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The UK and Switzerland sign a MoU on cooperation in research and innovation

On 10 November, The UK and Switzerland signed an agreement deepening the relationship between the two countries’ world-leading research and innovation communities. The agreement was signed by UK Minister of State for Science, Research and Innovation, George Freeman MP, alongside Federal Councillor Parmelin, Head of Switzerland’s Federal Department of Economic Affairs, Education and Research, at a ceremony in London.

The memorandum will encourage particular focus on cooperation in ‘deep science’ and ‘deep tech’, as well as commercialisation through innovation, and policy and diplomacy in science and innovation.

techUK welcomes this agreement. Ambitious commitments to bilateral and multilateral cooperation in innovation, research, commercialization of emerging technologies, and regulatory standards are vital for the UK to become one of the world’s science superpowers and tackle urgent global challenges like climate change, biosecurity and space sustainability.

Together the UK and Switzerland have 10 of Europe’s top 20 research Universities, and this agreement will deepen an ambitious bilateral relationship in areas of mutual interest across 3 key pillars: deep science, industrial commercialisation and international standards and regulation.

The memorandum outlines the principles of the relationship, and specific forms of cooperation, including:

  • coordinated or joint initiatives, programmes or projects
  • meetings, workshops, conferences or symposia
  • exchange of information and documentation
  • mobility, visits and delegations
  • strategy and coordination meetings
  • plans for Ministers to convene a regular annual Anglo Swiss Research Collaboration Council to oversee activities

Ambassador of Switzerland to the United Kingdom, Markus Leitner said:

“The signing of this MoU on research and innovation co-operation is a clear political signal by our governments to the scientific community and funding agencies that we want to invest in more joint Swiss-UK projects. The MoU provides a framework to further develop the already strong scientific partnership between Switzerland and the UK.”

“Switzerland and the UK are already both global leaders in scientific research and innovation and we welcome international collaboration in this field, because it extends our research capabilities.”


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