EU aims to facilitate global teamwork in research and innovation

It will actively engage with partners who value the fair treatment of intellectual property and reciprocal access to R&I programmes

Photo: EU Mariya Gabriel.

Europe's strategy for global approach to research and innovation, was adopted by the EU executive. It underlines Europe’s aim to take a leading role in supporting international R&I partnerships, and to contribute towards making green, digital and healthy societies.

In line with its vision that excellent research needs the best minds from around the globe, the EU will facilitate global responses to global challenges, such as climate change or pandemics, respecting international rules and fundamental EU values and strengthening its open strategic autonomy.

Saying that openness has always been a cornerstone in EU’s cooperation with the rest of the world, EC Executive Vice-President for A Europe Fit for the Digital Age, Margrethe Vestager, commented that the response of Europe to the pandemic “has shown the benefits of more open science, of sharing data and results for the benefit of people in Europe and the rest of the world”.

This strategy will help us to create a global critical mass of research and innovation to help us find solutions to today's pressing global challenges, EVP Vestager opined.

Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, Mariya Gabriel, pointed out that to make sure that this openness works, and that researchers can cooperate across borders as easily as possible, “we do not only need support from major funders like the EU, but also a clear framework that creates a level playing field on issues like ethical and people-centred research, the fair treatment of intellectual property and reciprocal access to research programmes”.

We will actively engage with partners who share these values and principles, Commissioner Gabriel added.

The EU will work with international partners to create a common understanding on academic freedom, gender equality, research ethics, open science and evidence-based policymaking.

The new strategy aims for a research and innovation environment based on rules and values, and open by default, to help researchers and innovators around the world work together in multilateral partnerships and find solutions to global challenges.

Its objective is also to ensure reciprocity and a level-playing field in international cooperation in research and innovation.

The EU's global response to fight the coronavirus pandemic, including through multilateral platforms and Horizon 2020 projects, has shown how Europe can maximise access to scientific knowledge and international value chains when join forces.

The EU will support researchers and their organisations to help accelerate sustainable and inclusive development in low and middle-income countries, including through an ambitious ‘Africa initiative' under Horizon Europe, to strengthen cooperation with African countries.

The Commission plans to present guidelines on dealing with foreign interference targeting EU research organisations and higher education institutions. They will support EU organisations in safeguarding academic freedom, integrity and institutional autonomy.

The key tool for implementation of the strategy will be Horizon Europe, the current EU research and innovation framework programme 2021-2027, will be. As to safeguard the EU's strategic assets, interests, autonomy or security, the programme may exceptionally limit participation in its actions, always on duly justified cases, allowing the programme to remain open as a rule.

The association of non-EU countries to Horizon Europe will offer additional opportunities to participate to the overall programme with generally the same conditions as those of the EU countries.

The Commission will promote initiatives following a ‘Team Europe' approach, combining the efforts of the EU, the Member States and European financial institutions. Collaborations with other EU funding initiatives such as Global Europe, the instrument on neighbourhood, development and international cooperation, will contribute in this respect.


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