Horizon Europe Guarantee fund awards £1bn in grants

The Horizon Europe Guarantee fund has reached an important milestone with more than £1 billion now awarded to UK-based researchers and innovators.

The funding is enabling them to participate in Horizon Europe projects while the UK’s association to the flagship EU funding programme is delayed.

Also today the government has set out its prospectus for a programme to protect and support the UK research and innovation sector, should it be required.

The guarantee fund is delivered by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). It supports researchers and innovators who have been successful in Horizon Europe competitions but cannot receive EU funding due to the delays to the UK’s association to the programme. With guarantee funding they can continue their important work in research and innovation.

Guarantee scheme recipients

Recipients include:

  • UK wind propulsion company Anemoi, which is part of Optiwise, a Horizon Europe project that aims to reduce energy use in commercial shipping. Its nine consortium partners are based in France, Sweden, the Netherlands and other countries
  • David Armstrong, a researcher at the University of Warwick, received a guarantee grant to replace the ERC Starting Grant that he won but was unable to receive due to the delay to association. He is now working with the universities of Geneva, Bern and Porto to understand more about planets outside our own solar system
  • The University of Manchester is taking part in a Horizon Europe project with partners from countries including Spain, Austria and Belgium. Called NimbleAI, the project is developing a computer chip that works like an organic brain to see its physical surroundings
  • Rolls-Royce is taking part in six projects with numerous international partners as part of Horizon Europe’s Clean Aviation Joint Undertaking
  • Tevva, the UK-based manufacturer of electric vehicles, is part of a Horizon Europe project that will help decarbonise transportation. The NextETruck project brings together universities, research technology organisations and manufacturers from several European countries, including Austria, Spain and Belgium

UKRI is delivering the guarantee on behalf of the Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT).

An important milestone

Professor Christopher Smith, UKRI International Champion, said:

This is an important milestone for UKRI and the UK. The guarantee mitigates the challenges faced by our research and innovation communities during the delay to association by ensuring UK expertise is still able to participate.

As a result, thousands of projects tackling vital research are going ahead and researchers and businesses in other countries are continuing to build Horizon Europe consortia with UK-based partners.

We welcome the Secretary of State’s discussions in Brussels seeking a way forward on association to Horizon Europe. However as the key delivery partner for the alternatives set out in the prospectus published today by the government, UKRI will continue to work closely with the government and the sector to ensure that, if required, we are ready to implement alternatives.

In the meantime I encourage researchers and innovators across the UK to continue applying to open Horizon Europe calls. The Guarantee will support them if they cannot receive the EU grant they have been awarded.

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