Confusion and exclusion in EU university bids - IDEA League
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Updated daily at www.researchprofessional.com 21 March 2019 Montenegro makes plagiarism a criminal offence – p4 Robert-Jan Smits Beyond Plan S – p6 Earma 2019 Views ahead of the leading research management conference – p7, p8 Confusion and exclusion in EU university bids University networks ditch Swiss partners but take a risk with UK Universities seeking EU funding to grow cross-border by Ben Upton firstname.lastname@example.org collaboration say they have been forced to exclude Swiss institutions amid a lack of clarity over eligibility rules. for Higher Education, with its affiliated entities [and] But despite uncertainty over Brexit, British univer- any other public/private organisation active in the field sities have been included in several bids for a pilot call of education and training, research and innovation or of the European Universities Initiative, a scheme to in the world of work established in an EU member state build joint campuses, courses and other initiatives as or another programme country”. part of the EU’s Erasmus+ exchange programme. But Olivier Küttel, head of international affairs at “It was never actually clear, up until the time we EPFL, criticised the eligibility criteria. “Just let people submitted” who could be included in bids, said Leslie participate,” he said. “Why exclude somebody, espe- Zachariah, secretary-general of the Idea League alli- cially when they are good?” ance of five technology universities. By contrast, universities have been bullish about ETH Zürich in Switzerland is a member of the Idea British eligibility, despite the UK’s looming depar- League, but was ultimately dropped from the alli- ture from the EU. A University of Warwick spokesman ance’s proposal. The alliance said it seemed “excessive confirmed that his institution is a full partner in a pro- and unnecessary” that it had to exclude “an excellent posal called Eutopia. This is “despite, and not because and resourceful institution at the very doorstep of the of, Brexit” and is “unaffected by any potential politi- EU” and cutting out ETH Zürich had weakened its bid. cal uncertainty”, he said. “The rules were not clear concerning Erasmus+ A proposal called UNA Europa has the University of associated countries,” the Idea League said in a state- Edinburgh as a full partner. A spokesman said the uni- ment. The league said it had asked national contact versity joined after the British government confirmed points if ETH Zürich could take part in its proposal as it would cover the costs if the UK falls out of Erasmus+. an associated rather than full partner and so receive But this confirmation might not protect the bids. no Erasmus+ funding, but was cautioned against this. The Commission said that if the UK leaves the EU with- The EuroTech Universities Alliance, a group of out a deal, its institutions “will cease to receive EU science and technology universities, made similar funding—while continuing, where possible, to partici- complaints about having to exclude the Swiss Federal pate—or be required to leave the project on the basis Institute of Technology Lausanne (EPFL) from its bid. of the relevant provisions of the grant agreement”. “We addressed this with the European Commission Ludovic Thilly, chair of the Coimbra Group of uni- on numerous occasions,” said Inga Odenthal, deputy versities, which has 26 members participating in head of EuroTech’s Brussels office. She said that, on proposals, said that projects were taking a risk in an information day, potential applicants “were told involving British partners. “It is actually really fair and one thing [by the Commission] and then a couple of courageous,” he said. minutes later some of the statements were officially The call closed on 28 February and taken back”. received 54 proposals. Twelve projects The Commission told Research Europe that the involving about five to eight institu- Every new opportunity rules for participation are set out in the Erasmus+ tions are expected to be selected this for research funding from every sponsor in programme guide, which is “a public document, avail- summer to share €60 million. A sec- the EU, US & beyond able to all”. It said Switzerland had ruled itself out by ond pilot call is due later in 2019 and choosing not to participate fully in Erasmus+. full rollout is expected from 2021. The Independent news, The guide states that eligibility is open to “any higher Commission plans to launch at least 20 comment and analysis education institution holding a valid Erasmus Charter European Universities by 2024. Issue No. 493
2 editorial Research Europe, 21 March 2019 Edited by Sarah Richardson Deputy editor Daniel Cressey Europe@researchresearch.com Tel: +44 20 7216 6500 Unit 111, 134-146 Curtain Road, London EC2A 3AR elsewhere Onward ho! “Freedom, protection and progress: we need to build European renewal on these pillars.” French president Emmanuel Macron sets out his vision for combating populists and As the clock ticks down on Brexit, the only thing that is preventing stagnation ahead of the European elections. The Guardian, 4/3/19. certain is uncertainty “European centralism, European stat- ism, the communitisation of debts, a Throughout Research Europe’s publishing history, some themes Europeanisation of social systems and the have repeated at regular intervals. The balance between basic and minimum wage would be the wrong way.” Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, the leader of applied research has preoccupied our readers since our first edition in Germany’s ruling conservative CDU party, November 1996 (see Analysis, page 15). Funding inequality between east- agrees with French president Emmanuel ern and western Europe is another regular topic, as are open access and Macron that Europe must change but warns against centralisation. Welt am Sonntag, the shifting priorities of the EU’s Framework programmes. 