UK to rejoin the EU’s Horizon Europe 

Peter O’Brien, Executive Director – Yorkshire Universities

Yorkshire Universities is delighted by the news that the UK and the European Commission reached agreement for the full participation of UK-based researchers and organisations in the Horizon Europe and Copernicus programmes.  

By being able to fully participate in Horizon Europe, the most ambitious Research and Innovation funding programme to date enables our universities to forge ever stronger partnerships with their European counterparts, nurturing cross-border collaborations and both leading and participating in more world-leading research. The UK will be able to join the governance of EU programmes – which the UK has been excluded from over the last three years – ensuring we can shape collaboration taking place next year. And UK researchers will be able to lead consortia in the next work programme of Horizon Europe projects. 

The UK’s participation in the Copernicus programme, the European Earth Observation programme, will provide the UK’s earth observation sector with access to unique data – valuable to helping with early flood and fire warnings, support critical research in environmental conservation and climate change mitigation for example – and with the ability to bid for contracts, which they haven’t been able to access for three years. 

Yorkshire, renowned for its vibrant academic ecosystem, stands to gain immensely from having full access to these partnerships. Commenting on the announcement, Executive Director of Yorkshire Universities, Dr Peter O’Brien, said:  

“This is excellent news for the UK and EU and a real boost for international research collaboration, which is increasingly vital if we are to address the major economic, social and environmental opportunities and challenges we face in the UK, across Europe and globally. It is also excellent news for universities, researchers and industry in Yorkshire, who are major contributors towards multi-national R&D and innovation that helps to create and sustain new jobs and attract investment into our region.” 

See UK press release: UK joins Horizon Europe under a new bespoke deal – GOV.UK ( 

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