Opening to the World: the EU-USA Co-operation
Nanotechnology research is covered by the EU-USA Agreement on Scientific and Technological Co-operation and, in particular, by the Implementing Arrangement between the European Commission and the National Science Foundation (USA) for co-operative activities in the field of materials science. In the extension of the EU-USA Agreement to another five years, signed on 13th October 2004, nanotechnology was for the first time mentioned explicitely. Following the renewal of the Agreement, the Implementing Arrangement is automatically extended, too.
The following forms of co-operative activities are envisaged in the Arrangement:
- comparable opportunities for entities from the European Community and from the United States of America to participate in the other side's programmes;
- extensive exchange of information;
- reinforced co-operation;
- joint organisation of scientific seminars, conferences, symposia, workshops;
- co-ordinated calls for proposals;
- support for the training of scientists, engineers, and technical experts.
This Arrangement was signed in December 1999. In less than two years, a very interesting co-operation has been initiated. The EC programme "Competitive and Sustainable Growth" of FP5 organised three co-ordinated calls for proposals with NSF, including mainly research but also education activities. The NMP priority of FP6 organised one co-ordinated call for proposals with the NSF in the field of computational materials research.
The Arrangement does not foresee any trans-atlantic funding. For the projects selected under this scheme, the European researchers receive EC funds and the USA researchers received NSF funds. Proposals are submitted to the European Commission and the National Science Foundation according to the respective rules for participation (EU - US cooperation in Materials Sciences). A separate, but co-ordinated evaluation is carried out.
Between 2000 and 2004, six Joint EC - NSF Workshops were organised. At the Workshops, top-level European and American scientists discussed the results, challenges and priorities in several fields of research into nanotechnology, e.g. computational materials, nanoscale materials, tools and instruments, or societal implications. The conclusions and proceedings of the joint EC-NSF workshops are available on the publications page.
The European Union in the US
ERA link: A Network for European researchers in the US
R&D; Policy in the United States: The Promotion of Nanotechnology R&D;
This Policy Mix project is a research project coordinated by UNU-MERIT and the United Nations University and funded by the European Commission. It has been conducted for DG Research, to serve as support for policy developments in Europe.
Nanotechnology at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
National Science Foundation
National Nanotechnology Initiative