10/3/19. Recent history shows the truth of the maxim that the more things change, the more they stay the same. The creation of Horizon Europe, “This shows how anachronistic the rule of unanimity in tax matters really is.” the successor to Horizon 2020, is delayed amid political wrangling, just Udo Bullman, the leader of the Socialists and as Horizon 2020 itself was delayed over budget squabbles. Academics Democrats group in the European Parliament, accuse industry of hogging funding, while companies complain that bemoans European finance ministers’ lack of agreement on a revenue tax for digital compa- researchers will not share results and intellectual property. The European nies. S&D press release, 12/3/19. patent is “coming soon”, just like it has been for the past decade. In recent times, another sizeable preoccupation has been added to the “Europe’s security and success are inextri- cably linked to that of the United States, list: Brexit. Since the fateful referendum in June 2016, the UK’s planned and this level of engagement and coopera- exit from the EU has kept scientists—and our reporters—on their toes. tion should be recognised appropriately in Last week’s spate of voting in the UK parliament turned what has all settings.” Gordon Sondland, the US ambassador to the been a divisive and fractured process into a national embarrassment. As EU, explains why his country has reinstated Research Europe went to press, 11 days ahead of the UK’s original exit the EU’s top diplomatic status after a January date of 29 March, no clear resolution was in sight. downgrade. US Mission to the EU, 4/3/19. From London we hear loud and clear the woes of UK researchers who fear “Have you ever seen the environment? The for their links to continental colleagues. But via our network of European word creates no pictures in the mind.” reporters from the Nordic nations to the Mediterranean, and our contacts Journalist George Monbiot says that less clinical terms are needed to engage the public with the across all 28 member states, we hear similar concerns. Of all the issues looming climate catastrophe. Twitter, 7/3/19. faced by scientists and funders, Brexit is the only one that provides a near universal response of dismay. Other developments are contentious—the “The main problems of WHO are unsolved by this reform.” open-access initiative Plan S is starting to face serious opposition, and Lawrence Gostin, director of the O’Neill debate is heating up around Horizon Europe—but only Brexit seems to Institute for National and Global Health Law unite researchers in opposition. in the United States, says that a planned shake-up of the World Health Organization Change is always unsettling. But prolonged uncertainty is worse. As does not go far enough. Science, 12/3/19. we have seen over recent weeks, EU researchers and universities are still unclear on the status of their partnerships with the UK in programmes from Erasmus+ to the European Research Council. This week, we report decade that several bidding consortia for the European Universities Initiative pilot, a scheme to create joint campuses and courses, have included “Bologna has proven to be a British institutions in their bids (See Cover). But others have been quick strategic asset for Europe, to warn that doing so is a risky strategy. The campaign within the UK to leave the EU was, in part, fought on because it means universities the assumption that expertise does not matter. But the chaos that has are no longer competing followed has shown that, if anything, expert knowledge is vital to over- against each other.” coming such uncertainty and forging a path ahead. Eric Froment, adviser to the French As Research Europe goes to press, for the last time in print format, we research evaluation agency AERES, praises are changing too—but our commitment to quality and accuracy remains the Bologna framework for higher educa- steadfast. Our new digital flipbook will continue to bring readers exciting tion cooperation, which started in 1999. and informative research policy news from Europe and beyond, regardless Research Europe, 26 March 2009 of how these borders are politically defined.
Research Europe, 21 March 2019 briefing 3 what’s going on Milestone for Square Kilometre Array project The governments of Australia, China, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, South Africa and the UK have signed a treaty establishing an intergovernmental organisation to oversee delivery of the Square Kilometre Array—the world’s largest radio telescope. The milestone will facilitate movement of people and equipment. Project leader, the SKA Organisation, said India and Sweden are working on signing and could still become founding members. It said there was “strong interest” from Canada, France, Malta, New Zealand, the Republic of Korea, Spain and Switzerland. Gender equality progress too slow, European Commission says The 2018 She Figures report on gender balance in EU R&D shows that progress towards equality must speed up, according to the European Commission, which produces the report every three years. Across the EU, women in R&D earned on average 17 per cent less than men in 2014, the report said. In 2016, women made up 39 per cent of doctoral graduates in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, but held only 15 per cent of top academic positions in these disciplines. Council looks for more thorough project evaluations National governments in the Council of the EU have urged the European Commission to reexamine how evaluators assess project proposals for the bloc’s R&D programme. It noted that “insufficient time has often been allocated to evaluations”, based on a 2018 report from the European Court of Auditors, and called for pay levels to be reviewed. It welcomed the Commission’s stated intention to improve communication with applicants and beneficiaries. Plan S funder changes course Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, a founding signatory of the Plan S initiative to enforce open- access publishing from 2020, has said it can no longer support the plan in its current form. The Swedish foundation cited researchers’ concerns and the timeframe. Marc Schiltz, chair of a leadership group of Plan S funders, said the group intends to address researchers’ concerns with an impending revision of the Plan S guidelines. “We hope that, once the updated Plan S guidance is drafted, Riksbankens Jubileumsfond will once more be able to commit itself to supporting the timeline for Plan S implementation,” he said. Court rules against EU authority on release of safety studies The General Court of the EU has annulled decisions by the European Food Safety Authority to refuse access to studies used in its assessment of the safety of the herbicide glyphosate. The court ruled that EU agencies may not refuse access to documents relating to “emissions into the environment” on the grounds that releasing them “would have an adverse effect on the protection of the commercial interests of the owners of the requested studies”, as Efsa did in at least two cases. There is an “overriding public interest” in knowing the contents of such studies, it said. Another record year for European patent applications The number of patent applications submitted to the European Patent Office in 2018 exceeded the record set in the previous year, the EPO has reported. Applications grew by 4.6 per cent in 2018 to about 174,000. EPO president António Campinos said the demand “means inventors and businesses see Europe as an attractive and valuable technology market”. See more on these stories and comprehensive daily news at researchprofessional.com
