Bern, 22 September 2023
In their statement on the ERI Dispatch, the Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences call for the financing of their core tasks be secured in the funding period 2025 to 2028 as well. One example of this is the important dialogue between science and politics and science and society, whose significance was clearly revealed in the light of the coronavirus pandemic. The challenges relating to the topics of climate, energy, health and digitalization also call for new solutions. In addition to these core tasks, the Academies implement numerous relevant projects that were previously not included in the catalogue of core tasks, such as MINT funding, for example. If these tasks now also have to be funded from this source, the Academies’ financial base will be eroded. A funding gap of CHF 6.25 million on average per annum will occur over the entire funding period. This would lead to a noticeable and lasting impairment for a network of more than 100,000 scientists and scholars who work on a voluntary basis.
Although the savings are drastic for the Academies, they will hardly bring any financial relief for the Federal Government. The shortfall for the Academies, totalling CHF 25 million, corresponds to 8.23 per cent of the Academies' budget, but to only 0.8 per thousandth of the total ERI funding amount of CHF 29.7 billion for the period 2025 to 2028. With this sum of nearly CHF 30 billion, the Federal Council is pursuing the ambitious goal of continuing to play a leading role in the ERI sector at the European and international levels.
The Academies fully support the content of the Federal Council’s objective. However, they will hardly be able to make the required contribution to it with the proposed financial allocation. The financial base must therefore be brought into line with the expectations.
You can find the full statement of the Swiss Academies of Arts and Sciences on the ERI Dispatch here.
Sindy Schmiegel Werner
Head of Communication a+
+41 31 306 92 39