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Current EAMBES Governance and the past Executives of EAMBES.
On October 22nd 2014 the European Parliament (EP) approved the new European Commission led by Mr. Jean-Claude Juncker. Members of the European Parliament (MEP) backed the new Commission with 423 votes in favour, 209 votes against and 67 abstentions. The EPP, S&D and ALDE groups had given their support to the Commissioners, whereas the Greens, GUE/NGL, Eurosceptic and far-right MEPs had all announced they would vote against. The abstentions were from the British Conservatives and their Polish and German ECR group allies.
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The Senate elections were held on the 28 September in France and were marked by the defeat of the Socialist Party, the current Government majority. The Conservatives and the Liberals now hold the majority in the Senate. Following this week’s victory, the Conservatives and Liberals now hold the absolute majority, with 188 Senators. The Socialists hold 151 seats. These results mark the third electoral defeat of the Government majority in 6 months (municipal elections, European elections and Senate elections). There are now 2 senators from the Front National (nationalist party).
A policy roundtable discussion entitled “Lost in Translation? How to get healthcare biotech from lab to clinic for a healthier wealthier Europe” will take place in the European Parliament in Brussels on the 9 October 2014. The event is being hosted by European Science in Business with the support of the European Association of Bio industries (EuropaBio)
The ninth annual European Researchers’ night- the Europe-wide initiative took place on Friday the 26 September 2014. The annual event was launched in 2005 in 20 cities in 15 countries. The events are selected through open and transparent competition following a public call for bids. Whilst the event placed particular emphasis on the need to enhance the public profile of researchers and to stimulate interest in research careers, especially amongst young people it offered ample opportunity to network with fellow researchers in a relaxing and less formal environment.
The European Parliament commenced its hearings of Commission nominees on 29 September with the hearing on the Commissioner-designate for Trade, Ms. Cecilia Malmström (Sweden) -current Commissioner for Home Affairs- in the INTA Committee. Ms. Malmström as the Commissioner for Trade would be responsible for the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) negotiations. The hearing was eagerly anticipated due to the controversy around certain aspects of TTIP, and specifically around the 'investor-state dispute settlement' (ISDS) -a mechanism that would allow foreign investors to take national governments to court if they believe they have been treated in a way that breaches free trade deals-. The controversy followed Ms. Malmström's written response to initial questions from MEPs, suggesting that she rejected the need for ISDS in TTIP.
On 16 September 2014, a debate was held in the European Parliament on structural funding for Horizon 2020 during which new budgetary issues were highlighted. The Commission will see a shortfall of 40% of funding commitments to researchers which could lead to the Commission failing to make good on their contractual arrangements and putting many research projects under threat.
On 10 September 2014 together with the announcement of a change in Commission portfolios, came President of the Commission, Jean-Claude Junker’s list of Commissioners-designate.
On 10 September 2014, President of the European Commission Jean Claude Juncker announced a reorganisation of certain key portfolios.
On the 16 September 2014, the European Commission presented the ERA progress report. It shows that the ERA partnership between Member States, research stakeholders and the Commission has made good progress in delivering European Research Area (ERA), and that the conditions for achieving it identified in 2012 (see the Commission’s Communication - A Reinforced European Research Area Partnership for Excellence and Growth) are in place at the European level.
The hearings of the Dr. Vytenis Andrukaitis, Commissioner Designate for Health and Food Safety took place in the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI) today the 30 September 2014. MEP questions and the atmosphere of the debate was largely non-confrontational, indicating a likely endorsement for the candidate. It is interesting to note that Dr. Andriukaitis seemed markedly more confident on human health matters, showing both his professional background and his political experience. His answers on what is now the majority of his portfolio, regarding food safety and animal matters, tended to be more often vague.