4 briefing Research Europe, 21 March 2019 news Montenegro criminalises plagiarism In a major escalation of the European push to curb aca- by Mico Tatalovic email@example.com demic misconduct, Montenegro has passed a law to make plagiarism a criminal offence. Etined now hopes to roll out similar laws across the “Montenegro is taking the lead,” said Dennis 47 member states of the council as well as Belarus, the Farrington, president of the board of the South East Vatican and Kazakhstan. European University in North Macedonia and an adviser Farrington says Etined is surveying its member states on the law. “This is the only such law that brings together on their academic integrity legislation, with results different elements of academic integrity. It is a positive due in November. “It may lead to some form of interna- step in advancing quality and countering allegations of tional recommendation or convention, which obliges corruption, nepotism, etc.” the 50 countries to adopt some law or policy dealing Although considered a serious problem in academia, particularly with transnational issues, such as diploma plagiarism has generally not been treated as a criminal mills and essay mills, improving security of recognition matter globally. In many jurisdictions, plagiarism is only of qualifications, and the confidence each country has in illegal if it also involves copyright infringement. the other systems,” he said. Montenegro’s parliament passed its Law on Academic Armenia and Kosovo have agreed to refer to codes of Integrity on 6 March. It creates a criminal responsibility conduct in draft laws on higher education. Officials and for plagiarism, self-plagiarism, failure to cite, and donat- academics in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North ing or buying authorship. Research institutions will have Macedonia and Serbia have discussed taking similar steps. to annul any studies, degrees, awards or positions held by But Vladimir Pesic, a biologist at the University of researchers found guilty of plagiarism and set up expert Montenegro, says Montenegro’s new law is ironic, panels to review allegations of wrongdoing. because some politicians in the country have committed The move was inspired by the Platform on Ethics, plagiarism without suffering any consequences. “There is Transparency and Integrity in Education of the interna- nothing left for scientists to do but to register as politi- tional human rights organisation, the Council of Europe. cians and that way avoid possible responsibility,” he said. Last chance for Horizon Europe deal Politicians were due to hold a last-minute extra session by Ben Upton firstname.lastname@example.org on the setup of the EU’s 2021-27 R&D programme as Research Europe went to press, in a desperate attempt Parliament proposal for a 25 per cent salary top-up for to agree a deal. beneficiaries in the EU’s newer 13 member states was Negotiators for the European Parliament, European a sticking point. This was part of a compromise drawn Commission and national governments in the Council up by the Parliament in exchange for relinquishing co- of the EU failed to resolve all of their disagreements decision over the “specific programme” that will help to on Horizon Europe in their fifth trilogue session on determine exactly what Horizon Europe will fund. 14 March, necessitating the extra session on 19 March. Jan Palmowski, secretary-general of the Guild of This was set to be a final opportunity to reach a deal European Research-Intensive Universities, said he could ahead of the Parliament election in May and avoid delays see why some of the EU’s older 15 member states would to the programme’s preparation and launch. have a problem. “Can you really ask [for example] Italy “Tomorrow we will have our last trilogue. We have to to subsidise other countries so that their researchers get reach an agreement before elections,” said research com- more money than [Italian] researchers?” he asked. missioner Carlos Moedas ahead of the meeting. “Normally A Parliament proposal that 40 per cent of the budg- the points that stay to the last are the difficult ones… et for the European Innovation Council’s Accelerator everything is on the table until everything is agreed.” instrument must be awarded as grants, as opposed to A spokesperson for the Council said that Council nego- loans or company shares, was another sticking point. tiators were optimistic an agreement would be reached. Council representatives finally reached a Partial Without one, Research Europe understands it would not General Agreement on the specific programme, but be possible to secure a deal before the election. this came too late for ministerial sign off and therefore But a source close to the negotiations indicated that for trilogue agreement ahead of the election. Horizon larger countries such as Germany and France could hesi- Europe’s budget will also be agreed later. tate. “I think the will is not yet there,” the source said. Follow breaking news on this story online at Other sources close to the negotiations said that a researchprofessional.com
Research Europe, 21 March 2019 briefing 5 Journal editors’ Plan S fears The Plan S initiative to enforce open-access publishing by Jonathan Owen email@example.com will do more harm than good, according to the editors of several journals interviewed by Research Europe. they support to make their publications openly available The controversial initiative—which is the brainchild immediately in compliant journals or platforms from 2020. of the European Commission’s former open-access envoy To date, 14 national funders and four charitable founda- Robert-Jan Smits (see Interview, page 6)—has been hotly tions have signed up to Plan S—most of them in Europe. debated in policy and academic circles. But journal edi- “All scientists should be able to publish their work tors have largely stayed out of public discussions. open access even if their institutions have limited Now editors have told Research Europe of their con- means,” the team behind the Plan has stated. cerns, which are especially acute around potential harm But Roger Jones, editor of the British Journal of to poorer authors and the impact on academic societies. General Practice, published by the Royal College of Mark Burgman, editor in chief of Conservation General Practitioners, also worries that article-processing Biology, published by Wiley for the Society for charges are a real barrier to researchers who do not have Conservation Biology, says Plan S is “misguided…heavy the funds to pay them. “Side-effects of the imposition of handed and will generate perverse, unintended out- pure open access run the risk of leading to adverse conse- comes that harm science internationally”. quences for patient care and public health.” One controversial aspect of Plan S is that it is likely The Plan S signatories’ insistence that hybrid