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Socio-economic Research - Dialogue Workshop

Socio-economic Research

Strengthening the dialogue between European research and the changing European society

The European Commission launched in year 2000 a series of 'dialogue workshops' with the objective of mobilising research in social sciences and humanities for the benefit of citizens, policymakers, non-governmental organisations and business. The workshops were launched within the framework of the Key Action 'Improving the socio-economic knowledge base of the 5th Framework Research Programme' and continue under the Priority 'Citizens and governance in a knowledge based society' of the 6th Framework Programme.

Aims of the dialogue workshops

The European Union is undergoing radical change in its social, economic, political, technological, demographic, cultural and institutional make-up. Changes range from the establishment of a common currency to the implementation of a European citizenship, from new family structures to new ways of working, from designing policies to better integrate migrants to increasing capacity to prevent and resolve conflicts. All this is taking place at a time when enlargement is changing the EU spatial boundaries and very identity, and Europe's role in global governance involves important responsibilities.

Research can play a constructive role in helping to understand these changes, by identifying opportunities and risks, and assessing the feasibility, acceptability and impact of different policy options. It is clear, however, that this part can only be played if research is open to those who are at the same time potential users of research, actors of change, and holders of important forms of practical knowledge. In other words, research should not only aim at communicating its results to the people outside the research system, but should listen to and learn from the experience and concerns of the various social actors or stakeholders.

Through the series of 'dialogue workshops' the European Commission intends to improve two-way communication - as opposed to the traditional one-way distribution of information - on a number of different but related issues with a view to supporting policy formulation and implementation, formulating research agendas or providing evidence and arguments for informed public debate.


The topics addressed in the Dialogue Workshops include those based on mature research, and topics of a more explanatory nature. The first relate to research supported under the Targeted Socio-Economic Research Programme under the 4th Framework Programme, as well as in ongoing projects supported within the Key Action on 'Improving the socio-economic knowledge base' of the 5th Framework programme. The more exploratory topics relate to emerging social, economic, institutional issues and potential research priorities for the European Union.


The 'Dialogue Workshops' take place in Brussels and involve between 30-70 participants from various disciplines and backgrounds. To ensure in-depth and productive discussion sessions, a limited number of places is available in addition to the invited speakers and participants.

The programmes and workshops are made available on the Commission's web page and on the current page by clicking each of the workshops outlined. Papers for discussion at the workshops are circulated ahead of the workshops themselves and the proceedings are published by the European Commission on paper and/or on electronically.


Workshops for the year 2003 include the following:

  1. Second Family and Welfare Cluster Dialogue Workshop , 31 January 2003
    Contact: (email removed)

  2. New dimensions of security and conflict resolution , 14 February 2003
    Contact: (email removed)

  3. Third Family and Welfare Cluster Workshop , 20 February 2003
    Contact: (email removed)

  4. Informal/Undeclared Work , 21 May 2003

  5. Youth and Gender - Trans-national Identities and Islamophobia Programme , 22-24 May 2003
    Contacts: (email removed) , (email removed)

Workshops for the year 2002 include the following:

  1. Migration and social integration of migrants , 28 January 2002
    Contact: (email removed)

  2. Social and psychological factors in conflict and its resolution: The Mid-Eastern and European Experience , co-organised by University of Tel Aviv and Al Quds University , 7-8 June 2002
    Contact: (email removed)

  3. The internationalisation of European SMEs: culture, entrepreneurship and competitiveness , 28 June 2002
    Contact: (email removed)

  4. Education and social exclusion , 26-27 September 2002
    Workshop Objectives - Workshop Report
    Contact: (email removed)

  5. Social Exclusion, Activation and Welfare , 11 October 2002
    Contact: (email removed)

  6. Financial Systems, Corporate Investment in Innovation and Venture Capital , 7-8 November 2002
    Contact: (email removed)

Workshops for the year 2001 include the following:

  1. Legitimacy, Democracy and the EU Committee System , 6 March 2001
    Contact: (email removed)

  2. Racism and Xenophobia: Key Issues, Mechanisms, and Policy Opportunities , Brussels, 5-6 April 2001
    Contact: (email removed) , (email removed)

  3. European Citizenship: beyond borders, across identities , 23-24 April 2001
    Contacts: (email removed) ; (email removed)

  4. Family and Welfare , 15-16 June 2001
    Contacts: (email removed) ; (email removed)

  5. Towards a common European legal culture , 22 June 2001
    Contacts: (email removed) ; (email removed)

  6. A European Dilemma: Punishment or Welfare Society , 26 October 2001
    - The Conference
    - The Glossary
    Contact: (email removed)

  7. Developments in European Services , 22-23 November 2001
    Contact: (email removed)

Workshops for the year 2000 include the following:

  1. Employment Funding : 17-18 January 2000,
    Contact: (email removed)
    For more information:

  2. Technology, Economic Integration and Social Cohesion : 22-23 May 2000

  3. Work and Welfare : 9-10 November 2000
    Contact: (email removed)

  4. Regional Dimensions of RTD Strategies : 24 November 2000
    Contact: (email removed)

  5. Global Trade and Globalising Society: Challenges for Governance, Economic Development and Sustainability : 14, 15 December 2000
    Contact: (email removed)

Related events

Independent of the dialogue series, a number of related events, conferences and workshops on research and society/policy making, are planned for the next year:

For further information:

Angela Liberatore
Research in social sciences and the humanities
Research DG
Fax: +32 2 299 4462
Email: (email removed)

For more information on the Research DG, and previous press releases, visit our Web site at

For more information on 'Improving the Socio-economic Knowledge Base', see /improving/

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