As part of discussions with partners in the Confederation of European Business (BusinessEurope), the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) has called for the strong links between the UK and EU science and research communities to remain in place after Brexit.
The CBI is working with its members to assess the options open to the UK for continuing to engage with EU-funded science projects such as Horizon 2020.
CBI members highlighted the need for the UK to retain access and influence to both current science programmes and also Framework Programme 9 (FP9) which is scheduled for 2021.
Members cited the UK’s role in both maintaining scientific excellence as a specific project criteria and in the development of regulations and the harmonisation of data standards based on much of the research work generated.
Post-Brexit, members stressed the importance of the UK having a say in the early stages of international regulatory development.
Another key area of concern raised by the CBI was the status of EU-based researchers and students. They described how members valued their work in universities and businesses. Coming to an agreement to ensure the UK could continue to attract a highly skilled workforce was also a vital issue when competing for talent outside of the EU.
To date, the government has committed to underwrite UK-based participants who receive EU funding from projects such as Horizon 2020 or the European Regional Development Funding (ERDF) programme.
As part of the CBI’s consultation with members, BusinessEurope will draft a series of policy proposals that will look in more detail at how the UK can maintain access and links to the EU science base and its programmes.