Austrian research institutions support the EMBL vision

Austrian research institutions support the EMBL vision


Dear Minister Faßmann,

We are signing this petition to express our strong support for EMBL, the European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Europe’s only intergovernmental institute for life science research.

EMBL has long been a flagship for life science research in Europe and has been particularly important for the development of life science research in Austria: many of the leading researchers at the Vienna BioCenter spent formative years of their careers at EMBL in Heidelberg, and the connection continues to be strong.

Via the European Bioinformatics Institute, EBI, EMBL also plays a crucial role in the basic backbone of data exchange across Europe (and the world), an issue that has been of particular importance during the Covid pandemic.

Under its dynamic new Director General, Professor Edith Heard, EMBL is currently seeking to renew its vision, with greater focus on the pressing problem of climate change, and is requesting a budget increase after many years of not keeping up with inflation.

During the upcoming EMBL Board meeting in autumn, member states are going to decide on the budget increase. Negotiations have already begun, and Austria’s support for the Director General’s request is likely to prove crucial. In other words: The realization of EMBL’s vision depends on Austria!

EMBL truly represents the best of Europe. Austria is one of the founding members of EMBL and should reinforce its commitment in challenging times.


Magnus NORDBORG, Scientific Director, Gregor Mendel Institute of Molecular Plant Biology (GMI)
Jürgen KNOBLICH, Scientific Director, Institute of Molecular Biotechnology (IMBA)
Jan-Michael PETERS, Scientific Director, Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP)


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Prof. Nicholas BARTON, Professor, IST Austria - Institute of Science and Technology Austria

Prof. Dr. Arndt von HAESELER, Head of the Center for Integrative Bioinformatics Vienna (CIBIV), MPL - Max Perutz Labs Vienna

Prof. Thomas HENZINGER, President, IST Austria - Institute of Science and Technology Austria

Dr. Daniele SOROLDONI, Managing Director, VBCF - Vienna BioCenter Core Facilities

Vice Rector Univ.-Prof. Dr. Jean-Robert TYRAN, Vice Rector for Research and Internationalisation, UniVie - University of Vienna