EU organisation advocates cutting-edge research in Davos

Davos, Jan 20 (IANS) As the World Economic Forum kicked off on Wednesday in Davos, some European Union (EU) research organisations, officials and scholars expressed their will to advocate cutting-edge research at the forum.

European Commissioner for Research, Innovation and Science Carlos Moedas and European Research Council (ERC) president professor Jean-Pierre Bourguignon underlined Europe’s efforts to attract top scientists.

Moedas commented that it will be important to discuss the EU’s role in the fourth Industrial Revolution at Davos this week, Xinhua reported.

“One thing is for sure, there will be no revolution without supporting the kind of interdisciplinary, frontier research that will lead to innovation in European industry and manufacturing,” he said.

Set up in 2007 by the EU, the ERC is the first European funding organisation for excellent frontier research.

The ERC strives to attract top researchers across the world to come to Europe. To date, it has funded more than 5,500 top researchers at a variety of stages in their careers.

According to the ERC, Europe faces a serious challenge: How can it attract the brightest researchers from outside Europe and reverse brain drain?

Under the new EU research and innovation programme, Horizon 2020, the ERC has a budget of over 13 billion euros ($14 billion), the ERC allows first-class researchers to pursue their cutting-edge ideas in fields such as cancer therapy, climate change or nanotechnology.

The World Economic Forum (WEF), which has taken place annually since 1971, is one of the most recognized platforms for discussion of pressing global issues.

With the overarching goal to “improve the state of the world”, the forum gathers over 2,500 participants, bringing together political, business, scientific and civic society leaders from around the world.

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