journals to make payment of article-processing charges more are unacceptable in the long term is a particular point of common. Participating funders have said that they or contention. researchers’ institutions will pay such charges where Daryl Boness, editor of Marine Mammal Science, pub- applicable, and that journals and platforms must provide lished by Wiley for the Society for Marine Mammalogy, waivers for article-processing charges for authors from is worried that society publishers will lose income if low-income countries and discounts for authors from they flip their hybrid journals to full open access. “I do middle-income countries. not see us switching from a hybrid journal unless some But Burgman said that even with these waivers, the change comes along that removes the burden of cost plan could harm the exchange of knowledge and ideas. from the individual author or the society.” “The recent provisions for supporting authors from devel- Richard Horton, editor in chief of The Lancet, pub- oping countries are insufficient, and they do nothing for lished by Elsevier, is also concerned about the impact on disadvantaged authors in developed economies.” societies. Revenues from societies’ journals “are often Funders signed up to Plan S will require the researchers critical” to their work, he said. europe CEU says move from Hungary ...as space agency seeks public steer can be stopped The European Space Agency is asking the public for its in brief The Hungarian government could views on what missions the agency should be funding in yet prevent the Central European its space science programme for 2035-50. It is the first University having to move its foreign-accredited activi- time that ESA has invited the public to help identify pri- ties out of Budapest, the CEU has said. The government orities for its long-term space science programme. “We has not recognised that the university complies with rel- wish to encourage a sense of ownership and involvement evant laws, but is under pressure from its European peers in the space science programme with our public,” ESA’s to lessen its anti-CEU stance. The Bavarian government director of science Günther Hasinger said. in Germany offered support for a partnership with the Technical University of Munich, but the CEU said it first Technology flagship contenders announced needs legal certainty over its future in Budapest. Six projects on artificial intelligence, medical treatment and clean energy have each been given €1 million in EU Europe-China space mission given green light... funding to develop “ambitious research agendas” that A European Space Agency committee has approved a could receive long-term support. The projects won a call joint mission with China to study how the Earth’s mag- for challenges that could be tackled through Future and netic field is affected by the sun. Due to launch in 2023, Emerging Technologies flagships, three of which had the mission is “expected to revolutionise scientists’ previously been set up with budgets of up to €1 billion understanding of the physical processes taking place over 10 years. MEP Christian Ehler has warned that the during the continuous interaction between particles in projects are being held up by a lack of progress in nego- the solar wind and Earth’s magnetic shield”, ESA said. tiations on the EU’s 2021-27 R&D programme.
6 briefing Research Europe, 21 March 2019 i n t e r v i e w r o b e r t - j a n s m i t s End of an era After decades in the Commission, the man who knows European research better than anyone else talks to Craig Nicholson about his achievements. Having spent 30 years working on R&D at the European million in one minute” for the development of an Ebola Commission—eight of them running its research and vaccine and—of course—designing Horizon 2020. innovation directorate-general—Robert-Jan Smits was Possibly an accomplishment that will have an even more looking forward to a change of scene. lasting impact on research is the creation of the open- “It’s not like I have a pain in my stomach because I access initiative Plan S, unveiled in September 2018. have to leave everything behind,” he told Research Smits worked on this project as open-access envoy Europe after an “unbelievably hectic” day signing out during his final year at the Commission—at the request from the Commission and journeying across the border of Moedas. Under the rules that he drew up, participat- from Brussels to his new home in the Netherlands. ing funders require that researchers they support make Smits, who capped his run at the Commission as open- their papers openly available immediately from 2020. access envoy and the man behind the controversial Plan S Smits reserves his greatest ire for accusations that initiative, was preparing to start as president of Eindhoven Plan S will prevent researchers bound by its rules from University of Technology on 1 March. It will surely take collaborating with people who do not face restrictions some getting used to after his decades in Belgium. on where they can publish. “If scientists now tell me that Few people are able to work at the Commission in a sin- they will not cooperate any more if they are not allowed gle area for as long as Smits did. He joined DG Research to publish behind a paywall, I think we have a serious in 1989 as an assistant to the deputy director-general. problem with the role of science in our society.” There he stayed. This self-proclaimed “bad example of Smits also sees challenges ahead for his successor at mobility” claims he has “never done career planning” the helm of DG Research, “great guy” Jean-Eric Paquet. and that his elevation to the top job in DG Research in The biggest will be securing the €100-billion budget 2010 was down to luck. proposed by the Commission for the EU’s 2021-27 R&D Irish “super politician” and would-be research commis- programme Horizon Europe. “You can come up with sioner Máire Geoghegan-Quinn was “desperate” for help 20,000 policy initiatives, but the science community in preparing for a hearing about her potential job around judges you on only one thing: how much money you Christmas 2009, Smits says. And he was “the only person bring to the table,” he says. around”, having been prevented from holidaying by a On this point, a major source of regret for Smits is snowstorm. Duty called, and the session went well. “She “the lip service paid by most member states to science said to me: ‘You’re going to be my director-general.’” and innovation”. With the exception of Germany and Smits said he also got along “extremely well” with the Scandinavia, Europe is not even close to reaching its tar- “hyper intelligent” next research commissioner Carlos get of spending 3 per cent of GDP on R&D. Moedas, even though Moedas is “completely different in “We are being marginalised on the global scene, and