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Political agreement prioritises vocational and independent research

November 07, 2016
All parliamentary parties support the agreement to distribute a total of DKK 555 million to research activities in 2017. Research can result in new solutions and products and contribute to growth – all important to Denmark's future, according to the Minister for Higher Education and Science.

On 03 November, all parliamentary parties entered into an agreement on the distribution of DKK 555 million from the research reserve, thereby securing the first part of the national budget for next year. The research reserve will be used for more vocational research, including technical research, as well as independent research.

Innovation Fund Denmark will receive DKK 181 million which will be used on research in areas such as bio-resources, infrastructure, drones, future welfare and space technology.

DKK 143 million is being allocated to the Danish Council for Independent Research and will be used to support and promote the most original ideas and initiatives in Danish research, and to help develop world-class Danish research.

A further DKK 191 million is being allocated to development and demonstration programmes in the areas of energy and the environment. While DKK 21 million is being allocated to strengthening entrepreneurship, focusing on entrepreneurship in education from ABC to PhD. Minister for Higher Education and Science Ulla Tørnæs stresses that research is of crucial importance to Denmark's future:

- Knowledge is Denmark's most important raw material. Our economy is based on knowledge and an important driver is that we can translate this knowledge into new solutions, procedures and products. I am therefore pleased that we have prioritised Innovation Fund Denmark, which supports projects such as those that ease production processes in companies or makes smart aids for the elderly or those with disabilities, says Ulla Tørnæs.

- It is also important that we prioritise independent research which is an important part of the food chain for original ideas translating to knowledge that can help develop our society, says the minister.

The research reserve for 2017 is being allocated as follows:

Research reserve pool 2017

Statements from political party spokespersons:

Anders Johansson, Det Konservative Folkeparti
- It has been important for Det Konservative Folkeparti to ensure funds have been earmarked for research into organic food production. The organic food market continues to grow nationally and internationally, and we think it is an important priority to ensure Denmark has the best foothold for maintaining it's strong position in this area. We are therefore very satisfied that DKK 10 million will be earmarked for research into organic food and ICROFS.

Jens Henrik Thulesen Dahl, Dansk Folkeparti
- Dansk Folkeparti (DF) is pleased that with this agreement we have ensured a fair balance between Innovation Fund Denmark and the Danish Council for Independent Research. DF is particularly focused on the funds that have been allocated to drone technology as part of the agreement. Finally, we are pleased that funds have been found for the Danish Foundation for Entrepreneurship.

Carolina Magdalene Maier, Alternativet 
- Alternativet had a clear priority during negotiations to ensure as much funding as possible for independent research. We are therefore very pleased that the amount being allocated to independent research has been increased by DKK 50 million compared to the government's original proposal. It has also been important to us to ensure that funds for research into welfare, health and education were earmarked for practical research as there is a great need for it.

Christine Antorini, Socialdemokratiet
- Although the research pool has been reduced significantly, more funds have been allocated to energy and environmental technology, the Danish Council for Independent Research and funds earmarked for organic food production and practical welfare research. However, Socialdemokraterne is worried about the consequences that making such significant cuts to research funding will have on future research, quality education and thereby jobs and growth for the benefit of society.

Henrik Dahl, Liberal Alliance
- I am very satisfied that the agreement helps support independent research and create a basis for research talents to flourish. The agreement provides the opportunity to support and promote the most original ideas and initiatives in Danish research.

Jacob Mark, SF 
- SF is pleased that despite cuts in general to research, we have helped ensure that there is continued focus on the green transition. We have fought for the allocation of significant funds to the successful green programmes MUDP and EUDP as this supports efforts to strengthen Denmark's nature and environmental protection efforts. Furthermore, we have ensured the Danish Council for Independent Research will receive more funds than last year, which is important as the council is crucial to the whole Danish research food chain.

Sofie Carsten Nielsen, Radikale Venstre
- The government has chosen yet again to make massive cuts to research. Radikale Venstre is deeply opposed to this prioritisation. The allocation of the research reserve has been a choice between the lesser of two evils. Reductions have been made to all areas that are necessary for us to ensure future knowledge, jobs and new solutions. With that being said, we in Radikale Venstre are pleased that independent research has not been hit as incredibly hard as it was last year. We have worked to ensure its funding, as independent research is where the whole research food chain begins.

Eva Flyvholm, Enhedslisten
- We have focused on ensuring the most possible funding for independent research and research into sustainability and green energy. This has been achieved with the allocation of the research reserve and is a high point in an otherwise dark day where the government has cut billions from research and green technology.

Jakob Engel-Schmidt, Venstre
- I am particularly pleased that there is a strong focus on technical research, including space and drone technology, which have great potential to create growth and jobs. Furthermore, I am very enthusiastic that we have strengthened the Danish Foundation for Entrepreneurship.

For further information please contact:

Director Henrik Brodersen, tel: +45 7231 8060, e-mail: hbo@ufm.dk
Press secretary Kristina Mie Hansen, tel.+45 7231 8012, kmh@ufm.dk

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