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To make it easier for scientists from Nordic countries to apply for multinational European Union grants, the Nordic Medical Research Councils and the Nordic Councils of Ministers launched a program in October that aims to encourage more collaboration across Scandinavia.

The initiative has a budget of about $1.25 million (US), which will be divided among two to three research networks--the virtual Nordic Centres of Excellence in Molecular Medicine. The money will be given to research collaborations that involve scientists from at least three Nordic countries; the proposals will be evaluated based on the scientific merits of the individual groups.

"Ultimately, we'll have to compete in the [European research] area anyway, but this is a fine program in the sense that it will give the Nordic countries some kind of kick-start," reckons Poul Henning Jensen at the University of Aarhus, Denmark.

As with the 6th Framework Programme, the Nordic...

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