Brussels, 20 Jun 2003
The European Parliament has approved the Council common position on the production and development of Community statistics on science and technology.
The aim of the legislation is to develop a new generation of statistical variables for Community for monitoring science and technology activities and achievements. A previous Council decision on statistics expired in 1997, and since then, a legal vacuum on the definition and clarification of statistics has existed.
A harmonised set of statistics is considered important by all, as statistics play a valuable role in the definition of EU science and technology priorities. The Commission proposal also aims to improve the quality of data standards by introducing statistics on new fields such as human resources, innovation, gender representation and patents.
This was the second reading of the proposal by the Parliament. All of the institutions amendments from the first reading were incorporated into the Council common position, and predominantly addressed the need to take the regional dimension into account when producing statistics, the importance of cooperation with the OECD (organisation for economic cooperation and development), and the necessity of reporting to the Parliament regularly on the acquisition of statistics.