Coordinating energy research for a low carbon Europe
EERA supports High Level Group´s view on R&I strategic role for Europe´s future
The European Energy Research Alliance (EERA) welcomes the report “Investing in the European future we want” by the High Level Group chaired by Pascal Lamy. By calling for doubling the budget of the post-2020 EU research and innovation programme, and for prioritizing R&I at EU and national level (bringing back the target of 3% GDP spending), the report acknowledges the strategic role of research and innovation in shaping our economy and society.
EERA supports the positioning of the programme not as a stand-alone initiative but strategically linking education and training, research, innovation and as an instrument to align EU and national investments and mobilise citizens. We are pleased about the recommendations for further simplification of the programme´s administrative rules and for a review of the evaluation process, with resources invested to provide meaningful evaluation feedbacks to applicants. We support the call for synergies with other funding schemes and instruments, and advocate also for consistency and continuity of instruments over time.
EERA echoes the need, strongly highlighted in the report, to support an ecosystem for innovation to nurture Europe´s competitiveness and industry. At the same time – as the key player in European energy research, working in close collaboration with the industry – we advocate for a balanced support along the value chain. While recognizing the role of ERC as a lighthouse for excellent research, we believe that prominent resources should be targeted also to collaborative, excellent, cross-border research, through research-driven projects and more accompanying research in closer-to-market projects. Nurturing the whole research ecosystem is essential to keep Europe´s substantial knowledge assets and provide the “ammunitions” for European industry and competitiveness, not only for tomorrow but in 10/20 years alike. This is key particularly in fields such as energy, characterized by important investments and long innovation cycles.
EERA is committed to keep on working together with EU decision makers and other stakeholders and contributing to the debate to shaping the future EU research and innovation programme.