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Horizon Europe Canada Launch




Video recording:


Speaker presentations:






EURAXESS North America has partnered with the Delegation of the European Union to Canada to promote the EU's new framework program for research and innovation, Horizon Europe. The 90-minute virtual event will provide an overview of Horizon Europe to stakeholders and researchers interested in getting involved in the program. Learn about the open calls and opportunities for researchers in Canada to become part of the €95.5 billion (CAD $137.8b / USD $111.6b) in funding offered by Horizon Europe.


Researchers of any nationality and discipline are welcome to join. The event is targeted at PhD candidates, postdoctoral and established researchers, university research support offices, international relations offices, and other research institutions, as well as private sector actors.


The webinar will take place via Zoom on Thursday, October 28th, 2021 at 11:00 AM ET (8:00 AM PT / 5:00 PM CEST) in English. Convert to your local time zone here.


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Horizon Europe Canada Launch flyer



Date & Duration
- (11am - 12:40pm)
(Virtual), Canada
EventCanadaHorizon EuropeEuropean UnionEU2021




  • Welcome remarks - Dr. Melita Gabrič, Ambassador of the European Union to Canada

  • Introduction - Maria Cristina Russo, Director for Global Approach & International Cooperation in Research and Innovation, European Commission

  • Opportunities for Canadians, Canada's perspective - Dr. Ted Hewitt, President of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC)

  • Horizon Europe overview - Dr.Martin Penny, Head of Unit for International Cooperation Policy, European Commission

  • EURAXESS services - Jackson Howard, Regional Coordinator, EURAXESS North America

  • ERC grants and MSCA fellowships - Kristin Kraav, Estonian National Contact Point for ERC and MSCA

  • Q&A session - Moderated by Dr. Martin Penny

  • Closing remarks - H.E. Andrej Gregor Rode, Ambassador-designate of Slovenia to Canada





Ambassador Melita Gabrič began her tenure at the helm of the Delegation of the European Union to Canada on February 1st, 2021, after serving as Ambassador of Slovenia to Canada since 2018. Ambassador Gabrič holds a Ph.D. in International Relations and has extensive experience in both bilateral and multilateral international relations. Prior to her Canadian assignment, she served as Slovenia’s Director of Development Co-operation and Humanitarian Aid. Previously she served as Diplomatic Affairs Adviser to the Prime Minister as well as to the President of Slovenia. Ambassador Gabrič was also the Secretary General of the Bled Strategic Forum and led the Slovenian national process on business and human rights. She held the position of Senior Advisor on Human Rights to two Presidents of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. She was also the Consul General of Slovenia in New York.

Since 2020, Ambassador Gabrič has had the honour of serving as Chairperson of the Women Heads of Diplomatic Missions in Ottawa. The Ambassador speaks Slovene, English, French, and Serbian/Croatian. She enjoys jogging, downhill and cross-country skiing, as well as skating. She has a keen appreciation of contemporary art, literature, and design, and savours the beautiful natural landscapes and the rich cultural offerings of Canada.


Maria Cristina Russo is Director for Global Approach & International Cooperation in R&I in DG Research and Innovation at the European Commission, with responsibility for developing and implementing the EU international strategy for international cooperation in research and innovation and the international dimension of the Horizon program. She has been working for the European Commission since 1992 where she held several policy and managerial positions related to external relations, the EU decision-making process and various EU policies, in particular research and innovation. She was part of the team dealing with technical assistance to former Soviet Union, then member of the Cabinet of the Commissioner in charge of research policy when the European Research Area was launched. She was later appointed Head of Unit in the Secretariat-General of the European Commission holding different positions dealing with inter-institutional relations and policy-making, and in the department in charge of consumers' policies and financial services, before being appointed to her current position in 2013. Maria Cristina holds a degree in Political Sciences from the Luiss University of Rome and a Research Master Degree in European Studies from the College of Europe in Bruges. She has three children.


Dr. Ted Hewitt was appointed president of SSHRC in March 2015. He served as the inaugural chair of the Canada Research Coordinating Committee from 2017 to 2019. Ted was Vice-President, Research and International Relations, at Western University in London, Ontario, from 2004 to 2011, where he had been a professor of sociology since 1989. He was also a public policy scholar at the Brazil Institute of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C. A leading authority on Brazil, Ted has published in monographs, edited works and a range of academic journals. In 2018, Brazil’s Ministry of Foreign Relations named him Grand Officer of the Order of Rio Branco—one of the highest levels of merit—for the many years he has fostered bilateral business and research partnerships between Brazil and Canada.

Ted’s current research focuses on national and international innovation systems, with emphasis on the roles of universities, industry, and government in promoting economic prosperity in Latin America and beyond. He is co-chair of the Canada-Brazil Joint Committee for Cooperation on Science, Technology and Innovation, and a member of the board of the Brazil-Canada Chamber of Commerce.Ted hol ds a PhD in sociology from McMaster University.


Dr. Martin Penny is the Head of Unit for International Cooperation in the Directorate General Research and Innovation (DG R&I) in the European Commission. His Unit covers the EU’s international relations in R&I with the Americas, Australia and New Zealand, Russia, and Central Asia, implementing the recently-adopted Global Approach for research and innovation. During the previous seven years, Martin worked in the European Research Council Executive Agency (ERCEA), initially as Head of Unit for Physical Sciences and Engineering and then as Head of Unit for the Coordination of Call and Project Follow-Up procedures. Between 2005 and 2014, Martin held a series of policy posts in DG R&I in international relations, programme design, and as the political assistant to the Director-General. He worked for the UK Research Councils between 1997 and 2005, including five years as the Director of the Research Councils' Brussels Office. Martin has a PhD in synthetic organic chemistry from the University of Bristol, an MSc in science and society issues from the Open University, and held postdoctoral research positions in biological and medicinal chemistry at Arizona State University, the University of Manchester, and l’Université catholique de Louvain.


Jackson Howard is the Regional Coordinator for EURAXESS North America, responsible for Canada and the U.S. His main role is to inform the community of researchers of all scientific domains and nationalities based in North America about the funding and career opportunities that the European Research Area (ERA) offers (including, European, national, and regional funding opportunities). Another important role is the management of the European Scientific Diasporas in North America initiative together with the EU Delegation and EU Member States & Associated Countries. Prior to joining EURAXESS, he worked in the government and nonprofit sectors. Jackson holds a Master of Arts degree in International Relations from American University.


Kristin Kraav has worked as a National Contact Point since 2002. Currently, she is National Contact Point and the national delegate to the Program Committee for three areas of Horizon Europe: the European Research Council, Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, and Widening participation and strengthening the European Research Area. As NCP, she consults clients on proposal preparation and project implementation, pre-screens applications, and organises communication and training events. As Program Committee delegate she is in charge of consolidating national positions on draft Work Programs and monitoring participation in the framework programme. Kristin Kraav has a background in IT and adult education, and is regularly updating her training and event moderation skills.


H.E. Andrej Gregor Rode was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina in August 8th, 1973. Ambassador Rode holds an MA in Diplomacy and International Relations from the Centre d'Études Diplomatiques et Stratégiques in Paris and a Law Degree from the University of Buenos Aires. His most recent postings were as assistant to the Secretary-General in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Slovenia in 2020 and as responsible for relations with Egypt, Israel, Palestinians, and the Middle East Peace Process in 2019. Ambassador Rode has also been posted in Paris, Canberra, and Cleveland. He speaks Slovenian, French, English, and Spanish. He is married to Monika Rode and has a daughter and two sons.






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