Final panel discussion at the conference EUFORDIA, February 25th 2009 in Prague.
The conference delegates agreed that analysis is necessary, since the EU attaches great importance to research and development. This is evident from the increased budget for the 7th framework programme, which exceeds 50 bn euros.
The EUFORDIA conference addressed the analysis of the contribution of FP6 in the whole of the EU. Speakers on the closing panel of the conference were Václav Pačes (Czech Academy of Science), Theodoros Karapiperis (European Parliament), Erik Arnold (Technopolis), Peter Fisch (European Commission, DG RTD) and Julia Lane (NSF, USA). The discussion was moderated by Vlastimil Růžička, Deputy Minister of Education, Youth and Sports, and Philippe Laredo from Université de Paris-Est and the University of Manchester.
Outcomes of EUFORDIA conference: EUFORDIA_conclusions.pdf (68,95 KB)
“Analysis of the outcomes of research is crucial for its financing. As is the case for all big budgets, we also need to know how efficient our spending on science and research is,” said Vlastimil Růžička about the results of the conference.
At the EUFORDIA conference a report was presented on the evaluation of FP6 that was worked out by a group of experts appointed by the European Commission.
Read the report here: FP6_Evaluation_Final_Report.pdf (2,60 MB)
The report concludes that it is necessary to change the whole culture of evaluating programmes for research and development. The participants supported the conclusions of the report and had a lengthy discussion of the problems of European research, which has high ambitions of creating an environment in Europe which will also enable the individual Member States to become globally competitive. Experiences from Korea and the USA show that governments should pay much more attention to the conclusions arrived at after the evaluation of programmes. An analysis demands accessible data about the outcomes of the projects and programmes. In this respect it is possible not only to use national initiatives but also to support this trend in EU programmes.
“I was delighted to see that this conference attracted so much interest from experts. This type of event would typically be attended by around 100 experts. 300 participants is a remarkable result,” said the European Commission representative, Peter Fisch, at the press conference.
The aim of the Czech Presidency is to ensure at least that initiatives to establish suitably intelligent systems for the registration of the results of scientific research are introduced on both national and EU level.
FP6 is the largest world-wide programme of international cooperation on research and development. FP6 was realised during 2002 – 2006 and had a budget of approximately 19 bn euros at its disposal. FP6 had a very varied thematic structure (research in the area of life sciences, information technologies, nanotechnologies, new materials, industrial processes, food industry, aviation and space, climate changes, energy, transport, social sciences and humanities, research in favour of small and medium-sized companies etc.) but also a broad structure of various project types. Whereas certain projects demanded a budget of hundreds of thousands of euros, others demanded up to tens of millions. Several projects called for direct participation of companies from the industry and others, such as the support of study programmes, were created for individuals. The Framework Programme is by no means intended to replace national research. FP6 should contribute to the solution of those problems that the whole of Europe is grappling with and that would be difficult to solve efficiently without multi-lateral international cooperation. Within the FP6 and EURATOM more than 10 000 projects were launched, the operation of which was realised by 74 400 teams from all around the world.
The participation of the Czech Republic in this complex programme can be described in these words: 1068 Czech
teams participated in the realisation of 876 FP6 and EURATOM projects.
The fact that in their realisation of FP6 projects the Czech teams cooperated with more than 14 000 (!) teams from all around the world testifies to the scope of international cooperation. Czech participation in aerial research and the EURATOM programme (regarding peaceful utilisation of nuclear power) is exceptionally successful; however, in several other areas we are average and we are also aware that more success in the area of information technologies and life sciences would greatly benefit the Czech Republic. Participation in biotechnological research could increase our chance to deal with crises. In the light of the fact that the EU supports the interconnection of private capital and public funds in the area of research and development in various ways, it is certainly gratifying that, according to a number of indicators, Czech industry took the opportunity to participate in FP6 programmes to a greater extent than the industries of other new Member States. However, this is a statement on the reaction “averaged across all industry sectors”, which could lead to untimely self-satisfaction: as directly alarming appears small the participation of Czech industry in research in the area of energy. Such international comparisons send us a certain signal, yet they do not give evidence of the real results and provide only a small insight into the contribution of this extensive programme for the EU.
View the video of the conference here.
Mgr. Tomáš Bouška
Spokesperson of the MEYS for CZ PRES
tel.: +420 257 193 426
fax: +420 257 193 753