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Sweden is successfull in Horizon 2020

Published: 30 June 2021

Sweden is among the ten most successful countries in the European framework program for research and innovation, Horizon 2020. Annika Zika-Viktorsson is an analyst at Vinnova and tells more about the results in a new report on Sweden's participation in the program.

This web page has been machine translated. If there are any uncertainties, please refer to the Swedish text.

How has it gone for Sweden in the program?

It has gone well for Sweden, we are among the top ten countries when it comes to participation.

What does it mean that Sweden is a successful country?

There are a few different ways to assess success. One way is for us to take home a larger share of research funding than our share of the EU budget, which is the case today.
Another way of looking at it is how much of the applications are granted, where we are on the EU average. We can also measure how many applications are submitted per researcher, where we are also on the EU average and the same applies to the grant rate in relation to how many researchers we have in Sweden.

What conclusions can be drawn from the report?

An important conclusion is that we have a good participation, although of course it needs to be strengthened and improved. We can also see that there is a broad participation in the program, over 1000 Swedish organizations participate and all counties in the country are represented. The most extensive is the participation in the metropolitan regions and around the universities.

Now comes a new framework program, Horisont Europa - can you tell us a bit about it?

The program will be an important source of funding for Swedish research and innovation, but it is also an important opportunity for networks, strong knowledge environments and to work to meet societal challenges in a European context.

Major investments will be made in developing solutions for the green and digital transition. It wants to strengthen research in Europe, but also promote innovation capacity, job creation and competitiveness in the EU. Political priorities will be important as well as issues of democracy, values and socio-economic models.

The EU is also investing in missions. These are goal-oriented initiatives that are based not only on research and innovation, but also on other relevant measures, to meet societal challenges. The challenges may, for example, be about adapting to climate change, cancer and smart climate-neutral cities.

Vinnova, together with four other authorities on behalf of the government, has developed a strategy for Swedish participation in Horisont Europa. In that strategy, we highlight five important ambitions. In addition to research and innovation and to ensure sustainable development, ambition increases are proposed in terms of sharing resources and data, building strong environments and increasing the influence over the program.

If a Swedish player wants to participate in an EU programme, what is important to think about?

Having a strategy for your participation is very important. Those who have a successful participation today have worked with their strategies both in the short and long term.

Many people find it cumbersome and bureaucratic, but there is support and help to get, for example, through Grants Office at universities and EU-SME support for small and medium-sized companies. At Vinnova, there are national contact persons who you are welcome to contact. It is good to be humble in the face of complexity and intricacies, but it is not invincible.

Last updated 30 June 2021

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