step4EU Science, Technology, Education and Policy for Europe

Related activities

Under development.

The R&I Observatory is an information system intended to support the strategic development of R&I policies in the EU. It should serve the information (qualitative and quantitative) needs of Commission services to monitor and assess R&I policies as well as provide added value services to Member States and Associated Countries and other stakeholders involved in the development of R&I policies. It is project set in the long-term aiming to build on and in due course supersede the current patchwork of R&I information systems (incluing Erawatch, Netwatch and IU Information and Intelligence System).

The business of the Observatory shall be to collect, organize, produce and disseminate data and analyses on innovation and research, in a way that contributes to a step change in our understanding of such activities as levers of growth, so that a decisional advantage for economic and public actors in the EU is created by the evidence base produced.

  1. Collection and production of data and analysis on research and innovation, in both qualitative and quantitative dimensions, namely in respect of research and innovation sstems and policies, within the EU and abroad
  2. Publication, dissemination and valorization of such data and analysis, whether produced by the Observatory itself, or ceded it by other parties
  3. Application of the state of the art on the methodologies for the production of such data, on the conditions for their pertinence and reliability, as well as on the production of various forms of analyses that such data allows.

The geographical scope include the 27 Member States, the Associated States and some third countris (selection of key trading partners of the EU) and the regions within the EU (at a later stage).

The Observatory will be accessible to users and will offer access to the information and analysis available on research and innovation policies in the Member States, Associated Countries and selected Third countries. Access will be achieved through ‘’ concept.

Netwarch is the European Commission's central information platform on European transnational research programme collaboration. Developed by JRC-IPTS in collaboration with DG Research and Innovation and centred on the ERA-NET scheme it provides systematic mapping and monitoring of trans-national research cooperation activities in Europe and beyond. It provides information on the composition and activities of ERA-NETS and other collaborative networks, as well as the results of analysis of the evolution and impact of transnational research collaboration activities. It also provides a platform for mutual learning among current and potential participants in transnational programme networks.

Netwarch supports transnational R&D programme collaboration in Europe by:

  • mapping networks;
  • providing information on Joint Calls;
  • analysing the impact of programme collaboration;
  • describing the scope and results of individual networks;
  • supporting mutual learning among transnational programme networks.

ERAWATCH is the European Commission's information platform on European, national and regional research and innovation systems and policies. Its main objectives are to support policy-making in the research and innovation field in Europe and to contribute to the realisation of the European Research Area (ERA).

It is a long term initiative jointly carried out by the European Commission's Joint Research Centre - Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (JRC-IPTS), Directorate-General for Research and Innovation (DG-RTD) and in close collaboration with the Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry (DG-ENTR).

ERAWATCH serves the information needs of decision-makers, policy analysts and the wider research community. It presents up-to-date information and analysis on national, regional and EU level R&D policies, actors, organisations and programmes and contributes to the realisation of the ERA by identifying policy options and improving the coordination of scientific and technological activities.

This European Commission's research initiative provides a platform for the long-term collection, monitoring, analysis and reporting of information on private-sector research and innovation activities in the EU, with particular emphasis on the relation between research, innovation and economic performance. The objective is to provide EU policy-makers and the business and academic communities with robust empirical evidence and analysis on the contribution of private-sector R&D to the growth and employment of the European economy. This should lead to the elaboration of medium and long-term evidence-based policy options to support the development and implementation of the Europe 2020 strategy which considers investment in knowledge and innovation a main driver for achieving a smart, sustainable and inclusive growth.
Funding instrument: Coordination and support action (not a research project) under FP7 Social Sciences and Humanities programme

Project funded within 7th Framework Programme, started July 2013 (still running)

Main goal: to encourage a better exploitation of European research and innovation programmes and participation in the European Research Area of the 13 target countries (which joined EU after 2004) (Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia) by setting up a process of analysis, dialogue, mutual learning among key concerned stakeholders, namely research, innovation and institutional actors. Within the project a network of key players within R&D&I systems was set .

