting the loss of biodiversity by 2010. The assessment of implementing the Commission's Biodiversity Action Plan shows that Europe's biodiversity remains under severe threat from the excessive demands we are making on our environment, such as changes in land use, pollution, invasive species and climate change. Nevertheless, the assessment reveals that significant progress has been made over the last two years. Important lessons learned from implementing the action plan will underpin the EU's post-2010 strategy.

      Further information
      2010-10-12 - Climate change: European Union making deeper emission cuts than promised

      The European Union is ahead of schedule in its promise to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 2012. The Commission's annual report shows that the 25 member states with reduction targets under the Kyoto Protocol will meet their commitments.

      Further information
      2010-10-18 - Seas and oceans a 'grand challenge', scientists say

      The seas and oceans are one of the 'grand challenges' for the 21st century, the European marine and maritime science community has said in the Ostend Declaration. The declaration was issued at the close of the EUROCEAN 2010 conference, which took place in the Belgian coastal town on 12 and 13 October. The researchers hope that the declaration will guide efforts to address the challenges facing Europe's seas in the coming decade and exploit the opportunities they present.

      Further information
      2010-10-18 - Commission rewards companies for championing the EU Ecolabel

      The European Commission will announce the winners of the 2010 EU Ecolabel Communication Awards at a ceremony in Brussels tonight. The award recognises outstanding achievement in increasing public awareness of the EU Ecolabel – the European Union's label for environmentally-friendly products and services. The fast-growing label can now be found on almost 25,000 products and tourist accommodation services throughout the European Union and beyond.

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      2010-10-26 - EU to preserve unique habitats, flora and fauna in the first transboundary protected area in south-east Europe

      The European Commission has proposed that the EU ratify an agreement to protect the sustainable development of the Prespa Park area in south-east Europe. The agreement was negotiated by the European Commission, Greece, Albania and FYROM. The Prespa Lakes and their surroundings are a unique natural area with high ecological significance, which will be best preserved through a holistic approach at basin level. The Agreement is a step change in the existing local cooperation arrangements and should ease the successful implementation of the aims of the EU Water Framework Directive in the area. The Prespa Park Area was designated as a transboundary protected area by Greece, Albania and FYROM, and is the first example of a transboundary protected area in south-east Europe.

      Further information
    • Health

      2010-10-12 - European Consumer Centres - 5 years at the service of European consumers

      Have you ever ordered online, paid for the goods and never received them? Then the European Consumer Centre can be of help to you. Between 2005 and 2009, the European Consumer Centres Network (ECC-Net) handled almost 270.000 contacts with EU consumers who turned to them for advice or help on cross-border shopping, according to the ECC-Net 5th anniversary report published by the European Commission today. The number of annual contacts has been rising steadily, from about 43.000 in 2005 to over 60.000 in 2009. The annual value of amicable settlements of complaints with traders (in reimbursements and compensation for consumers) reached € 3.5 million in 2008. The European Commission and Member States co-finance the ECC-Net which offers consumers free legal advice and assistance in every EU country as well as Norway and Iceland. Online purchases continue to be the main source of complaints for cross-border consumers: in 2009 they represented more than half (55.9%) of all complaints received.

      Further information
      2010-10-12 - EU earmarks €250 million to combat animal diseases and better protect both human and animal health

      Aiming to further strengthen the protection of human and animal health, the European Union earmarked today more than €250 million to support programmes to eradicate, control and monitor animal diseases in 2011. Member States endorsed the financial package proposed by the European Commission during today's meeting of the Standing Committee on the Food Chain and Animal Health (SCoFCAH). The 138 annual or multi-annual programmes, which have been selected for EU funding, will tackle animal diseases that impact both human and animal health. More than half of the total sum will be used to finance programmes to eradicate 8 important animal diseases.

      Further information
    • Transport

      2010-10-04 - Motorcycle safety and emission performance: European Commission proposes substantial improvements

      The European Commission has proposed the mandatory fitting of advanced braking systems on new motorcycles and automatic headlamp-on switching for all L-category vehicles. This category covers a wide range of vehicles such as two- or three-wheel powered cycles, mopeds, motorcycles with and without a side-car, tricycles, on-road quads and mini-cars. The proposal sets also ambitious emission requirements for these vehicles. In addition by introducing enhanced market surveillance requirements, a level playing field will be created for all L-category vehicle manufacturers in a sector where presence of non-compliant products may cause significant safety risks and environmental threats. At the same time it is proposed to radically simplify the current legislative set of 15 Directives by replacing them with just 5 Regulations.

      Further information
      2010-10-13 - Better road safety: European Road Safety Days 2010

      For the third time, European Road Safety Days are being held on 13 and 14 October 2010 in Brussels. On this occasion the European Commission is organising, in cooperation with the Belgian Presidency, a conference which will examine several issues: those injured in road accidents, the challenges facing different categories of road users, and infrastructure. The conference will attribute particular importance to the cross-border fight against the offences which cause most deaths and will also be the occasion to present the strategic guidelines on European road safety policy for the period 2011-20. Taking part alongside Siim Kallas, Commission Vice-President in charge of transport, will be Mr Etienne Schouppe, Belgian Federal Minister for Mobility, and Mr Brian Simpson, Chair of the European Parliament's Transport and Tourism Committee.

