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UK students may lose access to Erasmus after Brexit

25 July 2016. The Erasmus scheme’s UK director, Ruth Sinclair-Jones, said  “we face a sad moment of uncertainty, after 30 years of this enrichment of so many lives”. Sinclair-Jones said that those now in the scheme or applying for next year should be unaffected but “in the long term, it’s an unknown situation. We will continue with our plans until 2017 but after that we have to wait”.

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The Guardian. Erasmus scheme may exclude British students after Brexit

Horizon 2020: €8.5 billion in research and innovation in 2017

25 July 2016. The European Commission announced an investment of €8.5 billion to be released during 2017 into research and innovation, following an update to the Work Programme of Horizon 2020, the EU's research and innovation funding programme. 

The updated Work Programme  builds on the success of Horizon 2020 to date, but introduces important novelties. A particularly important change is the introduction of open research data  in all new Horizon 2020 calls and the strong commitment to research integrity and simplification as a driver for research quality.

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Horizon 2020 website

The innovation performance of the EU countries

14 July 2016.  The European Commission released the 2016 results of the European Innovation Scoreboard,  the Regional Innovation Scoreboard and the Innobarometer.

The main findings are that EU innovation is catching up with Japan and the US, Sweden is once again the innovation leader, and Latvia has become the fastest growing innovator. 

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The reform of the Common European Asylum System

13 July 2016. The European Commission is presenting proposals to complete the reform of the Common European Asylum System in order to move towards a fully efficient, fair and humane asylum policy – one which can function effectively both in times of normal and in times of high migratory pressure.

The Commission is therefore proposing the creation of a common procedure for international protection, uniform standards for protection and rights granted to beneficiaries of international protection and the further harmonisation of reception conditions in the EU. Overall, these proposals will simplify and shorten the asylum procedure and the decision-making, discourage secondary movements of asylum seekers and increase integration prospects of those that are entitled to international protection. 

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Asylum procedures: reforming the Common European Asylum System

Communication: Towards a Reform of the Common European Asylum System and Enhancing Legal Avenues to Europe

Two new financial instruments to boost investments

11 July 2016. The European Commission adopted two new "off-the-shelf", i.e. "ready-to-use" financial instruments for ESI Funds investments, to ease access to funding for young businesses and urban development project promoters.

co-investment facility to provide funding to start-ups and SMEs. This support will enable them to develop their business models and attract additional funding through a collective investment scheme managed by one main financial intermediary. Total investment combining public and private resources can amount to up to €15 million per SME. 

A Urban development funds to support sustainable urban projects, in public transport, energy efficiency or the regeneration of urban areas, for example. Projects must be financially viable and part of an  Integrated Sustainable Urban Development strategy. Total investment combining public and private resources can amount to up to €20 million per project. 

More infos:

DG REGIO's website