we style, background, education, everything” to Geoghegan- are marginalising ourselves by not investing enough and Quinn. “After four weeks he knew more of our policy than by not joining up,” he says. “This has to change. It cannot the average person in DG Research,” Smits says. continue.” Part of his role at Eindhoven, he says, will be to Running DG Research proved “extremely demand- do his “utmost to make sure that the Dutch are finally going ing”: “You don’t have an office next door where you to increase their spending and investments on science”. can pass the buck to. And don’t forget we are dealing Smits says he will not be involved in negotiating with with embryonic stem cell research, nuclear decommis- publishers on behalf of Eindhoven or other universities. sioning, climate change, relations with Nor will he lobby the Commission on Eindhoven’s behalf. ‘We are China, artificial intelligence, fraud cases, audits, the press. Every hour I had a meet- Instead, his role will be to realise the university’s plans for the future and help it to win more global recognition. marginalising ing where decisions needed to be taken More than anything else, he is looking forward to immediately on a whole range of topics.” working with young people with dreams, passion and few ourselves by But the job is also rewarding. Among responsibilities. “It’s a young, vibrant, dynamic univer- not investing his proudest achievements, Smits counts setting up the European Research Council sity,” he says. “It has so much to offer.” And so, of course, does Smits. enough.’ against initial pushback, “liberating €200 More to say? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Research Europe, 21 March 2019 comment 7 d e g e n & v a n g r i e t h u y s e n e a r m a 2 0 1 9 Research support should include working for academic freedom In 1784, the philosopher Immanuel Kant described Netherlands cancelled plans for a campus in Yantai after enlightenment as “freedom to make public use of one’s its academics and students voiced concerns over China’s reason in all matters”. In 1942, the sociologist of science attitude to academic freedom. Robert Merton contrasted science in Nazi Germany with Similar issues might occur whenever research collabo- what he saw as the four norms of ethical science: universal- ration takes place outside the democratic value system. ism, communalism, impartiality and organised scepticism. The challenge is to open up authoritarian science on one These values hold good to this day. But the idea and hand, and to protect science from authority on the other. practice of academic freedom and responsibility also There is more at stake than funding and citations. depend on the context in which research is done. And Trust in science is jeopardised if research abandons its that is changing fast. It includes the way that discover- ethics. An increasing number of academics are asking ies are made and attributed, with the individual giving whether new policies are bringing new problems. way to the team. Disciplinary boundaries are break- Meanwhile, a number of scientific and technological ing down and data is breaking free of its collectors. fields pose profound implications for society as a whole: Research value chains are opening up to a wide range of genome editing, climate change, artificial intelligence, knowledge producers and users, blending research and nanotechnology—the list continues to grow. science into a global pool of knowledge. Scientists are asked for their views on public debates Funders and employers expect tangible returns from and policy. This forces them to decide where to draw the researchers and universities—in terms of student educa- line between advice and advocacy. On issues from Brexit tional achievement, marketable products and processes, in the UK to the climate crisis worldwide, researchers are and scientific impact. Funding programmes are increas- asking themselves whether the line is in the right place ingly designed in the service of government policy, with and what positions their institutions should be taking. a view to delivering particular economic and societal These interacting trends demand new conceptions of impacts. This equates to a politicisation of research. academic freedom, responsibility and citizenship, and In Europe, this has led to more focus on openness, a new relationship between researchers, society, pol- networked knowledge, innovation and links to soci- icy and politics. This in turn requires new governance ety. In China, the emphasis is on the state setting structures and skills for maintaining and influencing the research agendas in a race for scientific leadership. development of research policy. The American system remains powerful and relatively Universities need to find a stronger voice for advocacy decentralised. Major emerging economies are setting and diplomacy for their research to stay credible, rel- their own agendas. evant and free. This should include lowering the barriers While researchers increasingly work in a single global between themselves and society, and between academic community, they still rely on and compete for funding at expertise and the wider peer community of those who a more local level. This landscape, of a globally connected use and understand research elsewhere. system with ideological, cultural and regulatory divides, This is where research managers and administrators increases complexity and challenges European research- come in. Their expertise is in managing interactions ers and universities. For instance, European researchers on behalf of academics and the academic enterprise. A see great opportunities for joint research projects with conversation about creating a broader role for research Chinese colleagues. Some universities have opened cam- management has barely begun. But research managers puses there, and others are planning to. have the know-how to manage the shifting But not all are comfortable working with the Chinese relationships between research and society. system; in 2018, the University of Groningen in the They can become advocates for research and ‘Universities Andrea Degen is the founder of the EUrelations diplomats linking academic institutions with each other, and with business, society, policy need to find research and innovation management agency, Zurich. and politics. This will require a transformation a stronger Marjolein Van Griethuysen is founder and director of of research managers’ roles in research devel- Global Scientific Business Innovations, The Hague. Both opment, with a view to supporting academic voice for are speaking at the European Association of Research Managers and Administrators 2019 conference held in freedom and engagement with society. Something to add? Email news advocacy and Bologna from 27 to 29 March. @researchresearch.com diplomacy.’