      Further information
      2010-10-20 - New Aviation Platform to address challenges for the European aviation sector

      European Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas, responsible for of transport, today met top-level representatives of the European aviation sector to discuss future challenges for aviation in Europe at the first-ever meeting of the Aviation Platform. The Aviation Platform has been set up to give strategic advice to the Vice President in order to establish the basis for a sustainable future for air transport and a competitive future for the European aviation industry.

      Further information
      2010-10-20 - New European legislation to boost rail freight

      Rail freight in Europe will be given a boost thanks to new European Union rules designed to foster the development of a high-quality rail infrastructure management at international level. The new legislation, published today in the Official Journal, makes it mandatory to create a European rail network for competitive freight based on international freight corridors. This will help to reinforce cooperation between infrastructure managers and make rail freight services become more competitive and attractive.

      Further information
      2010-10-26 - Galileo: signature of major contract leading to initial services in 2014

      The European Commission announced today the signing of a fourth contract, out of a total of six, for the procurement of full operations capability for Galileo, Europe’s global navigation satellite programme. The contract has been awarded to SpaceOpal GmbH - a joint venture created by DLR GfR (Germany) and Telespazio S.p.A (Italy) - for the operations of the space and ground infrastructure This will lead to the initial deployment and service provision of Galileo in 2014.

      Further information
      2010-10-27 - Transport: Commission reviews funding for 92 major Trans-European Networks infrastructure projects

      European Commission Vice President Siim Kallas today published the first ever mid term review of 92 priority Trans-European Networks infrastructure projects, co-financed by the Commission under the TEN-T programme for 2007-2013. The review provides a detailed "snap shot" of the state of play of each major infrastructure project in terms of financing and completion. The aim is to introduce more accountability into the funding process and to make sure that EU money is being well spent. Over half (52.2%) of these 92 major pan-European infrastructure projects are still on track for completion by December 2013, despite the tough financial environment. For the rest, the mid term review applies a strict "use it or lose it" principle. A two year extension is granted to credible projects which are facing difficulties in the economic crisis, to support their completion. But for projects which, at this mid term stage, are no longer credible, EU funding will be cut and re-allocated (see below for lists of projects).

      Further information
    • Agriculture and fisheries

      2010-10-04 - Europe approves € 500 million of Food Aid for the Needy for 2011

      Food aid plans submitted by Member States for the 2011 Aid for the Needy Scheme were voted in the Single CMO Management Committee. Next year 20 Member States will use the scheme – with the Czech Republic participating for the first time. Originally designed to provide surplus stocks of farm produce ('intervention stocks') to needy people, the scheme was amended in the mid-1990s to make it possible to supplement intervention stocks with market purchases in certain circumstances. However, this year existing intervention stocks (cereals, milk powder, limited quantities of butter) cover most of the needs for the 2011 plan, so only limited recourse to market purchases is necessary. The allocated budget of 500 million Euros is the same as for the 2009 and 2010 plans. The scheme for 2011 is not related to the recent adapted proposal to adjust the scheme in future [see IP/10/1141]. The 2011 plan will now be adopted by the Commission in the near future.

      Further information
    • Energy

      2010-10-13 - Offshore oil drilling: European Commission envisages EU safety rules

      The European Commission for the very first time envisages comprehensive EU legislation on oil platforms aimed at ensuring the highest safety standards in the world. In the Communication on the safety of oil and gas activities the Commission contemplates new EU standards, including criteria for granting drilling permits, controls of the rigs and safety control mechanisms.

      Further information
    • Maritime Affairs

      2010-10-06 - No increase in deep-sea fishing opportunities 2011-2012

      The European Commission proposes not to grant increases in fishing opportunities for deep-sea fish in EU waters and in international waters of the North-East Atlantic for 2011-2012 until positive trends in the abundance of deep-sea stocks have been properly identified. The Commission's proposal is based on scientific advice. However, some important Total Allowable Catches (TACs) will be kept stable. The Commission also remains committed to phasing out fishing for deep-sea sharks and orange roughy until there is clear evidence regarding the level of unavoidable by-catch of these valuable species.

      Further information
      2010-10-12 - EurOCEAN 2010: European Research ready for maritime challenge

      Research is essential to the sustainable use of European marine waters. Over 300 researchers and policy makers are meeting at the conference 'EurOCEAN 2010: Grand challenges for marine research in the next decade' in Ostend today and tomorrow to outline the research and policy needs for the next decade. They will present a state-of-the-art overview of the issue and shed light on what Europe still needs for its “blue future”. European Commissioners Maria Damanaki (Maritime Affairs and Fisheries) and Máire Geoghegan-Quinn (Research, Innovation and Science) will participate at the conference and present the EU's approach to marine research as a trigger for smart growth and jobs.

