Open access, open data, open source – science is changing and the possibilities could be endless.
In July, Horizon looks at the practicalities and implications of open science - a drive to increase free access to research data and enable more citizens to share their ideas with academics.
The increasing digitisation of research means that there are more and more opportunities for collaboration between researchers, and for publicly funded researchers to share their findings and data.
Open science is a priority for Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, who called for Europe to adopt 'a new strategy that is fit for purpose for a world that is open, digital and global' during A new start for Europe: Opening up to an ERA of Innovation, an event organised on 22-23 June in Brussels.
Nature Editor-in-Chief Philip Campbell explains his belief that academic journals will be free to read eventually, and we hear from a citizen scientist about what they get out of helping researchers gather their data.
We also hear about plans for a European Science Cloud to give researchers access to data and resources, wherever they are.
A lot of lip service is being paid to making scientific papers free to access but when it comes to action there is a lot of hypocrisy, according to Robert-Jan Smits, the EU's outgoing director-general for research, science and innovation. He has recently been appointed the EU's special envoy on open access, tasked with helping make all publicly funded research in Europe freely available by 2020.
Open science should mean that citizens have the chance to put questions to scientists and have a say on the kind of innovations that are being funded, according to Professor Alan Irwin from the Copenhagen Business School.
Researchers and funding agencies will foot the cost of publishing academic papers rather than readers, as academic journals adapt to a world in which open access becomes increasingly important, according to Nature Editor-in-Chief Philip Campbell.
In November, Horizon discovers a futuristic world of transparent e-books, plastic solar cells and electronic skin with a look at some of the applications of organic electronics. We speak to organic chemist Prof. Andreas Hirsch about how using carbon rather than silicon in electronics can make them flexible, lightweight and biocompatible and could lead to a new generation of human-looking robots and ‘chemical’ computing. We take a look at work to create electronic skin – self-healing, stretchable material that can mimic some of the functions of human skin – and its potential uses. We discover how thin, flexible, plastic solar cells could turn surfaces such as cars and fabric into sources of renewable energy, and we uncover some novel approaches to charging wearable electronics.
The world looks very different from this time last year. The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the centrality of science, research and innovation, accelerated some changes already in the works, but also exposed our weaknesses. In September, Horizon looks at how the pandemic is reshaping Europe in areas including health research, work, tech, transport and food – and how research can contribute to Europe’s recovery over the coming years. We will also be covering the European Research & Innovation Days at the end of the month, which will bring together scientists, policymakers, entrepreneurs and citizens to debate how research and innovation can ensure that the transition to a post-coronavirus society is sustainable, inclusive and resilient.
In three decades of diving at locations including the Red Sea and Great Barrier Reef, Gal Eyal has seen coral reefs transform in front of his eyes.
Imagine lying on a green hill watching the clouds go by on a beautiful day. The clouds you’re probably thinking of are cumulous clouds, the ones that resemble fluffy balls of cotton wool. They seem innocent enough. But they can grow into the more formidable cumulonimbus, the storm cloud. These are the monsters that produce thunder and lightning. They are powerful, destructive and intensely mysterious. They may also be getting a lot more common, which makes understanding their workings – and their effects on the human world, including how we construct buildings or power lines – more important than ever.
Scientists are studying past conditions to understand which corals migrated to deeper waters.
A lack of knowledge about thunderstorms means we could be overengineering our tallest buildings.
Dr Kate Rychert studies ocean plate structures.