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Horizon 2020 logoThe first call for proposals for Horizon2020, the new EU funding programme for research and innovation running from 2014 to 2020 with a €70 billion budget, was launched today. In her press conference Maire Geoghegan Quinn, Commissioner for Research, Innovation & Science, Directorate General Research, Innovation & Science directed anyone wishing to get involved in Horizon2020 to take advantage of the recently improved Research and Innovation Participant Portal. Included in the highlighted focus areas among the goals of Horizon 2020 is gender. The website states, "another important priority of the Commission is to ensure gender is embedded in the design of Horizon2020 project proposals". You can read more in today's memo here. At Portia we are very pleased to see this explicit policy focus given to gender.  The €80 billion spent on the previous Framework Programmes has made little difference for women.  It is inconceivable that by 2020 we shall still see only one in five professors being female.  The Commission has taken an important lead in recognising that addressing gender issues is about maximising talent, but also, and critically, it is about the quality of science and competitiveness that better utilisation of science knowledge can bring about.  It is vital that this criteria are fully realised in project proposals through evidenced based objectives. We are looking forward to helping applicants to Horizon2020 respond appropriately and beneficially to this important policy directive. Please contact us if you would like to discuss collaboration in the project you are planning, or some form of consultation to improve your work plan.

11 December 2013