The first Joint Committee meeting on Research and Innovation (R&I), following Ukraine's association to the Horizon Europe and Euratom programmes, took place today in Brussels. Signe Ratso, Acting Director General for DG Research and Innovation, and Andrii Vitrenko, Ukraine's First Deputy Minister of Education and Science co-chaired the meeting.
The parties acknowledged the damages inflicted by Russia’s ongoing aggression with at least 15% of the research infrastructure affected, including unique scientific equipment and research labs. They underlined their joint commitment to continue nurturing Ukraine’s research capacity, intellectual assets and innovative capabilities, both inside and outside the country. The key instrument for this is Ukraine’s association to Horizon Europe and Euratom Research and Training programmes. Ukraine does not have to contribute financially for 2021 and 2022 and all the programmes’ applicants are encouraged to create opportunities for researchers and innovators from Ukraine.
The parties agreed to maximize on available cooperation opportunities including under dedicated support measures such as such as ERA4Ukraine and ERC4Ukraine, the €25 million MSCA4Ukraine fellowships scheme, €20 million EIC4Ukraine initiative as well as dedicated initiatives by the Joint Research Centre (JRC), the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) and the COST Office.
In the same vein, the parties will strengthen joint awareness-raising activities and investigate targeted assistance aimed at expanding Ukrainian entities' R&I networks as well as improving their capacity to draft competitive proposals. For instance, a Horizon Europe Office in Ukraine will be established and assistance through the Eastern Partnership R&I cooperation is being looked into.
Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth said:
Ukraine’s resilience is a source of inspiration. It is encouraging to see the country’s participation in Horizon Europe and Euratom calls being close to pre-war levels and deploying multiple innovative solutions to alleviate the impacts of war. In view of dedicated support measures, I am convinced that we can take our R&I cooperation to a new level, which will contribute to rebuilding a modern Ukraine.
Andrii Vitrenko, Ukraine's First Deputy Minister of Education and Science said:
The war demonstrated Ukraine's R&I ecosystem's strength and durability. Although our research infrastructure has been affected, we’ve deployed, thanks to R&I, thousands of creative solutions that have allowed Ukraine to survive blatant attacks on critical infrastructures, the energy sector and the natural environment. Today, we explored with the European Commission how we can work together even stronger to support the Ukrainian research community, with an emphasis on assisting those who remain in Ukraine and strive to help it recover.
Moreover, given Ukraine's status as an EU candidate country, both parties agreed to facilitate greater policy alignment as well as Ukraine's faster integration into the European Research Area, with a focus on specific common priorities such as open science and effective national research systems, as well as Ukraine's participation in the New European Innovation Agenda.
Finally, given the expected worldwide efforts for Ukraine's post-war recovery, the parties agreed to coordinate efforts in support of R&I and its special contribution to the reconstruction of a modern Ukraine. This includes exploring capacity-building support in research infrastructure, climate neutral cities and nuclear safety and security. The key objective is to develop an R&I ecosystem in Ukraine that mitigates brain drain risks and fosters a knowledge society, innovative solutions, and advanced technologies.
The agreement associating Ukraine to Horizon Europe and the Euratom Research and Training programmes has entered into force on 9 June 2022, following its ratification by Ukraine. Ukrainian researchers and innovators can fully participate in both programmes, under the same conditions as entities from EU Members States.
Relations between the EU and Ukraine in the field of research and innovation date back to 2002 when a first Agreement on cooperation in Science and Technology between the European Community and Ukraine was signed.
- Publication date
- 18 November 2022
- Directorate-General for Research and Innovation