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Impact Analysis

Framework Contract for Impact Analysis

In January 2005 DG INFSO published a Call for Tenders for setting up a Framework Contract for Impact Analysis to provide a systematic, structured, coherent and rolling process of data collection and analysis of the impact of completed IST RTD projects. The Framework Contract aims at better understanding the impact of Community-supported research in IST in view of refining the Community strategy in this field and supporting decision making regarding IST research policy. The Call for Tenders - now closed - can be consulted at: Tender Notice for Framework Contract for Impact Analysis.

In September 2005 DG INFSO signed the Framework Contract with a consortium composed of Databank Consulting and Technopolis, with the participation of several subcontractors: Atlantis, Cefriel, Circa, Empirica, Icons, Idate, Merit, PLS Ramboll, VDI/VDE and Wiseguys. The duration of the Framework Contract is currently two years with the possibility of extension up to a maximum of three years.

The Framework Contract for Impact Analysis will allow the measurement and analysis of the impact of RTD projects in IST that are already completed, starting from FP5 . A first group of 10 domain studies was launched between December 2005 and September 2006. The domain studies will include the implementation of a questionnaire survey to project participants. For more information about the survey see letter to participants . ( PDF , 22KB)


1. Study on the impact of the IST Programme and its predecessors

In March 2003 a consortium led by IZET and including MTA and Archimedia was contracted to carry out the "Study of the impact of the IST Programme and its predecessor programmes Esprit IV, ACTS and TAP". The tender for the study was launched mid-2002 with the main objective of providing some input for the work of the 5 Year Assessment Panel, and the Final Report was submitted in May 2004.

The study is based mainly on the analysis of all documents available (final reports, TIPs, exploitation plans etc) for about 900 IST RTD projects funded under FP4 and FP5, with a specific focus on business and economic impact. The consultant applied a sophisticated methodology to position each project with the use of 25 indicators grouped in five categories and to identify 58 "high-impact projects". Though the study is mainly focused at project level, an attempt was also made to provide some conclusions at domain level, in particular in the area of "Microelectronics and microsystems" and "Language engineering".

Special attention was given to the analysis of business and economic impact. However, as a result of the methodology adopted, most of the information is limited to the expected impact at the end of the project rather than its actual impact. The study also addressed the use of reports and other documents available at the end of the project and the reporting needs in the context of ex-post impact analysis.

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2. Impact study

In August 2003 the Commission launched the tender for an "Impact Study". The contract for the "Impact Study" was signed in December with DATABANK and a final report was submitted in November 2004. The aim of this study is twofold: on the one hand it should develop a pragmatic methodology for the systematic impact analysis of all IST RTD activities. On the other hand it should allow testing of the methodology on three specific domains: "Microelectronics and microsystems", "eHealth" and "Mobile communications". The study is based mainly on the use of survey questionnaires and interviews with key stakeholders.

According to the study, the IST priority in FP5 and its predecessors in FP4 contributed substantially to the increase of the knowledge base, the skills of researchers and the development of research and knowledge networks in the Microelectronics and Microsystems, Mobile Communications and Health research areas, leading to enhanced competitiveness for most participant organisations. Knowledge and innovation benefits are considered by the participants of high strategic relevance, and in turn lead to innovation impact for user communities, both for project participants themselves (who exploit project results) and for industry and service sectors using ICT . The projects interact with a web of user communities in the sectors more closely related with their main activities. The patterns of interaction (which vary in intensity and type) seem best described as a network of research trajectories, pioneer experiences and innovation islands.

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