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Frontpage News 2012 Opportunities for Estonian-Norwegian research cooperation

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Opportunities for Estonian-Norwegian research cooperation

An Estonian-Norwegian matchmaking event for the bilateral research programme took place on 21 September in Tallinn. The event attracted about 130 researchers and representatives from leading Estonian and Norwegian research institutions, laying the ground for new partnerships.

Anticipating the launch of the €3 million Estonian-Norwegian research programme, the Estonian Research Council recently organised a major matchmaking event. Representatives of the largest Estonian universities and research institutions participated, in addition to about 30 Norwegian universities and institutions,

Ambassador of Norway, Lise Kleven Grevstad, opened the event by emphasising the importance of research and development. Dr. Aleksandra Witczak Haugstad from the Research Council of Norway elaborated on the opportunities for bilateral partnership projects.

The Head of the Estonian Research Council, Andres Koppel, emphasised the importance of the Norwegian research funding at a time when this is being cut across Europe as part of budget austerity measures.

The scholarship programme, which is closely related to the research programme, was presented by the Estonian Ministry of Education and Research. The scholarship programme involves student and staff exchanges with Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

Building on successful partnerships

Many partnerships were formed in the previous funding period of the EEA and Norway Grants. In 2009, the transfer of knowledge block grant was concluded with 10 projects, nine of them having a partner from Norway, and two an Icelandic partner. The projects ranged from medical research and ethics to satellite remote sensing and wave physics.

Several of the successful project partners are now looking forward to new cooperation opportunities.The funding available has been increased from €450 000 in the previous transfer of knowledge block grant to a total of €4.6 million for research cooperation and scholarships in the current period.