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British Academy welcomes government commitment to EU research programmes

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The British Academy has welcomed the government’s pledge to continue to participate in EU research programmes after the UK leaves the EU.

In a position paper, published today by the Department for Exiting the European Union, the government laid out its proposals to participate into several EU science and research schemes, including Horizon 2020, the EU’s largest research and innovation programme.

The Government’s intent to agree an extensive and preferably enhanced research and innovation partnership with the EU will be important for the future success of UK science.

Commenting on the paper, the British Academy’s Foreign Secretary Professor Ash Amin FBA said:

“The priority placed by the Government on the future research relationship between the UK and the EU is important. The British Academy supports the UK’s continued full association with EU research programmes beyond 2020 and strongly recommends that the Government achieves this goal. The higher education and research sector is one of the UK’s greatest assets, fostering innovation, driving prosperity and bolstering our international influence. EU collaboration and the ability to work across borders will be essential if the UK is to maintain this success.

"Such an outcome will require further commitments for the higher education and research sector in a range of areas, in particular the ability for the UK to continue to be an attractive place for researchers and students in the EU and their families to live and work. In this context we are puzzled by the apparent inconsistency in this paper on science and the Government’s narrative on immigration. Researcher mobility with the EU is key to the UK’s success and international standing in the research community, and it is important that this freedom of movement is endorsed in the Government's policies on immigration.

"We look forward to working  with the government and our European partners to ensure that the UK remains open to talented researchers from the EU and around the world."

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