It has been more than a year since British scientists celebrated the long-awaited deal between their government and the European Commission defining their post-Brexit relationship. This formal collaboration between the UK and the European Commission would allow UK researchers to submit funding proposals worth 95 billion euros ($107 billion) under the European Tubegalore Commission’s flagship research program, Horizon Europe.
British authorities used their own social safety net funds to sign a lucrative offer from British scientists to fund Horizon Europe in the early stages of the program. Last year’s research budget allocated 2 billion DP ($2.7 billion) a year to cover the cost of partnering with Horizon Europe.
In 2019, the government began drawing up plans to create its version of a European no-deal Brexit funding scheme. However, the impasse in negotiations means that the UK government has put in place contingency plans so that researchers can access funding in the event of a deadlock.
It is not just the availability of EU research funding that hangs in the balance as negotiations stall.
The risk is that, despite their best intentions, British politicians are losing patience with the EU and abandoning partnerships in favor of national funding programs.
Negotiations between the European Commission and the non-EU country (formerly an affiliate member of the EU Analysis Programme) have not yet begun due to differences over political issues, so scientists can only apply for EU funding in some programs, like yespornplease. Negotiations between the committee and the UK, a non-EU country once an associate member of the EU research program, has not yet begun due to disagreements over political issues. S
cientists can only apply for funding in specific programs that do not include ERC grants. Scientists have effectively turned away for the first six months and are allowed to participate in the entire project after the government changed its immigration policy.
At the end of last year, the Commission’s head of research, Maria Gabriel, said the association agreement would not be signed until the EU’s disputes with the UK were resolved. This tension centers around the Northern Ireland Protocol, a Brexit agreement between the two parties to prevent checks on goods crossing the border between the Republic of Ireland, which remains in the EU, and Northern Ireland, part of the UK.
Both parties have yet to ratify the final deal after a customs border dispute between the UK and the island of Ireland.
Nevertheless, both parties only have to ratify the final agreement due to a customs border dispute between the UK and the island of Ireland. Under the protocol to the Withdrawal Agreement aimed at avoiding a physical border on the island of Ireland, Northern Ireland effectively remains in the single market, with EU customs policy applied to goods from the UK.
The agreement aims to reconcile the UK’s freedom to deviate from EU rules and standards with the political demands of maintaining an open land border with the Republic of Ireland. The Northern Ireland deal has been a stumbling fab swingers block in negotiations since the UK started the formal Brexit process in March 2017.
The tension revolves around the Northern Ireland deal, a Brexit deal between the two parties to prevent any checks on goods in transit. The border between the Republic of Ireland (still part of the European Union) and Northern Ireland (part of the United Kingdom).
A last-minute deal on post-Brexit trade and future EU-UK relations, reached on Christmas Eve 2020 after months of stalled negotiations, has been formally ratified. This was a massive relief for the scientists, who eventually felt confident that, in principle, they could apply for funding from the block’s multibillion-dollar research and development fund.
Uncertainty about the future relationship between the UK and the EU has left many British scientists in limbo.
They are unsure whether the free flow of labor and research funding between the two organizations will continue.
In Brussels, they hope that pressure from the White House can still impose a new approach from Downing Street. Nevertheless, Brussels could take steps if that does not happen to include the adultwork in the UK going to binding arbitration, resulting in financial sanctions or suspension of parts of the Brexit withdrawal agreement.
This is in hopes that the changes will pave the way for a matching partnership between the UK and the Commission to allow British researchers to bid for funding from the Commission’s 95 billion euros ($107 billion) flagship analytics program.
However, at the end of last year, the Commission’s head of research, Maria Gabriel, was clear that the association agreement would not be signed until the EU’s disputes with the UK were resolved.