The European Molecular Biology Conference was created in 1969 with the aim of promoting research in molecular biology in Europe by supporting training programmes and the exchange of information between European researchers.
EMBC member states are Austria, Belgium, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.
The conference has its headquarters in Heidelberg. Its main task is to finance the general programme of the European Molecular Biology Organization, a learned society whose members are leading European molecular biologists.
With EMBC funding, EMBO carries out a programme of short- and long-term fellowships and organizes advanced training courses, workshops and conferences in member countries. EMBO completes her activities with the EMBO Young Investigator Programme. The activities in this programme foster interaction between young European scientists who are just starting a career as independent researchers and include the encouraging of the dialogue between science and society and a pilot project to set up an electronic platform to access bibliographic data in the life sciences.
Swiss researchers have benefited extensively from the EMBO fellowship programme and participate intensively in the other activities of the organization. This is certainly one of the reasons why our basic research in the area of modern biology has achieved a high standing. As a result of the large technical expertise of our own laboratories, fellowship applications of Swiss researchers are now below the scale of our contributions to the EMBC budget, while the proportion of EMBO fellows in Swiss laboratories is considerably above. The presence of this highly qualified and largely cost-free workforce is the greatest benefit Switzerland is currently deriving from its membership in the EMBC.
Switzerland's financial contribution to the EMBC amounts to about 3% of the annual budget of around 13 million €. The State Secretariat for Education, Research and Innovation SERI represents Switzerland in the EMBC and manages its financial participation.