Royal Society calls for swift association to Horizon Europe in response to Northern Ireland protocol

27 February 2023

Sir Adrian Smith, President of the Royal Society, said, “With the Northern Ireland protocol impasse resolved, we need to swiftly secure access to the EU’s international research programmes.

“We welcome Ursula von der Leyen’s commitment to progressing association as soon as the Windsor Framework is implemented.

“It is more than two years since the Government agreed association to Horizon Europe, Euratom and Copernicus – two years of delays that have damaged science across Europe. These schemes support outstanding international collaboration, and the sooner we join them, the better for everyone.

“The Government has stated that the UK is more committed than ever to strong research collaboration with our European partners. In light of the recent return to the Treasury of a £1.6 billion underspend that was intended for association to Horizon Europe, it is reassuring that Treasury sources are now reported as saying that the money will be spent in subsequent financial years.”