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Greece to Set Up Quantum Computing and Genomics Institutes

Greece Quantum Genomics
Research in UCL Quantum labs. Credit: UCL Mathematical and Physical Sciences,  Creative Commons Attribution 2.0/Wikipedia

On Wednesday, Greece announced it is setting up two new research institutes on Quantum Computing and Quantum Technology and Human Genomics.

The first institute will be based at the National Centre of Scientific Research “Demokritos” in Athens, and the second will be located at the Foundation for Research and Technology (Forth) on Crete.

Quantum technology: The emerging field of physics and engineering

Speaking in Parliament, Deputy Development & Investments Minister Christos Dimas said the first institution will produce research that can be applied across multiple industry sectors, and it will set up interdisciplinary programs, graduate-school programs, and programs for public administration and business managers.

It will also allow the use of European Union funds available for research in the quantum technology field, which will directly benefit the national economy, he added.

Quantum technology promises improvements to a vast range of everyday gadgets, including more reliable navigation and timing systems, secure communications, accurate healthcare imaging through quantum sensing, and powerful computing.

Institute on Genomics “to improve public health in Greece”

The second institution, on genomics, will utilize research on local genome variations to improve public health in Greece and to understand genetic issues specific to the Greek population in order to improve diagnosis and therapy, Dimas noted, while pointing out that Greece already has high-level researchers in genomics and computational biology whose experience and skill has great potential.

Genomics is the study of all of a person’s genes (the genome), including interactions of those genes with each other and with the person’s environment. It has provided applications in many fields, including medicine, biotechnology, anthropology and other social sciences.

The Greek minister told Parliament that “to a great degree their funding will come from the Recovery Fund.” Therefore, “funding is guaranteed to a great degree,” Dimas added.

Greece’s Recovery and Resilience plan, approved by the EU in 2021, will help Greece become more sustainable, resilient, and better prepared for the challenges and opportunities of the green and digital transitions.

To this end, the plan consists of 106 investment measures and 68 reforms. They will be supported by €17.77 billion in grants and €12.73 billion in loans. Almost 38 percent of the plan will support climate objectives and about 23 percent of the focus will be on fostering the digital transition.

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