In accordance with guidelines set out in the Treaty of Lisbon, the UK must conclude negotiations with the EU on the terms of its withdrawal within two years. Until then, the UK will remain a full member of the EU, and UK participants under Horizon 2020 will have full rights on an equal footing with participants from other EU Member States and Associated Countries.
After the UK withdrawal
There is reason to believe that the UK will apply for association to Horizon 2020 as from the time of EU withdrawal. In this case, UK research institutions and companies will be eligible to participate in projects under Horizon 2020 under the same conditions as currently.
If no association agreement is reached, the UK will have third-country status under Horizon 2020. In such a scenario, UK partners could still participate in projects but would in most cases not be eligible to receive funding from the EU. UK authorities could, however, decide to cover project costs for UK partners in Horizon 2020 projects, like the Swiss authorities do at present for Swiss partners.
It is still too soon to determine with any certainty what consequences the UK’s future association to Horizon 2020 may have for contracts already in effect. The Research Council of Norway recommends that Norwegian project participants and applicants for Horizon 2020 funding should continue cooperating with UK partners in the same way as before Brexit.