Top research officials in the European Commission describe several challenges for Framework Programme 9 (FP9), such as a delay in the start of the Programme and budget gaps due to Brexit and prioritization of defence and security.
There may be a delay in the start of FP9, because the Commission will only make its proposal for FP9 next summer, instead of at the end of this year. Another reason is that the so-called Multi-annual Financial Framework, which was due for action early next year, is moved to the summer, this affects all EU spending programmes. Furthermore, the UK has been a net contributor to the EU budget, averaging an annual payment of €7.6 billion over the past five years, this budget hole resulting after Brexit is another future challenge for FP9.
It is expected that more money will go to defence and security. Robert-Jan Smits, executive director-general for research and innovation, said that if defence was not on the table, research could have grown to 20% of the EU budget.
FP9 is most likely to cover the period 2021-2027, and its preparations have already begun in the European Commission. The development is still in an early stage and much will depend on the proposal for the next EU Multiannual Financial Framework.
On 3 July, a conference will be held to discuss the findings of the interim evaluation of Horizon 2020 and future orientations.
Further information, including national funding initiatives, can be found here.