8 comment Research Europe, 21 March 2019 e a r m a 2 0 1 9 p e t e r h a r d i Conflicting goals make research funding less effective Those who devise, apply to and evaluate EU research fund- grant agreements, there were none from central or east- ing programmes know that there are written and unwritten ern Europe in the top 50. rules for including partners from the former communist These numbers do not prove that research funding member states of eastern Europe in research consortia. decisions have compromised the principle of meritocracy, Many applicants believe that having an eastern although they do not disprove it, either. They do, however, European partner on their proposal improves their underscore the fact that the EU’s efforts to use competi- chances of success. Evaluators also tend to view such tive research funding to promote social justice in research collaborations positively. and innovation has failed to decrease inequalities among This reflects the multiple aims of the Framework pro- member states. The figures for Horizon 2020 show that gramme. On the one hand, it is designed simply to fund central and eastern Europe are falling further behind. the best research teams with the best ideas to increase How might the funding system be improved? Are pro- the scientific competitiveness of the EU. On the other ject grants the right way to build networks and a more hand, it has the goal of building networks and collab- equal research system, or should other instruments be orations across the EU, to help countries with weaker used more? There are already EU financial instruments research systems catch up with the stronger. devoted to promoting academic network building and This relationship between scientific excellence and mobility, in the shape of the Erasmus+ programme network and capacity building is at the centre of many for student mobility and the Marie Skłodowska-Curie debates around EU research policy—not least about the Actions, which fund researcher mobility, including aims and form of Horizon Europe, the next Framework pro- exchanges of research and innovation staff. gramme set to run from 2021. The fear is that competitive There are also several funding instruments aimed at research funding schemes are still based on potentially promoting equality and social justice among member conflicting principles. Meritocracy, where scientific excel- states. These include the European Regional Development lence is the principal criterion for funding, is central. But Fund and the Cohesion Fund. So far, only part of the equal access and regional equality, where research funds ERDF has been used to support research and innovation. are a tool for convergence, are also important. Policymakers could do more to use these instruments I believe that EU research policy creates a conflict instead of project funding as a means of closing gaps in between scientific and political objectives. Furthermore, research strengths between member states. this conflict reduces its effectiveness. Gauging the suc- If these instruments are not sufficient, and decision- cess of research funding is hard. Evaluation processes are makers in the European Commission wish to continue controversial and still only partially developed. using research and innovation programmes to further We cannot yet tell whether funding targeted at sci- the goal of equality, they need to be ready to accept the entific excellence is making the EU a leader for research possibility of conflicts between different goals, and com- and innovation. But the goal of reducing inequalities in promise in the meritocratic aspect of funding decisions. research infrastructures and resources has certainly been In this case, funding calls and evaluation criteria should missed. The EU’s research landscape remains unequal, openly and transparently discuss the presence of differ- with central and eastern European countries lagging ent and potentially conflicting objectives. as recipients of EU funds. By the number of applicants, As well as the best way to support research, this is all countries in central and eastern Europe rank in the an issue of the most effective use of public funds. Do lowest quartile. In terms of winning potentially conflicting objectives within a financial research funds, none were in the top instrument—in this case research grants—reduce the ‘Are project half of the 28 member states. programme’s effectiveness? If the answer is yes, they grants the right For the Framework 7 programme, may not be the most appropriate tools for that purpose. which ran from 2007 to 2013, only More to say? Email email@example.com way to build Budapest (at number 43) and Warsaw (number 46) featured in the EU’s Peter Hardi is professor emeritus in the department of networks and top 50 regions for participation and economics and business at Central European University, a more equal funding. Counting institutional par- Budapest. He is speaking at the European Association of ticipation in the same programme, Research Managers and Administrators 2019 conference research system?’ measured as the number of signed held in Bologna from 27 to 29 March.
funding opportunities Research Europe 21 March 2019 every new opportunity every discipline highlights deadlines April europe EU telecommunications Opportunities from previous issues of Research Europe, listed by clos- 1 UK Association of European Opera- tional Research Societies general support grant 1167699 EU capitalisation call Interreg Central Europe invites proposals The Innovation and ing date. European Commission and UK British Academy Nayef Al- for its capitalisation call. This supports associated funders marked EU. Rodhan prize for global cultural proposals that will capitalise on promis- Networks Executive Each entry is followed by a Web id understanding 1189764 ing results of the currently funded 44 Agency invites EU ECORD – European Consortium for Ocean Research Drilling Interna- Interreg Central Europe projects. applications for its CEF- March tional Ocean Discovery Programme Web id: 1209469 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org expedition 388 – equatorial Atlantic TC-2019-2 Connecting 29 BEtors Conference of European Direc- of Roads transnational road gateway 1210718 EU Education, Audiovisual and Deadline: 5 July 2019  Europe Facility Telecom research programme 1188162 Culture Executive Agency Erasmus EU social innovation EU Directorate-General for Mobility call. The budget is worth and Transport programme support Mundus joint master degrees – joint The Directorate-General for Internal Mar- action under the Connecting Europe call EU-Japan 1209897 ket, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs €29 million . Facility transport to support member DE European Association for the invites applications for the European states in the development and Study of Diabetes EFSD/Novo Nord- social innovation competition. This stim- Nervous system prize deployment of European public trans- isk Foundation future leaders award ulates the potential of social innovation port data standards transmodel, net- programme 1211936 to solve societal challenges and foster The Lundbeck Foundation work timetable exchange and service EU European Centre for Disease sustainable growth in Europe. Awards are interface for real time information for Prevention and Control assessment invites nominations for the provision of EU-wide multimodal of new technologies for infectious