UCL News


NEST Conference - Creating New Opportunities through European Research

7 September 2005

A milestone NEST Conference - New and Emerging Science and Technology: Creating New Opportunities through European Research, will take place at the DTI Conference Centre, 1 Victoria Street, London SW1, on 20 and 21 September 2005.

Organised jointly by UCL and the European Commission, the conference will provide a forum for debate on how best to develop a fruitful interdisciplinary research environment throughout the European Union. The views and experience shared at the conference will help to shape FP7, the European Community framework for research in science and technology that comes into force in 2007 and will run for six years.

NEST was set up as part of FP6, the current EU Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration, which covers a very wide range of actions to fund and promote not only trans-European but also international research for the period 2002-2006.

The NEST programme under FP6 specifically set out to improve the climate for opportunity seeking within the EU research environment. Building on earlier activities, it successfully developed an investigator-driven approach to research funding that both encourages risktaking and promotes interdisciplinary approaches.

The NEST conference will look at how the upcoming FP7 can best support European research of this type in the future.

The conference is opened by UK Research Minister Lord Sainsbury, and the President & Provost of UCL, Prof. Malcolm Grant, with the key note speakers being headed up by the European Commissioner for Research, Janez Potocnik. The NEST conference will incorporate a series of themed sessions, focusing on the benefits of interdisciplinarity and creativity in research.

International key figures from scientific research, industry and government will debate such topics as 'Can we have adventurous science with social responsibility?' and 'Stimulating creativity and risk-taking for new science'.

Dr Ilse Vickers, UCL's Director Research Europe and the NEST Conference Director, commented: "By considering the NEST programme and other activities with similar objectives, the conference will provide a forum to discuss how programmes of this type can best promote a capacity for creative opportunity-seeking in European research."

Link: NEST conference