7th Research Framework Programme (FP7)

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The EU's Seventh framework programme for research and technological development (2007-2013) is designed as a key contribution to the EU's strategy for growth and jobs.

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Overview

Since 1984, research and innovation activities of the EU are grouped in one big programme called the Framework Programme (FP). Research framework programmes are the EU's main financial and legal instruments to implement the European Research Area (ERA). ERA is now high on the policy agenda and part of the strategy for meeting the goal of increasing investment to three per cent of the EU's total GDP by 2010 as laid out by the Barcelona Summit in March 2002. It is also a legal and political obligation stemming from the Amsterdam Treaty.

So far, framework programmes have been designed to last for a period of 4 years. They are drawn up and proposed by the Commission and have to be adopted by the Parliament and the Council. 

In view of preparing the EU's 7th Framework Programme, which will follow the current 6th FP (2002-2006), the Commission adopted, on 16 June 2004, its Communication 'Science and technology, the key to Europe's future - Guidelines for future European Union policy to support research', outlining the main priorities for FP7. 

An open stakeholder consultation on this communication was organised in autumn 2004
. The Council's views on the issue were in line with those of the Commission's and the Parliament voted on its position in March 2005.   

The Commission finally presented its official proposal for the FP7 on 6 April 2005. Following the proposal,
 consultations on research themes in the FP7 and   

on EU science and technology foresight in FP7
 were 

organised.

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