Participation of the «New» EU Member States in the European Research Programmes — A Long Way to Go

Article of Klaus Schuch published in Foresight-Russia

Bereich: Forschungspolitik & Entwicklung

This paper discusses the participation of the EU13 countries in European research, mainly in the European Framework Programmes for RTD. It briefly reflects on the structural challenges of the then Central European candidate countries during the transformation period in the 1990s to recall their starting-point at the time when they first became associated to the European Framework Programme for RTD. Almost 15 years after the first full association to the European Framework Programme for RTD, the actual participation situation of the ‘new’ EU member states is analysed. Next, the European Union’s measures to enhance widening participation of organizations in the ongoing European Framework Programme for RTD with the name ‘HORIZON 2020’ are concisely described. Finally, conclusions are drawn as to why – despite several efforts – participation of the EU13 is still low.

It is argued that structural deficiencies of national innovation and research systems have to be further eliminated, that smaller corrective measures like upgraded NCP systems may be necessary but not sufficient and that a sustainable enhancement of participation has to be based on increasing excellence adopted to the national and local context. The paper introduces a set of adoption actions such as awareness-raising, information and advice to access HORIZON 2020, advice and quick checks of project ideas, support for international partner search, creation of sectorial or cross-sectorial interest groups, promotion of local academia-industry cooperation and their cross-border networking, provision of training to potential EU project managers etc. Such activities are often performed by NCP systems. They can help to mobilise ‘dormant’ research communities, and perhaps upgrade a proposal from one level to the next. Nonetheless, they can neither generate excellent ideas nor write outstanding research proposals which are needed to compete successfully in HORIZON 2020. NCP systems can neither balance structural deficiencies of national innovation and research systems, nor replace forward-looking STI policy-making which requires special efforts to implement.


Citation: Schuch K. (2014) Participation of the «New» EU Member States in the European Research Programmes — A Long Way to Go. Foresight-Russia, vol. 8, no 3, pp. 6-17.

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AutorInnen: Schuch, K.

Tags: European Research Area, foresight, widening

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Kategorie: Zeitschriften

Publikations Datum: 2014

Bezug: Online (download)