ALLEA’s President Antonio Loprieno participated in the summit organised by the Scottish Funding Council ‘Rising to the Challenges of a Post-Brexit World’ hosted by the Royal Society of Edinburgh on 30 May.
The event brought together Scotland’s college and university sectors to discuss how to address the challenges raised by the potential UK’s exit from the European Union. Participants included the Minister for Further Education, Higher Education and Science, Richard Lochhead, and Matt Lancashire, Director of Public and Policy Affairs at the Scottish Council for Development and Industry.
The debate revolved around two main questions: how to secure Scotland’s relationship with its European partners, and how to meet Scotland’s need for a skilled workforce in a post-Brexit environment.
“Political uncertainty can unintentionally lead to undermining long-standing research collaborations between international partners. European scientists must work together to protect and reinforce existing relationships among partners at all levels and ensure that close collaboration continues without disruptions,” said Loprieno.
Since the vote to leave the UK on 23 June 2016, ALLEA has worked closely with its member academies to raise awareness of the critical role of EU-UK scientific collaboration. In various statements and letters, the federation has called for greater clarity on the future relationship between EU and UK science policy and warned of the detrimental effects on the quality of scientific research and European citizens’ well-being on both sides of the English Channel.