The failure of European Union (EU) leaders to reach an agreement over the EU budget last week need not be a setback for research in the region, European Commissioner for Research Janez Potočnik said today (June 22).

Potočnik, speaking after a press conference by European Commission President José Manuel Barroso in Brussels, put a positive spin on the budget summit collapse, saying that it could now open up a new debate about EU spending.

"If a real discussion now starts about having a budget that looks forward to the future and spends more on science and research, then it could turn out to be a good thing," his spokeswoman Antonia Mochan told The Scientist.

Potočnik's comments may help reassure European scientists concerned that the collapse of the EU summit last week and the failure to agree on a budget could have negative consequences for research, delaying projects and...

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