worth €50,000 each. travel information services 1210720 Web id: 1169987 the brain prize, worth disease surveillance, prevention and control 1212837 Email: email@example.com EU Era-Net MarTERA joint call on Deadline: 4 April 2019  €1 million . marine technologies 1190864 EU European Global Navigation EU European Maritime Safety Agency Satellite Systems Agency enhanced EU trade laws Rare subjects study of the risks and regulatory receiver for autonomous driving or navigation 1203896 The Directorate-General for Internal issues of specific cases of maritime The Volkswagen Foundation autonomous surface ships 1212570 CH European Respiratory Society Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and UK Institute of Historical Research international short-term fellowship SMEs invites tenders for a study on the invites applications for its Pearsall fellowship in naval and 1188802 transposition of directive EU 2015/2436 call on world knowledge – maritime history 211538 CH European Respiratory Society on trade marks. The tenderer will assess JP Japan Foundation awards short-term fellowship in memory of transposition of the directive by member structural support for rare 1206200 Dr Valia Kechagia 1203520 states to approximate the laws. The con- subjects. Grants are worth TR Scientific and Technological CH European Respiratory Society tract is worth €250,000 over three years. Research Council of Turkey (TÜBITAK) standard short-term fellowship Web id: 1213191 up to €1.01 million . international fellowship for outstand- 212908 Email: grow-dir-f-financial-team@ ing researchers programme 1212294 CH European Respiratory Society/ ec.europa.eu Human rights fellowship UK Scottish Government evaluation European Molecular Biology Organi- Deadline: 17 April 2019  of the health and work support pilot sation joint short-term fellowship Front Line invites 1212782 in respiratory science and molecular EU blue economy biology 1188804 applications for the Frank Jennings fellowship, 31 DE European Association of Social Psychology collaborative research grants 1210792 BE European Society of Veterinary Dermatologists research grants The Executive Agency for Small and Medi- um-sized Enterprises invites tenders for 209592 design and implementation of a blue UK European Society for Evolution- worth up to €1,400 per ary Biology special topic networks FR Foundation for the Memory economy development framework. The of the Shoah postdoctoral and tenderer will study the Paris Climate month . 1194836 doctoral grants 1211199 Agreement and the United Nations 2030 DE Forum Vergabe international Agenda for Sustainable Development. The public procurement award 1163747 FR Foundation for the Memory EU peptide modelling of the Shoah research and travel contract is worth €550,000. DE German Literature Archive grants 1202060 Web id: 1213308 The European Food Safety Marbach Cotta scholarship 1207413 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org DE German Academic Exchange Authority invites tenders UK International Association Service (DAAD) short-term research Deadline: 19 April 2019  for Dental Research/Philips Oral grants for PhD students, postdoctoral for human leukocyte Healthcare young investigator research grant 1190963 researchers and young academics from EU retail study Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Switzer- antigen DQ peptide EU Interreg Mediterranean call for land and the Netherlands 1184487 The Directorate-General for Internal Mar- knowledge providers from cultural ket, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs modelling software. The and creative industries and creative DE German Academic Exchange invites tenders for a study on territorial Service re-invitation programme supply constraints in the EU retail sector. contract is worth €150,000 community spaces 1211045 for Denmark, Finland and Sweden The tenderer will provide data on the UK Laboratory Animals Limited 1184458 over 54 months . bursaries – up to £5,000 1188070 DE German Academic Exchange scale of territorial supply constraints and measure the effects of territorial supply UK Laboratory Animals Limited large Service research stays for university Research in Switzerland bursaries – over £5,000 1188071 academics and scientists 1179101 constraints. The contract is worth up to €310,000 over 10 months. The Swiss National Web id: 1213159 Science Foundation Online Funding Search Email: email@example.com Deadline: 26 April 2019  invites applications for For full details of every funding opportunity, visit EU military capabilities its promoting women www.ResearchProfessional.com The European Defence Agency invites in academia (PRIMA) Online subscribers can view full details of any funding opportunity by tenders for a framework contract for the simply searching for the Web id number as free text in a funding search. provision of permanent monitoring and grants . analysis of military capabilities services. The contract is worth €1 million over NOT TO BE Funding search 48 months. Web id: 1213305 PHOTOCOPIED Free text: 1234567 x Search Email: firstname.lastname@example.org For subscriptions call +44 20 7216 6500 Deadline: 7 May 2019 
10 funding opportunities Research Europe, 21 March 2019 EU telecommunications 1 sustainable development regarding food Cardiovascular research promote sustainable consumption The Innovation and Networks Executive in the public sector. Grants are worth up The European Society of Cardiology and production. The prize is worth Agency invites applications for its CEF- to DKK 600,000 (€8,400). invites applications for its basic research DKK 350,000 (€46,900). TC-2019-1 Connecting Europe Facility Tel- Web id: 1213360 fellowship. This enables a researcher to Web id: 196595 ecom call. This supports economic growth Email: email@example.com spend one year in a European laboratory, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org and the completion of the internal mar- Deadline: 1 May 2019  working on a project in cardiovascular Deadline: 15 May 2019  ket. The budget is worth €19.2 million. sciences. The fellowship is worth €25,000. Web id: 1212750 Biomedical science Web id: 1174474 Human rights fellowship Deadline: 14 May 2019  The Lundbeck Foundation invites appli- Email: email@example.com Front Line invites applications for the cations for its ascending investigators Deadline: 1 December 2019  Frank Jennings fellowship. This ena- EU digital archives programme. This supports biomedical bles individuals to work for the human The Innovation and Networks Execu- scientists in conducting research at Dan- Science communication rights defenders in an international non- tive Agency together with the European ish non-commercial research institutions. The Volkswagen Foundation invites appli- governmental organisation, and at the Commission, invites proposals for its Grants are worth up to DKK 5 million cations for its science communication and office of the UN High Commissioner for CEF-TC-2019-3 Connecting Europe Facil- (€670,100) each over four years. knowledge transfer grants. These enable human rights. The fellowship is worth up ity Telecom call on eArchiving. This sup- Web id: 1208990 current applicants or already funded to €1,400 per month. ports digital infrastructures to achieve Email: firstname.lastname@example.org grant holders to make science more com- Web id: 1165031 eArchiving solutions. The budget is worth Deadline: 3 May 2019  prehensible to the public. Email: