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Materials Research in the Sixth Framework Programme

Jose-Lorenzo Vallés-Brau 

European Commission, Directorate-General for Research, Unit G3 "Materials", Brussels 1049, Belgium


In 2000 the European Commission launched the idea of creating a European Research Area (ERA), where the scientific capacity in the Member States can be put to best use, where national and European policies can be implemented more coherently, where researchers and knowledge can circulate more freely, and which is also attractive to the best researchers from Third Countries. This strategy was then adopted by the European Council in Lisbon, with the ultimate goal to enable the European Union to become the most competitive and dynamic knowledge economy. The 6th Framework Programme (2002-06) has therefore been designed to have a higher integrating, structuring and strengthening effect on European Research, and to support industrial innovation. The third of the seven Thematic Priorities is devoted to "Nanotechnologies and Nanosciences, knowledge-based multifunctional materials and new production processes and devices". This priority, and in particular its component related to Materials, clearly represents an area where it is very promising to realise the ERA, as there is a need for multidisciplinary and multisectoral efforts. Under the 6th Framework
Programme there is a wider range of instruments to implement the Thematic Priorities. The two new instruments called Networks of Excellence and Integrated Projects have a high level of management autonomy and are expected to have the capacity to mobilise the critical mass of expertise needed to achieve ambitious objectives, and to have strong structuring and integrating effects. After introducing the main features of the 6th Framework Programme, and in particular of its Thematic Priority 3, the results of the First and Second Calls for proposals, which had deadlines in Spring 2003 and in Spring 2004, are commented. Finally, some information is provided on the preparations for the Third Call, and in particular with regard to the research areas which are likely to be open.


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Presentation: invited oral at E-MRS Fall Meeting 2004, Plenary session, by Jose-Lorenzo Vallés-Brau
See On-line Journal of E-MRS Fall Meeting 2004

Submitted: 2004-07-08 12:46
Revised:   2009-06-08 12:55