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The Knowledge-Sharing Platform

14 May 2014

Research Executive Agency reorganises to take on the new mandate

As of 1 May 2014, the Research Executive Agency (REA) has a new organisation chart. The new setup was necessary for the Agency after the Commission decided in December 2013 to increase the REA’s role under Horizon 2020. As of 2014, the REA will manage a large share of research and innovation projects funded under Horizon 2020, in each of the programme's three main pillars, Excellent Science, Industrial Leadership and Societal Challenges, as well as in two of the programme’s cross-cutting themes, Science with and for Society, and Spreading Excellence and Widening Participation. The REA will also oversee the running of a large number of ongoing projects from the 7th Framework Programme. In addition, the Agency will provide administrative and logistic support services (such as participant validation, and expert management) to the whole of Horizon 2020 as well as certain other programmes such as Erasmus+.

To reflect these elements, the REA now has three departments: Excellent Science; Industrial Leadership and Societal Challenges; and Administration, Finance and Support Services. The Agency will gradually take over the new actions in 2014 and early 2015, as it builds up the capacity to manage them. The internal reorganisation is an important step to effectively undertake the new mandate.

The director of REA, Gilbert Gascard, is responsible for ensuring that the Agency implements all the tasks delegated to it. He is also responsible for the execution of the Agency's administrative budget, and he acts as the REA's appointing authority. Like all managers in the Agency, the Director is an EU official seconded from the European Commission. The REA Steering Committee represents the Commission and ensures that the Agency carries out the tasks assigned to it. Together with the Agency's Director, it provides high level management by adopting the Agency's administrative budget and annual work programme, approving an annual activity report and adopting implementing rules for personnel management and public access to documents. The REA Steering Committee is composed of five members who are senior managers from the Commission services. Its Chairman is Wolfgang Burtscher, Deputy Director General of the Commission's Research and Innovation Directorate-General.

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