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Many of the conclusions of this synthesis report are fully consistent with the directions of current research policies. The work of this High Level Expert Group on the Future of Research Actors (RA) in the European Research Area (ERA) highlights the importance of efforts, already well underway, to reinforce the functioning of the ERA as an integrated base that overcomes a wide range of geographic, institutional and disciplinary barriers to both the competition and sharing of the knowledge. Knitting together the different European research actors into a more transparent and diversified whole would seem to be one of the best ways to create a stronger platform for knowledge creation and diffusion. A less anticipated conclusion, and less part of the existing consensus, is that simply pursuing the ambition of multiplying the number of effective research platforms in Europe may miss a key part of tomorrow’s research agenda. The in-depth expert papers on the eight different research actors of the ERA, the insights arising from the synthesis developed in this paper, and the analytical results of a rare scenario pooling exercise, all point very clearly to the risk that current policies are excessively technology-centric and may miss crucial emerging attributes of research and research actors in the knowledge society. Thus, over and above the value-added for assessing the direction and implementation of current approaches to improving the production and use of research in Europe, this report recommends new policies aimed at accelerating the development of emerging forms and sources of research. The policy message is that Europe must move beyond industrial-era challenges to embrace those of the knowledge society.

Additional information

Authors: No author stated, European Commission, DG Research, Brussels (BE)
Bibliographic Reference: EUR 22961 EN (2007), 58 pp. Free of charge
Availability: (Catalogue Number: KI-NA-22961-EN-C)
ISBN: ISBN: 978-92-79-06385-5
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