AXA further strengthens its support to international science through an additional contribution of €100 million to the AXA Research Fund

AXA pursues its commitment towards independent academic research by adding €100 million to the AXA Research Fund budget for the period 2013 to 2018. This amount tops the initial €100 million granted to the AXA Research Fund at its inception in 2007, which have since then benefited 367 projects led by researchers from 49 nationalities working in more than 150 universities in 27 countries throughout Europe, Asia and the Americas.

21 June 2013

Posted in Financial results

by Daniel O’Byrne (see media contact)

This will allow the AXA Research Fund to continue its mission which is to support top-tier researchers in areas associated with environmental, socioeconomic and life risks, and to promote the dissemination of their discoveries in the public debate.

The AXA Research Fund will in particular increase its efforts to help scientists go one step further in sharing their knowledge with a broader audience in order to actively nurture public debate on risks threatening our societies. In this perspective, the AXA Research Fund has started new funding initiatives dedicated to innovative researchers with high potential to enter public debate, enhance risk awareness and develop participative scientific methods to better understand global challenges. It will also continue to regularly organize popularization workshops and academic events, as well as publish its Books of Knowledge, which provide a readily accessible and concrete introduction to the work of the supported researchers.

This scientific philanthropy initiative is a major component of AXA's corporate responsibility strategy, which aims to better protect people against risks.

Commenting on this announcement, Henri de Castries, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of AXA said: "We firmly believe that improving knowledge and understanding of the risk landscape is key to the development of societies. This genuine conviction is the starting point of our strong commitment to providing academic researchers with the means and the freedom they need. I am convinced that scientists are today's explorers. Supporting them is not only our core responsibility but also a great honor as well as a unique chance to enrich common knowledge and contribute to better protecting people by helping them face the consequences of climate disasters, increase in life expectancy, sociopolitical events and many more…"

Professor Thomas Kirkwood, President of the AXA Research Fund Scientific Board further commented: "The AXA Research Fund has managed to build a very distinctive reputation for the supported works, through a process based on the highest quality peer reviews contributing to the selection of outstanding institutions and top-tier researchers. As new Scientific Board President, I am fully committed to maintaining and developing the reputation for excellence that the AXA Research Fund has established. I am particularly happy about the new commitment to reinforcing support to the dissemination of scientific discoveries, as I am convinced of the tremendous benefits that will come with a stronger engagement of the researchers into the public debate."

The AXA Research Fund grants are all awarded following a robust selection process based on academic standards and overseen by a Scientific Board composed of renowned senior academics and several AXA Group representatives. This Scientific Board is supported by an operational team managed by Godefroy Beauvallet, Head of the AXA Research Fund.