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FP6: Integrating and Strengthening the European Research Area
(Work programme I, FP6)

Sub-programme of the specific programme Integrating and Strengthening the Foundations of the European Research Area : 'Analyses and Studies and Statistics and Indicators on Science and Technology' (ASSIST)

In order to fulfill some specific needs for the development of the European Research Area, a call for tender was announced. Under this call, more than 15 different studies were envisaged and published as prior information notice in Cordis (OJ S70/060826 - 9.4.2003).

The following calls for specific lots were published:

08.07.2003: Call for tender for three study lots (OJ 2003/S 128-114416 - closed )
ASSIST-2003-01: Regular collection of bibliometric indicators. (OJ 2005/S12-010825 - of 18.01.2005 awarded )
ASSIST-2003-02: Database of S&T data on Europe's leading research universities (OJ 2004/S 252-217201 of 29.12.2004 - cancelled )
ASSIST-2003-03: Analysis of university and public research institutions' patenting activity
(OJ 2004/S 252-217201 of 29.12.2004 - cancelled )

12.02.2004: Call for tender for five study lots (OJ 2004/S 30-026068 - closed )
ASSIST-2004-01 The internationalization of R&D strategies of firms and its impact (OJ 2005/S31-029420 of 12.02.2005 - cancelled )
ASSIST 2004-02 Bibliometric analysis of the science base - to identify new and emerging scientific trends and the countries involved in the science base and its use.
ASSIST-2004-03 The knowledge bases of knowledge-based industries.
(OJ 2004/S51-043304 of 12.03.2004 - cancelled )
ASSIST-2004-04 The impact of R&D on growth and employment. (OJ 2004/S51-043304 - of 12.03.2004 - cancelled )
ASSIST-2004-05 Typologies of regional innovation systems in Europe.

19.08.2004: Call for tender for one study lot (OJ 2004/S 161-139296 - closed )
ASSIST 2004-2-16: S&T Linkage Indicators (OJ 2005/S25-023470 of 04.02.2005 - awarded ).

28.08.2004: Call for tender for one study lot (OJ 2004/S 168 - 144559 - closed )
ASSIST 2004-2-17: Support with the preparation of indicators, analysis and statistical issues related to the conception and preparation of S&T indicators reports and for coordinating the development of S&T policies in Europe.

1.9.2004: Call for tender for one study lot (OJ 2004/S 170-145912 - closed )
ASSIST-2004-2-1: Highly cited patents, highly cited publications, and research networks. (OJ 2004/S239 - 205345 of 8.12.2004 - cancelled )

Throughout the prgramme's lifetime, further studies might be needed. In order to fulfill this demand, an expression of interest was published.
Call for expression of interest (Official journal 2003/S 128-114412 - deadline: 26th March 2006 )


Sub-programme of the specific programme Integrating and Strengthening the Foundations of the European Research Area : 'Support for the coherent development of policies '

Examining the design of reserach programmes (OJ 2004/S 149-128486 of 03.08.2004 - closed )

Private Sector interaction in the decision-making processes of public research (OJ 2004/S149-128486 - closed )

Benchmarking European Research Policies

The European Union has set itself a strategic goal to become the most competitive and dynamic knowledge-based economy in the world and announced new research policy for achieving this goal. For this purpose, the benchmarking of national research policies was launched in 2000 at the EU level. International benchmarking of national research policies is an instrument for increasing national performances through improved policy design and practices and to increase the coherence of European research efforts. Through being open to all actors in a cycle of collective self-assessment and improvement, benchmarking lies at the core of the open method of co-ordination of policies.

The benchmarking of national research policies covers four key themes in the field of R&D:

  • Human resources in R&D, including the attractiveness of S&T professions
  • Public and private investment in R&D
  • Scientific and technological productivity
  • The impact of R&D on economic competitiveness and employment.

Additionally, thematic work is being carried out on the issues of promotion of RTD culture and public understanding of science.

Benchmarking - methodology
Benchmarking - indicators

Mapping of Excellence in Economics

The “Mapping of Excellence” project was conceived as a means of achieving the European Commission’s objective of creating a European Research Area (ERA), with the aim of increasing the impact of research efforts by strengthening the coherence of research activities and policies in the European Union. It was recognised that excellence exists in practically all areas and disciplines in Europe but that these competencies are not always sufficiently well known across national borders, notably by companies.

At the Lisbon European Council, in March 2000, the project was endorsed as well as a set of concrete objectives and a timetable: a mapping methodology should be developed by the end of 2000 and the mapping of research and development excellence in all scientific disciplines in all Member States should be completed by the end of 2001.

The methodology, a “modulated indicators-based approach”, was developed and adopted in March 2001 Click here for the document 'How to map excellence...'. The methodology proposed specific usage of a wider range of indicators, such as bibliometric analysis, peer review, data available at the Commission level and structural data available in and from the Member States. The bibliometric analysis would constitute the core component of the approach. At the same time it became clear that it would not be feasible to map excellence in all scientific disciplines in all Member States by the agreed-upon date of the end of 2001. This is why the High Level Group of experts decided to limit the exercise to just three broad fields :

• life sciences (oriented towards basic research, where publications are the main output);
• nanotechnology (emerging key technology, where both scientific and technological outputs [patents] are important); and
• economics (social science), where possibly different indicators had to be taken on board.

The final report on Mapping of Excellence in Economics is here .
Equally available are the Mapping of Excellence in Nanotechnology and the Mapping of Excellence in the Life Sciences reports.

Last update: 14.02.2005

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