The project aim was to establish a dialogue to understand how innovation systems can better address the participation to the European research and innovation area and enable innovation, competitiveness and openness. In order to obtain this goal MIRRIS has planned to set up an extensive policy learning exercise to identify barriers and to identify how innovation systems can better address the participation to the European research. The consortium has planned an organization of 3 rounds of policy dialogues in each country involving relevant stakeholders from three levels: decision makers, implementation institutions and operational structures.
Funding instrument: Coordination and support action (not a research project) under FP7 INCO programme
Project has finished, duration between 2008-2013

The Mediterranean Innovation and Research coordination Action (MIRA) is a dialogue and action platform encouraging scientific and technological collaboration between the Mediterranean Partner Countries (MPC’s) and European Countries since 2008. MIRA is an INCO-Net type project funded by the 7th EU Framework Programme for RTD supported by the Monitoring Committee for the Euro-Mediterranean S&T Cooperation in RTD (MoCo). With a Network involving 30 partners in 20 countries, the MIRA platform gathers expert voices including leading scientific communities as well as policy makers and stakeholders, bridging policy and research.

The principal objectives of the MIRA project are:

  • to develop and support the dialogue between EU – MPCs by bringing together policymakers and stakeholders from each MPC and EU Member states
  • to create a dialogue and action platform to identify common interest in research areas, set up S&T priorities, support capacity building activities and enhance the interaction between different cooperation instruments of the EC
  • to promote actions in order to monitor, develop and contribute to creating synergies among the various S&T cooperation programmes between MPCs/EU and foster the participation of the MPCs in the Framework Programmes

  • Workshops to raise awareness on FP7 opportunities
  • Training led by experts to improve the quality of participation and management of the partners of FP7 from the MPCs
  • Creating an Observatory on EU-MPC Science and Technology cooperation using agreed indicators for the monitoring of RTD cooperation activities. It will focus on the establishment of standard indicators for these purposes, to be used for the MoCo to support their recommendations. It will maintain a database on scientific production of the cooperation. It will engage in analysis of the dynamics of research system. More on the description of work required to set this Observatory:
  • Evaluation of the actual information points,
  • training managers, scientists, auditors and other relevant actors
  • promoting seminars of project writing and delivering recommendations for the national authorities.

MEDSPRING is built on previous experience of MIRA project adapted to the new reality of the Euro-Mediterranean policy and is focused on three societal challenges: Resource efficiency, High quality affordable food and Energy and aims at tackling policy objectives by creating a dialogue and coordination platform of governmental institutions, research organizations, associations and civil society.

Main actions:

  • Bringing together researchers, stakeholders, civil society and private sector to enhance effective cooperation on innovation;
  • Supporting European commission, Mediterranean countries and Member States to develop a research and innovation agenda accounting for the real needs and demand in the region;
  • Capacity building and trying to enhance research system capacity and adsorption, innovation, research cooperation and networking, participation in the European Research Framework Programme and other relevant programmes;
  • Promoting synergies among EU Member States, Associated Countries and Mediterranean Partner Countries based on joint programming;
  • Supporting and contributing to Euro-Mediterranean policy dialogue, particularly MoCo (Monitoring Committee for the Euro-Mediterranean Science & Technology Cooperation in RTD).
Includes a platform of Mediterranean observatories:

Creation of a platform of Mediterranean observatories linking, describing and analyzing the research and innovation potential and policies in selected areas where societal challenges for policy dialogue have been identified, to support monitoring policy development and cooperation. Creation of a platform of Mediterranean observatories linking, describing and analyzing the research and innovation potential and policies in selected areas where societal challenges for policy dialogue have been identified, to support monitoring policy development and cooperation.

Catalogue of existing observatories:
Project funded within the 6th Framework Programme

Final report:

The BIS-RTD project had as a general goal to build a methodological framework and a learning platform for regional and national RTD policy makers and stakeholders interested in obtaining support arguments for their requests to bring public research funding to the Barcelona target level.

