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Collaboration opportunities

 

Horizon 2020: New Opportunities for EU-China Collaboration

Horizon 2020, the EU's current framework programme for research and innovation runs from 2014 to 2020 with a budget of nearly EUR 80 billion. Horizon 2020 is fully open to international cooperation. The biggest EU research and innovation programme ever, Horizon 2020 is based on 3 pillars: Excellent Science, Industrial Leadership and Societal Challenges.

Discover what’s in it for China by going through the following documents prepared for you by the EU Delegation to China:

China and Europe have a solid ground for cooperation in the area of Science & Technology through the signing of a cooperation agreement in 1998 which pledged to develop and facilitate cooperation in scientific research and development and created a steering committee to manage the implementation of this agreement. This steering committee meets on a yearly basis and has as main tasks to promote cooperative activities, indicate priority sectors of mutual interests and advise on ways to improve cooperation.

Since the signing of the 1998 agreement and its renewal in 2004, a major effect of which being the opening of the European research funding programme (called 'FP7' for the 2007-2013 period, 'Horizon 2020' for the upcoming 2014-2020 period) to Chinese participants, the 2006 Joint Declaration on EU-China Science and Technology Cooperation has emphasized the importance of:

  1. Focusing on strategic projects in specific research areas;
  2. Strengthening the mobility of researchers;
  3. Putting in place practical measures to allow participation in each other’s research activities.

The establishment in 2009 of the Science and Technology Partnership Scheme between the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology and the European Commission (CESTYS) intends to practically address the launching of joint strategic projects by planning coordinated calls on topics of mutual interest. Coordinated calls can also be launched with Chinese partner institutions other than the Ministry of Science and Technology, such as other ministries, CAS, NSFC etc.

With the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC), the European Commission Directorate General for Research signed on 26 March 2010 a separate "administrative arrangement on joint projects" allowing both sides to launch joint projects in fields of common interest.

Co-Funding Mechanism for China

On 16 December 2015 the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology has launched its first call for proposals under the EU China Co-funding Mechanism (CFM) for Research and Innovation. Up to 200 million RMB, or 28 million euro, will be made available annually by the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) on the Chinese side for the benefit of China-based entities that will participate in joint projects with European partners under Horizon 2020. The deadlines of the first MOST call under the CFM are:

  • 31 March 2016 for the Chinese participants in the Horizon 2020 projects selected under Work Programme 2014/15
  • 31 July 2017 for the Chinese participants in Horizon 2020 proposals under Work Programme 2016

The CFM will pave the way for deepened cooperation between European and Chinese research and innovation stakeholders. It will also be open to a variety of thematic areas such as food, agriculture, biotechnology, information and communication technology, space, aviation, energy, health, transportation, water resources, energy conservation, advanced manufacturing, new materials, sustainable urbanization, young scientists exchange activities.

Opportunities for Hong Kong and Macao S.A.R.

A similar mechanism, the "EC-RGC Collaboration Scheme 2016/17", has been launched by the Research Grants Council of Hong Kong (RGC). RGC allocates an annual budget of HK$ 9 million for the benefit of Hong Kong researchers that will participate in joint projects with EU partners under Horizon 2020. The application deadline of the first Call for Proposals of the scheme is 04 July 2016 offering funding for participation in projects of the work programme 2016/2017.

Researchers in Macao can benefit from the newly launched "EU-Macao Collaboration Scheme for Research and Innovation" of the Macao Science and Technology Development Fund (FDCT). FDCT With maximum amount of funding per project at $5 million patacas and maximum funding limit per year at $1 million patacas, FDCT provides financial support to Macao partners in selected Horizon 2020 projects under all themes.

 

ERC-NSFC Collaboration

The European Commission and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (NSFC) signed an Implementing Arrangement in June 2015 that will foster cooperation between the European Research Council (ERC) and NSFC. In order to promote scientific cooperation among top level researchers, this implementing arrangement will give the opportunity to young Chinese researchers who are active holders of NSFC grants to establish and pursue research collaboration with Europe-based scientists already supported by the European Research Council (ERC). The first Call for Expression of Interest for NSFC grantees has been launched in January 2016.

 

Researchers' Mobility

Short- and long-term mobility of researchers both ways is an important driver of the EU China research and innovation partnership. The Excellent Science Pillar of Horizon 2020 offers dedicated programmes like Marie Sklodowska-Curie Actions and The European Research Council (ERC) to support the best research talents irrespective of their nationality with fellowships and grants.

DG Education and Culture and the Chinese Ministry of Education (MoE) are responsible for the High level People-to-People Dialogue (HPPD) which was established with a Joint Declaration in April 2012 and constitutes the Third Pillar of the EU China relations. It covers education, culture, youth, multilingualism and also mobility of researchers. Mobility of students, faculty and researchers is also supported through the new Programme Erasmus+.

European Union Member States have developed many cooperation programs with China in the fields of research and innovation, facilitating collaborative projects between European and Chinese research laboratories, increasing researchers' mobility and promoting scientific exchanges between Europe and China. To review the range of grants and funding opportunities that are available, please check our Funding section (http://euraxess.intrasoft-intl.com/funding/search/).

 

External-aid funds

Several projects initiated under the external-aid funds of the European Union may also target the promotion of S&T cooperation between Europe and China:

  • The China-EU Institute for Clean and Renewable Energy (ICARE) aims at educating post-graduate students in the field of clean and renewable energy and at training professionals. ICARE is established at Huazhong University of Science and Technology in Wuhan (central China) and provides a Master Degree in renewable energy taught by leading European academic institutions. In addition, ICARE hosts an international research platform.

Learn more: www.ceicare.edu.cn/en/ 

  • The EU-China Clean Energy Center (EC2) was launched in April 2010. It is an autonomous body co-financed by the Chinese government and the European Commission to promote the use of cleaner energy technologies in the following areas: clean coal, sustainable biofuel, renewable energy sources, energy efficiency in energy consumption and sustainable and efficient distribution systems. For more information on the Clean Energy Centre and the EC2 project you can

Learn more: http://www.ec2.org.cn/

Finally, European Union Member States have developed many cooperation programs with China in the fields of research and innovation, facilitating collaborative projects between European and Chinese research laboratories, increasing researchers' mobility and promoting scientific exchanges between Europe and China. To review the range of grants and funding opportunities that are available, please check our Funding section.

Many European countries have also launched joint labs and research centers with China.