A four-year study that will investigate the role of nuclear energy in Europe is getting underway.
The study, which will involve 26 European countries, aims to form a comprehensive picture of the role of nuclear power in Europe. It is thought to be the most comprehensive study on the nuclear power in the region to date.
At a cost of €3.6 million, the project is being funded by the European Commission's Horizon 2020 programme. It is being co-ordinated by the University of Barcelona and also involves the participation of Finland's Lappeenranta University of Technology (LUT).
The project has two phases, and will examine the role of nuclear power from national, international and civil societal viewpoints. The first stage will involve collection of national data on the 26 countries involved, as well as information on supranational institutions. In the second stage, some 20 international researchers will analyse the information that has been collected.
"Our aim is to use research knowledge to establish a socially, politically and economically stable situation for nuclear power," said Professor Karl-Erik Michelsen of the LUT School of Business and Management.
"The study will help us determine how nuclear power production, its side effects and the development of technology are apparent in, for example, national economy or the number of jobs, " Michelsen adds.
It will also examine political decision-making regarding nuclear power and the role of citizens.
The information gathered will be stored in a data bank, allowing both researchers and industry to utilise the information after the study. This will enable researchers to assess the current state of nuclear power across Europe and to construct future scenarios on how the role of nuclear power will evolve.