      Further information
      2010-10-21 - Commission presents roadmap towards more efficient and cost-effective maritime surveillance

      The European Commission today set out concrete steps to enhance the effectiveness and cost efficiency of surveilling European Seas. In a roadmap, the Commission spells out how to bring together relevant Member States' authorities across all maritime sectors to allow for the exchange of maritime surveillance data, held by authorities such as coast guards, traffic monitoring, environmental monitoring, pollution prevention, fisheries, border control, tax and general law enforcement authorities, as well as navies. This increased cooperation would also help cope more efficiently with real time events at sea. The 'Roadmap towards establishing the Common Information Sharing Environment ('CISE') for the surveillance of the EU maritime domain', is an initiative under the EU's Integrated Maritime Policy, which advocates an integrated approach to the management and governance of the oceans, seas and coasts, and fosters interaction between all sea-related policies in the EU.

      Further information
  • Research, Innovation, Training and Competitiveness related EU events

    Research, Innovation, Training and Competitiveness related EU events

Special chapter on training opportunities

Next Sessions in English in Brussels

Prochaines sessions en français à Paris et Bruxelles

Le montage des projets sous le nouveau programme européen de recherche et d'innovation (Horizon 2020)

Date : mardi 29 avril 2014

Comment rédiger une proposition réellement compétitive? Conseils stratégiques et méthodologiques.

Formations dispensées par d’anciens "Project Officers" de la Commission européenne ayant une expérience pratique des projets européens de R&D.

Lieu : Paris - Langue de formation : Français

Prix : 599€ HTVA

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Plus d'information

Les contrats européens de recherche : module financier sous le nouveau programme de recherche et d'innovation (Horizon 2020)

Date : mercredi 30 avril 2014

Session d'approfondissement - Comprendre les règles financières sous le nouveau programme de recherche et d'innoovation (Horizon 2020). Comment préparer votre budget? Comment gérer votre budget?

Formations dispensées par d’anciens "Project Officers" de la Commission européenne ayant une expérience pratique des projets européens de R&D.

Lieu : Paris - Langue de formation : Français

Prix : 599€ HTVA

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Plus d'information

Horizon 2020: Comment comprendre le nouveau programme européen de recherche et d'innovation

Date : mardi 13 mai 2014

Formations dispensées par d’anciens "Project Officers" de la Commission européenne ayant une expérience pratique des projets européens de R&D

Lieu : Paris - Langue de formation : Français

Prix : 599€ HTVA

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Plus d'information

Le montage des projets sous le nouveau programme européen de recherche et d'innovation (Horizon 2020)

Date : mercredi 14 mai 2014

Comment rédiger une proposition réellement compétitive? Conseils stratégiques et méthodologiques.

Formations dispensées par d’anciens "Project Officers" de la Commission européenne ayant une expérience pratique des projets européens de R&D.

Lieu : Paris - Langue de formation : Français

Prix : 599€ HTVA

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Plus d'information

Horizon 2020: Comment comprendre le nouveau programme européen de recherche et d'innovation

Date : mardi 03 juin 2014

Formations dispensées par d’anciens "Project Officers" de la Commission européenne ayant une expérience pratique des projets européens de R&D

Lieu : Paris - Langue de formation : Français

Prix : 599€ HTVA

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Plus d'information

Les contrats européens de recherche : module financier sous le nouveau programme de recherche et d'innovation (Horizon 2020)

Date : mercredi 04 juin 2014

Session d'approfondissement - Comprendre les règles financières sous le nouveau programme de recherche et d'innoovation (Horizon 2020). Comment préparer votre budget? Comment gérer votre budget?

Formations dispensées par d’anciens "Project Officers" de la Commission européenne ayant une expérience pratique des projets européens de R&D.

Lieu : Paris - Langue de formation : Français

Prix : 599€ HTVA

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Plus d'information

Audits et contrôles de votre contrat européen de recherche

Date : mardi 17 juin 2014

Les audits et contrôles de votre contrat européen de recherche.
Comment s’y préparer et comment y réagir?

Formations dispensées par d’anciens "Project Officers" de la Commission européenne ayant une expérience pratique des projets européens de R&D.

Lieu : Paris - Langue de formation : Français

Prix : 599€ HTVA

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Plus d'information

Le management de projets européens de recherche sous le nouveau programme de recherche et d'innovation (Horizon 2020)

Date : mercredi 18 juin 2014

Management de projets européens de recherche. Comment gérer efficacement et simplement un projet européen de recherche sous Horizon 2020?

Formations dispensées par d’anciens "Project Officers" de la Commission européenne ayant une expérience pratique des projets européens de R&D.

Lieu : Paris - Langue de formation : Français

Prix : 599€ HTVA

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Próximas sesiones en español a Madrid