BIS-RTD aimed at establishing a permanent co-operation platform among European regions to facilitate the emergence and circulation of good practices and contribute to RTD policy making coordination, so as to ensure the spreading and (partial) adoption of effective adoption models of good practices. In order to carry this purpose, the project addressed the following objectives:

  • Identify and evaluate existing RTD funding models, policies and instruments in participating regions/countries including their communication
  • Identify critical success factors for RTD funding policies resulting in enhanced research and innovation performance
  • Select and present good practice cases assisting policy makers through mutual learning and benchmarking
  • Formulate guidelines for successful target-oriented RTD funding policies and their implementation
  • Offer recommendations to RTD policy makers on communication tools for
  • obtaining funding levels necessary for ‘competitiveness-minded’ research, leading to new and improved products and services
The results of the project are:

  • One Country/Region Profile Report describing RTD public funding and communication models in each partner country/region.
  • One specific study about benchmarking, success factors and best practices in public funding in each partner country/region
  • One specific study about RTD communication models and best practices in each partner country/region
  • The BIS-RTD Guidelines on Public RTD Funding Policies and Communication.
  • The document includes a specific Executive Summary prepared to be independently distributed, especially to high level politicians and stakeholders
  • The BIS-RTD Final Conference was held in Istanbul on April 29, 2008. The results of the project were presented to an attendance of more than 100 RTD policy and decision makers and key stakeholders
  • A final Validation Workshop was held in Nova Gorica (Slovenia) on June 7, 2008 in order to decide the future sustainability of the project objectives and the future dissemination and the communication activities.
Period: current

EUA has been monitoring the evolution of public funding to higher education institutions and the impact of the economic crisis on higher education systems in Europe since its onset in 2008 and has published several reports.

An interactive online tool (EUA Public Funding Observatory) gives the user the opportunity to look at the data and the developments over years in a customised way.

Link of the tool:

  • The monitoring is conducted in close cooperation with EUA’s collective members, the National Rectors’ Conferences, who report on developments within their national higher education systems on a regular basis. The continuous feedback from various sources provides up-to-date reports of the situation and highlights the evolving nature of the effects the crisis has had on university funding across Europe.
  • The main objective of the monitoring is to look at the impact of the crisis on universities’ public funding and to identify in particular the trends in public funding across Europe. It also explores how the crisis has affected the nature of public funding and how such shifts are influencing universities at institutional level.
supported by UNESCO

SPIN is a revolutionary cluster of databases equipped with powerful graphical and analytical tools that has been devised for decision-makers and specialists in science, technology and innovation (STI) by UNESCO’s Regional Bureau for Science in Latin America and the Caribbean. Now, UNESCO is preparing to extend the SPIN platform to the rest of the developing world. By 2015, this four-year project hopes to have extended coverage to approximately 130 developing countries.

SPIN provides regularly updated information on:

  • STI policies;
  • operational STI policy instruments; STI legal frameworks;
  • STI national systems: organizational charts and STI priorities;
  • a data analysis software managing more than 300 temporal series of indicators: economic, social, educational, industrial, scientific, technological, on innovation, infrastructure, ICTs, etc;
  • a database listing organizations that provide technical and financial co-operation on STI issues;
  • a web-semantic-text mining multilingual tool with different applications for selecting STI strategic priorities.;
  • a digital library with more than 900 UNESCO documents on STI policies.
This project was about systematically improving the knowledge on the situation of research active universities in Europe and how requirements and conditions imposed by national funding agencies affect this situation. This was done through four main steps:

  • Assessment and further development of the templates for data on universities and public funding agencies as provided by JRC-IPTS.
  • Collecting data for a sample of 60 public funding agencies (in two waves including 30 agencies each) across the EU and six associated countries.
  • Collecting data for a sample of 200 research active universities (in two waves including 100 universities each) across the EU and six associated countries. In addition to general information, data was collected on governance and management, human resources, academic output and third mission activities.
  • A descriptive analysis of the information provided through the data collection on public funding agencies in two steps; a preliminary analysis based on the first subset of data, and a final analysis based on the full dataset.