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MEI Online: General Minerals Engineering: Latest News: October 30th 2002

:: European Research Funding - Framework Programme 6 Launched  

Next month sees the launch of the sixth European Framework Pwgramme (FP6) with a budget of 17.5 billion Euros. The funding, which is available for research and development activities within Europe, allows organisations to undertake research that they would not have been able to participate in, whether for financial reasons or lack of research capabilities. Other benefits include the possible expansion into new markets and the development of new links throughout industrial and research sectors across Europe.

Under the auspices of FP6 are the integrated projects. These are designed to support objective-driven research, where the primary goal is new knowledge. This is achieved through integrating the critical mass of activities and resources together in order to achieve ambitious scientific and technological objectives that have a structuring effect on the fabric of European research.

Networks of Excellence is another part of FP6. It is aimed at advancing knowledge in a particular yea by assembling a critical mass of expertise. They will foster co-operation between areas of excellence in universities, research centres, companies, and science and technology organisations. The activities concerned will be generally targeted towards long-term, multi-disciplinary objectives, rather than predefined results in terms of products, processes or services.

A total of 2.1 billion Euros has been allocated to SMEs within the new framework, in particular to two SME-specific activities, co-operative research projects and collective research projects. The former enables groups of SMEs with similar technical problems and inadequate R&D means of their own to engage with third parties in order to carry out innovative research. The latter entails the expansion of the knowledge-base of large groups of SMEs that are being confronted with common challenges, which range from increased legislative requirements to enhanced competition from companies outside Europe.

Earlier this year the European Commission launched a call for expressions of interest to take part in FP6 programmes. These are now on display at www.cordis.lu/fp6/eoi-instruments and the Commission recommends viewing with a view to joining projects, developing projects or participating in projects.

For more information on integrated projects, European R&D l-unding and the opportunities available for all types and size of organisation, contact Tim Barraclough at Beta Technology, tel: +44 (0)302 322 633, e-mail: tim@betatechnology.co.uk



Click for more info on Flotation '19

Materials World, Oct.2002, p.4

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