Over 4000 delegates from more than 80 countries and 400 journalists and science communicators are expected to attend the eighth edition of EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF2018), which starts today in Toulouse. Organised under the motto "Sharing science: Towards new horizons", this year’s edition of the largest interdisciplinary science meeting in Europe will run until 14 July.
Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, will address the audience at the opening ceremony today, and deliver a keynote speech on Tuesday 10 July at the plenary session on Horizon Europe, the next EU research and innovation programme for 2020-2027.
Commissioner Moedas said:
ESOF brings together all of society to discuss research and innovation. This is unique as well as topical and necessary, because we need more collaborative, open and impactful research and innovation. Our proposal for the next EU research programme, Horizon Europe, is built on that principle. I greatly look forward to the discussions with researchers, students, and the wider public in Toulouse.
The European Commission supports the EuroScience Open Forum since its creation in 2004. This year, it awarded a grant of €1 million from the current research and innovation programme, Horizon 2020, to the Université Fédérale Toulouse Midi-Pyrénées. This contribution represents around 25% of the total ESOF2018 budget.
The event programme reflects the Commission’s priorities for a more open science and a more open innovation as well as priority areas supported by Horizon 2020. More than 40 sessions relate directly to effective cooperation between science and society and pairing scientific excellence with social awareness and responsibility (e.g. citizen science). A large number of other sessions relate to priority areas supported by Horizon 2020 such as bioeconomy, environment and climate, or sustainable development. Scientific careers, science communication, gender equality, and public engagement feature heavily throughout.
The Commission itself organises a large number of sessions as well as a satellite event on communication, dissemination and exploitation of research. The Commission's Group of Chief Scientific Advisors and the European Group on Ethics in Science and New Technologies will meet Mona Nemer, the Chief Science Advisor of Canada, to discuss science advice for policy making.
Before the opening of the event, Commissioner Moedas attended a meeting of the European Student Parliament in Toulouse, which involved around 70 secondary school students from 10 European countries. After two days of committee work and a day of debates, they handed over their resolutions to Commissioner Moedas.
Contact spokespersons and press officers of the European Commission in Brussels