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: Graphene Week 2015 has been

announced as a “homecoming” for the

nanomaterial by the head of the EU

FET Flagship.

Professor Jari Kinaret, director of the Graphene Flagship, made the

statement during the opening plenary of the five-day conference taking

place at the University of Manchester, UK, which was attended by

Horizon 2020 Projects. The event showcased the breakthroughs of the

Graphene Flagship, part-funded by the European Commission, and

related nanotechnologies.

Also in the opening plenary, Thomas Skordas, head of the Flagships Unit,

DG CONNECT in the European Commission, emphasised the importance

of “basic science and industry”, moving from “lab to fab” and industrial

leadership. Skordas also focused on the

international collaborative nature of

graphene research.

Adding his thoughts during the first session,

Professor Vladimir Fal’ko, programme

committee member of Graphene Week

2015 and researcher at Lancaster University, UK, drew attention to

the importance of collaboration, particularly between science,

technology and 2D materials. He also spoke about the importance of

the National Graphene Institute, which is located at the University of

Manchester and was opened by UK Finance Minister George Osborne

in March.

This week’s conference is the tenth edition of the event, and the first to be

fully organised by the Graphene Flagship. The opening plenary also saw

addresses by Harvard University’s Philip Kim, Shu-Jen Han from IBM, and

Rodney S Ruoff from Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology,

South Korea.

22 June 2015




RUSSELS: The European Research Council

is celebrating the funding of its 5,000th


The milestone ERC grant is being awarded to Croatian cell biophysicist Dr

Iva Tolic´. The Consolidator Grant will allow her to study the forces acting

on the chromosomes during cell division; her research could be critical for

the development of new therapies against cancer. Tolic´will carry out her

project at the Rud¯er Boškovic´ Institute in the Croatian capital Zagreb.

After receiving the news, the grantee commented: “This ERC grant will

make a big difference to me professionally. It will allow me to establish

my new lab in Croatia, hire six team members and buy a state-of-the-

art microscope. For the next five years, I will be able to focus purely on

my research.”

In order to mark the occasion, the

ERC will take part in an exchange

of views with the Committee on

Industry, Research and Energy in

Brussels, where the organisation’s

president, Professor Jean-Pierre

Bourguignon, will address MEPs.

ITRE Committee chair Jerzy Buzek said that the group of parliamentarians

had “worked very hard to secure the money earmarked for researchers, both

via the ERC and other parts of Horizon 2020” and stated that the “EU’s future

depends on researchers” such as Tolic´.

A grant signing ceremony will also take place with high-level speakers and

other ERC grantees. Commenting, Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner

for Research, Science and Innovation, described the ERC as “an

organisation open to top talent from around the world, regardless of

nationality, gender and age”.

16 June 2015

© Duncan Hull

© PublicDomainPictures

is the central news hub for the EU’s research and innovation

framework programme. The website is a valuable information resource for researchers

and policy makers with its coverage of major European announcements, scientific

breakthroughs and in-depth reporting of the Horizon 2020 objectives.

With the expectation of a reduced budget following the creation of the European Fund

for Strategic Investments, legislators agreed to safeguard the funding for the European

Research Council, which in June also celebrated the awarding of its 5,000th grant.

Meanwhile, the Hungarian capital Budapest hosted INNOVEIT 2015, a major conference

focusing on the work of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology, whilst

Manchester, UK, hosted Graphene Week 2015, celebrating the latest developments in

nanomaterials. The European Commission have also announced a new scientific guidance

tool after the mandate of the chief scientific advisor ended under the Barroso II Commission.



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