Mariya Gabriel, the incoming Commissioner for Innovation and Youth, will take over management of the €94.1bn Horizon Europe programme in November.
Mariya Gabriel, who currently acts as Commissioner for the Digital Economy and Society, has been selected by incoming President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen to fill the roles to be vacated by both Tibor Navracsics, the current Commissioner for Education; and Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation Carlos Moedas. It has been reported that Commissioner Gabriel’s new brief will include oversight of Horizon Europe, the EU’s largest research programme to date.
President von der Leyen outlined Commissioner Gabriel’s new brief in full in her Mission Letter, saying: ‘You should ensure swift agreement on and full implementation of the future Horizon Europe programme, working with Member States, the research community, civil society and other Commissioners. As part of this, you should ensure sufficient investment flows to disruptive research and breakthrough innovations, notably through the European Innovation Council. To stay competitive globally, we should better support our innovators to bring their ideas to the market. I want you to work with Member States to build a true European Research Area in which we pull together all national and European efforts. I want you to ensure that research, policy and economic priorities go hand in hand. This will involve working with Commissioners across the entire range of EU policies, contributing to the new industrial strategy and making the most of the new thematic missions within the future Horizon Europe programme.’
The Mission Letter continued: ‘I want you to focus on digital literacy and education to close the digital skills gap. You should lead on the updating of the Digital Education Action Plan and look at how we can increase the take-up of massive open online courses. You should also look at how to help increase awareness from an early age of disinformation and other online threats. You should maximise the potential of our exchange programmes to foster international cooperation in education, research and innovation.’