Universities fear for research after EU deal breakdown

Swiss universities say that the government’s decision to drop the institutional agreement on relations with the European Union puts Switzerland’s top research position at risk, writes Isobel Leybold-Johnson for Swissinfo.ch.

In particular, they fear the consequences for Swiss participation in the EU’s key Horizon Europe research programmes and the Erasmus+ student exchange scheme. Yves Flückiger, University of Geneva rector and president of swissuniversities, the sector’s umbrella body, tweeted that the decision was “unfortunately not a surprise, but still a big disappointment. I am very worried about the future of the Swiss science community”.

The government’s announcement on Wednesday 26 May marks the end of years of negotiations towards a Swiss-EU ‘framework’ treaty to regulate long-term ties. Universities fear that this could lead to Switzerland being once again barred from EU research programmes, as happened in 2014 after the controversial vote to re-introduce immigration quotas for EU citizens.
Full report on the Swissinfo.ch site