Discussion paper

Green paper on a common strategic framework for EU reseach and innovation funding

Higher education Europe

The public consultation on the Common Strategic Framework for EU research and innovation funding (launched on 9 February 2011) closed on 20 May 2011. The response to the consultation has been nothing less than overwhelming, with an unprecedented 775 position papers received and more than 1300 responses through the online questionnaire.

The consultation website (http://ec.europa. eu/research/csfri) was visited nearly 90 000 times by over 38 000 unique visitors from 152 countries.

Contributions were received from a wide range of stakeholders, the highest numbers coming from
the research and higher education sectors, followed by the business sector and public administrations.

Across all of these contributions, a number of messages are clear:
• There is an overwhelming support for the CSF concept to bring research and innovation closer together, in order to enhance the impact of EU funding.
• Simplification is considered to be a key priority for the Common Strategic Framework.
• Respondents strongly support an approach which places EU funding for research and innovation close to societal challenges and therefore to the EU’s ambitious policy objectives in areas such as climate change, energy security and efficiency, demographic ageing or resource efficiency;
• There are strong calls to maintain continuity as regards the elements of the current programmes which are considered to be the most successful, notably the European Research Council and Marie Curie actions, along with recurring messages on keeping collaborative research (centered on themes/challenges) as the core element of the future funding programme.
• There is a recurring call for funding opportunities to be less prescriptive and more open, with sufficient scope for smaller projects and consortia, as these allow for more innovation.
• In terms of creating more innovation, the main message is that the EU should support all stages in the innovation chain, with the appropriate instruments that are fit for purpose.
• There is a shared view that all SMEs with innovation requirements should be able to benefit from EU research and innovation funding.

• There is a widespread view that the CSF will need both curiosity-driven and agendadriven activities, working in tandem. Many point out that agendas should focus on main goals and principles. Also in the context of  innovation, there is strong support for more bottom-up approaches.

This document provides a summary analysis of the public consultation outcome. More in-depth
question by question analysis, including the views of different groups of stakeholders, will be made
available on the public consultation website in the coming weeks.

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