Ten countries are due to sign the Accession Treaty for entry to the European Union in Athens next month, and another three are waiting in the wings. This enlargement may have profound effects on EU science and its funding. Today (April 3), the European Commission released its first "Eurobarometer" survey of public opinion on science and technology in candidate countries. The survey of the views of 12,247 citizens in the 13 candidate countries is designed to produce results that can be directly compared with those of previous Eurobarometer surveys in EU member states.

On many topics, public opinion on science in the candidate countries broadly matches that in existing EU member states. The most interesting findings are a few significant areas of difference, which might affect science policy and the distribution of funding and investment.

"People are more optimistic about science in the candidate countries than in current member states…...

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