email@example.com €2.1 million. Web id: 1212918 Deadline: 13 July 2019  Web id: 1213024 Nordic prize pharmacology Email: danisman@ Email: firstname.lastname@example.org The Basic and Clinical Pharmacology and volkswagenstiftung.de EU peptide modelling Deadline: 14 May 2019  Toxicology Journal invites nominations No deadline  The European Food Safety Authority for its Nordic prize in basic and clinical invites tenders for human leukocyte anti- EU advanced computing pharmacology and toxicology. This recog- Social psychology awards gen DQ peptide modelling software. The The Partnership for Advancing Computing nises scientists who have promoted these The European Association of Social tenderer will develop a software tool for in Europe invites applications for its pre- disciplines. The prize is worth €10,000. Psychology invites applications for its peptide modelling. The contract is worth paratory access for type C and D projects. Web id: 1205746 seedcorn research grants. These enable €150,000 over 54 months. This offers access to high performance Email: email@example.com researchers to develop new projects, Web id: 1213100 computing facilities to optimise, scale Deadline: 1 August 2019  particularly preliminary research. Grants Email: firstname.lastname@example.org and test codes. are worth up to €3,000. Deadline: 8 April 2019  Web id: 1193262 Nervous system prize Web id: 250960 Email: email@example.com The Lundbeck Foundation invites nomina- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org EU supercomputers Deadline: 3 June 2019  tions for the brain prize. This recognises Deadline: 31 March 2019  The EuroHPC Joint Undertaking invites advancement in research on the nervous expressions of interest for its EUROHPC- Science networking system. The prize is worth €1 million. Innovation grants 2019-CEI-PE-01 call for hosting entities The European Cooperation in Science and Web id: 1159273 The Volkswagen Foundation invites appli- for precursors to exascale supercomput- Technology (COST) invites proposals for Email: thebrainprize@ cations for its experiment – in search of ers. The total budget is €250 million. its action call. This supports networking lundbeckfonden.com bold research ideas initiative. This sup- Web id: 1213183 activities in science and technology. Deadline: 1 September 2019  ports new research concepts in science, Email: email@example.com Web id: 200543 engineering, behavioural and life sci- Deadline: 4 April 2019  Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Cancer research ences. Grants are worth €120,000 each. Deadline: 5 September 2019  The Nordic Cancer Union invites propos- Web id: 1173981 EU supercomputers als for its research grants. These support Email: email@example.com EuroHPC Joint Undertaking invites applica- EU H2020 nuclear research cancer research in Nordic countries. Deadline: 10 July 2019  tions for its EUROHPC-2019-CEI-PT-01 call The European Commission Horizon 2020: Web id: 211908 for hosting entities for petascale super- Euratom, under the Euratom work pro- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Rare subjects computers. The budget is €250 million. gramme, invites proposals for its nuclear Deadline: 2 September 2019  The Volkswagen Foundation invites appli- Web id: 1213185 fission, fusion and radiation protection cations for its call on world knowledge Email: email@example.com research call. This supports projects Culture and language – structural support for rare subjects. This Deadline: 15 April 2019  that develop nuclear research and train- The Nordic Council of Ministers invites supports projects that develop international ing activities. Grants are worth up to applications for its Volt programme. This networks or innovative measures of com- Threatened PhDs €18 million. aims to make young people in the Nordic munication between researchers and the The International Migration, Integration Web id: 1211643 region interested in the languages, art public. Grants are worth up to €1.01 million. and Social Cohesion Europe invites appli- Deadline: 25 September 2019  and cultures of other Nordic countries. Web id: 1203143 cations for solidarity grants for threat- Grants are worth up to €70,000. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org ened PhDs. These support academics who EU telecommunications 2 Web id: 1200057 Deadline: 16 September 2019  are threatened by repressive measures The Innovation and Networks Execu- Email: turid.johannessen@ by their governments. Grants worth up tive Agency invites applications for its nordiskkulturkontakt.org Humanities innovation to €2,000 each. CEF-TC-2019-2 Connecting Europe Facil- Deadline: 12 August 2019  The Volkswagen Foundation invites appli- Web id: 1207785 ity Telecom call. This supports economic cations for its Original, isn’t it? – new Email: email@example.com growth and the completion of the internal Cardiology award options for the humanities and cultural No deadline  market. The budget is worth €29 million. The European Society of Cardiology invites studies call. This encourages scholars to Web id: 1212767 applications for its outstanding achieve- embark on original projects. Grants are EU international culture Deadline: 14 November 2019  ment award. This recognises achieve- worth up to €200,000. JPI Cultural Heritage and Global Change ments by basic cardiology researchers in Web id: 1182471 invites proposals for its conservation and Arctic clustering the early stages of their careers. Prizes Email: firstname.lastname@example.org protection call. This supports research The Northern Periphery and Arctic Pro- are worth €3,000 each. Deadline: 13 November 2019  into strategies to safeguard cultural herit- gramme, in collaboration with other Web id: 251403 age. The budget is worth €6.96 million. funders, invites applications for its Arctic Email: email@example.com EU energy sector Web id: 1195151 project clustering call. This supports Deadline: 15 May 2019  The European Union Agency for Network Email: firstname.lastname@example.org projects from different cooperation pro- and Information invites tenders for sup- Deadline: 30 June 2019  grammes that address the same territo- EU ocean research porting activities for information security rial challenges. Grants are worth up to JPI Climate and JPI Oceans invite applica- in the energy sector. The contract is worth Arts and humanities prize €29,250. tions for their joint transnational call on up to €900,000. The Ludvig Holberg Memorial Fund invites Web id: 1210757 next generation climate science in Europe Web id: 1213354 nominations for the following oppor- Deadline: 30 April 2019  for oceans. This supports projects on Email: email@example.com tunities: climate science using observations and Deadline: 8 April 2019  •the Holberg prize, worth NOK 4.5 mil- Nordic food development Earth system models. The total budget is lion (€463,500). Web id: 258060 The Nordic Council of Ministers, under worth up to €8.1 million. Environmental sustainability •the Nils Klim prize, worth the New Nordic Food programme, invites Web id: 1211362 The Nordic Council of Ministers invites NOK 500,000. Web id: 206983 applications for sustainable development Email: firstname.lastname@example.org nominations for its environment prize. Email: email@example.com projects. This supports collaboration in Deadline: 14 June 2019  This recognises Nordic initiatives that Deadline: 15 June 2019 
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