EU states urged to progress on Europe-wide research area

Country-level reforms are the next stage needed in the development of a Europe-wide research area, according to a new report.

September 17, 2014

European Union

The European Commission report says that “good progress” has been made to date in setting the foundations to create an environment where researchers and scientific knowledge can flow freely between European countries.

But now countries need to do their part and better align their national research efforts with those of the EU, for example, the report says.

The latest progress report analyses how far along countries are in preparing the ground for a European Research Area. It finds that research organisations and institutions, and funders, show strong support for the creation of ERA.

Máire Geoghegan-Quinn, European commissioner for research, innovation and science, said: “We have made good progress on the European Research Area in recent years. It is now up to member states and research organisations to make good on their commitments and put in place the necessary reforms.”

She added: “In particular, national and EU research efforts need to be much more closely aligned if we are to increase impact at EU level.”

Other areas that need more work, according to the report, include increasing competitive project-based funding in some countries and accelerating the pace of change in gender equality in research.

Countries will now put together roadmaps that will outline the next steps that they will take towards implementing the ERA. These will be published by mid-2015.

holly.else@tesglobal.com

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