The international collaborations of Formas are undertaken primarily at European level. EU collaborations are prioritised by the Swedish Government contributing specific funding to the European programmes. Collaborations are carried out partly through the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (Horizon 2020) and partly as collaborations between EU Member States and associated countries.
Horizon 2020 is the EU Framework Program for Research and Innovation and is targeted towards many different stakeholders, such as research scientists, commerce, the public sector and other interest groups. The programme is subdivided into three main funding areas:
- Excellent Science – this subdivision of the programme is intended to strengthen the status of the EU within research and innovation. This includes European Research Council (ERC) funding initiatives, the Marie Sklodowska-Curie mobility programme, collaborative research within new and promising research areas and research infrastructure.
- Industrial leadership – this subdivision of the programme is intended to make Europe more attractive for investment in research and innovation, create jobs and growth and to attract private and strategic investment in research and innovation. This is achieved by funding areas such as nanotechnology, materials and biotechnology.
- Societal challenges – this subdivision of the programme focusses on the major societal challenges facing the EU and the rest of the world. This is achieved by funding areas such as interdisciplinary research and innovation collaborations.
The societal challenges that have been identified are:
- Health, demographic change and wellbeing
- Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine, maritime and inland water research, and the bioeconomy
- Secure, clean and efficient energy
- Smart, green and integrated transport
- Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials
- Europe in a changing world - inclusive, innovative and reflective societies
- Secure societies - protecting freedom and security of Europe and its citizens
Formas i Horisont 2020
Formas is Sweden's expert agency for two of the societal challenges and works at a strategic level to structure funding initiatives and prioritise within the respective challenges. To be able to contribute the most important Swedish perspectives, Formas has established two reference panels comprised of research scientists, representatives from commerce and the public sector, as well as other stakeholders.
The members of the two reference panels are listed below.
National Reference Panel for Societal challenge 2
Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine, maritime and inland water research, and the bioeconomy
- Caroline Löfgren, Johanneberg Science Park
- Daniel Hellström, The Swedish Water & Wastewater Association
- Elisabet Rytter, The Swedish Food Federation (Li)
- Jenny Goodwin, RISE
- Karin Emilsson, EmiInnovation
- Karl Jäghagen, Grants Office, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU)
- Kennert Johansson, RISE
- Kristina Anderback, AgroVäst
- Kjell Ivarsson, Federation of Swedish Farmers (LRF)
- Lars Wilhelmsson, Skogforsk
- Malin Werner, SLU
- Mia Dahlström, RISE
- Per Wallgren, National Veterinary Institute (SVA)
- Pia Norling, Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management (SwAM)
- Ulf Emanuelson, SLU
- Ulf Sonesson, RISE
National Reference Panel for Societal challenge 5
Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials
- Anna Hultin Stigenberg, Sandvik
- Boel Wadman, Swerea IVF
- Christer Forsgren, Stena Metall
- Christina Fredengren, Riksantikvarieämbetet (RAÄ)
- Daniel Hellström, The Swedish Water & Wastewater Association
- David Bendz, Swedish Geotechnical Institute (SGI)
- Emma Sernland, SwAM
- Henrik Carlsen, Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI)
- John Munthe, IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute
- Lars-Erik Lindell, Grants Office, SLU
- Lena Smuk, SP
- Per Persson, Swedish Research Council
- Pär Weihed, Luleå University of Technology
- Rachel Pettersson, Jernkontoret - The Swedish Steel Producers' Association
- Ralf Doescher, Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute (SMHI)
- Sabine Meyer, Bergforsk
The Research Partner Programme is a collective name for research programmes that are jointly funded by the EU Commission and national funding agencies such as Formas. The purpose is to fund research projects where researchers from several different countries participate. There are often requirements for the research to be communicated to users and to be of benefit to society.
ERA-Net is used to increase cooperation between national funding agencies and their research programmes. The EU Commission contributes with funding for coordination and research.
Formas participates in the following ERA-Net and ERA-Net Cofund initiatives:
- C-IPM (Integrated pest management)
- Marine Biotechnology
- Monitoring and mitigation of greenhouse gases
- Sustainable Animal Production
- Smart Urban Futures
- Waterworks 2015
- Climate Services
- Intestinal microbiome
- Sustainable urbanisation
- CORE Organic
The Article 185 Programme is a long-term research programme that receives half of its funding from the EU Commission and half from the EU Member States. Formas participates in one Article 185 Programme – BONUS – Science for a better future of the Baltic Sea region, which examines the unique and sensitive Baltic Sea ecosystem and the development potential in the region.
Joint Programming or collaborative programme planning is a long-term process focussed om major societal challenges that no country alone can resolve (such as climate change, sustainable food production and long-term availability of water). The objective is to enable countries to work together to reach agreement on a common research agenda and to work jointly to resolve the challenges. For example, the ERA-Net instrument can be used to fund joint research projects. Formas participates in seven Joint Programming initiatives:
- JPI Climate (Connecting climate knowledge for Europe), where Formas is a member of the steering group, together with the Swedish Research Council
- JPI FACCE (Agriculture, food security and climate change), where Formas is a member of of the steering group, together with the Swedish Ministry of Enterprise, Energy and Communications
- JPI HDHL (Healthy diet for a healthy life), where Formas is a member of the steering group
- JPI Oceans (Healthy and productive seas and oceans), where Formas is a member of the steering group, together with the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management
- JPI Water (Water challenges for a changing world), where Formas is a member of the steering group, together with the Swedish Agency for Marine and Water Management
- JPI AMR (Antimicrobial resistance), where the Swedish Research Council is part of the steering group and Formas participates in calls for proposals and strategy work
- JPI Urban Europe (Global urban challenges, joint European solutions), where Vinnova is a member of the steering group and Formas participates in calls for proposals and strategy work.
Science Europe is an organisation based in Brussels that consists of European research funders and researchers. The mandate of Science Europe is to monitor and drive research policy issues that are important for EU Member States. Among other things, Science Europe has an impact on the structuring of the EU Framework Programme and makes recommendations on issues concerning research ethics, equality and open access to data and publications. In addition to Formas, the Swedish Research Council and Forte are also members of Science Europe.