Servicio de Información Comunitario sobre Investigación y Desarrollo - CORDIS

FP7

INCONET-GCC2 Report Summary

Project reference: 609521
Funded under: FP7-INCO

Periodic Report Summary 1 - INCONET-GCC2 (Science, Technology and Innovation International Cooperation Network between EU and the Arab Gulf Countries aiming at the bi-regional coordination towards HORIZON2020)

Project Context and Objectives:
Summary description of project context and objectives

INCONET-GCC2 is a three year (2014-2017) project funded by European Commission – Directorate General for Research and Innovation – with a view to establish a “Science, Technology and Innovation International Cooperation Network between European Union and the Arab Gulf Countries aiming at the bi-regional coordination towards HORIZON2020”.

INCONET-GCC2 builds on the results of previous cooperation activities with the Arab Gulf Countries (INCONET-GCC 1st phase) while it focuses on selected societal challenges of mutual interest as identified during the previous collaboration, in particular on Smart Cities and Health/Diabetes.

INCONET-GCC2 explores how to achieve win-win across national, multidisciplinary and cross-sector approaches in response to these issues while also realising and underpinning new path breaking kinds of capacity-building and organising clustering activities around the selected research priorities.

Therefore, the INCONET-GCC2’s overall goals are to:
• support the institutional bi-regional policy dialogue in Science, Technology and Innovation by engaging the relevant STI stakeholders in both EU and GCC,
• strengthen the bi-regional cooperation between research and innovation actors, especially in the context of Horizon 2020 programme by encouraging an increased participation in H2020 and
• monitor progress in the bi-regional STI cooperation.

Project Results:
Since the beginning of the IncoNet GCC2 project a number of activities have been implemented in order to achieve its objectives:
To support the bi-regional policy dialogue the following have been organised:
Three thematic workshops involving R&D stakeholders from the EU MS&AC and GCC, one addressing the selected priority Health/Diabetes and two focusing on Smart Cities. The latter was organised within the framework of the 2015 International eGovernmental Forum, a major event in the Gulf region. During the events, representatives of the national STI administrations in the GCC together with representatives of research institutions from EU MS&AC highlighted the challenges linked to selected research priorities of mutual interest and proposed ways to advance the bi-regional dialogue in research.
Bilateral meetings on the margins of the three major events mentioned above between representatives of the EC Delegation in the Gulf region and the local high level stakeholders have taken place. The IncoNetGCC2 project was commanded for the success in facilitating the STI cooperation at higher level as well. Finally, a methodology and preparatory work has been done for the future organisation of a first high level platform meeting focusing on the two priorities “Diabetes” and “Smart Cities”.
A series of Information Days were organised in Bahrain, Kuwait, UAE, Oman and Yemen respectively during which the local scientific community, the NCPs and other relevant stakeholders have been informed and trained on how to participate in the H2020. Dedicated NCP trainings have been implemented on the margins of the Information Days.
A mobility/ grant scheme to facilitate the cooperation on the selected Societal Challenges among the researchers from both regions. The first phase of the mobility scheme facilitated the participation of researchers from GCC in the Innovation Summer School. A number of 8 grants have been awarded so far. The main goal of the mobility grants is to support the development of EU-GCC joint research proposals through the facilitation of researchers’ mobility - in particular mobility of young researchers and PhD students from the GCC involved with research relating to Smart Cities and Health/Diabetes.
To increase cooperation among the researchers from EU and GCC with a focus on the two selected priorities the following activities have been implemented:
The organisation of the first Innovation Summer School entitled “Collective Awareness Platforms for Smart Cities Development” with the objective of bringing together GCC researchers interested in cooperative EU-GCC projects with experts from the EU. The main goal was to create a synergistic environment where proposed cooperative projects can be discussed and refined.
Clustering meetings have been organised on the margins of events held in the GCC so far in particular on the HE Innovation and Energy/Smart Cities.
Intense preparatory work for the organisation of the first International Conference of the project is underway with meetings among the Coordinator and the local partners involved.
A strategy and a report on the engagement of target stakeholder’s group including the principles and an analysis of challenges for stakeholder engagement. The study also includes an extended list of stakeholders from GCC and EU countries active in the two thematic priorities of the project.
In order to increase the visibility of the project and to provide pertinent and updated information on the STI cooperation with the target region, a dedicated website for the project has been developed, in addition to a FB and twitter account/page. Continuous information updates are posted on all these communication channels.
Moreover, a communication and dissemination strategy is under finalisation. However, project visibility has been ensured at a number of international events and conferences in both EU and the GCC as described in the section 3 of this report.

Potential Impact:
The activities included in the IncoNet GCC2 project will have a direct positive impact on the cooperation with the targeted countries, at both policy making and operational/ implementation levels.

More specifically, at the policy making level, the IncoNet GCC2 is expected to: i) increase the knowledge on the STI landscape in the target region; ii) raise awareness and support for the bi-regional EU-GCC Policy Dialogue process;

At the operational/ implementation level the project is expected to increase GCC participation in H2020, through specific activities such as Information Days, training sessions for NCPs, a mobility scheme for young researchers etc. that will enhance the information dissemination and assistance, and will create awareness on the opportunities that exist for enhanced cooperation among researchers in EU and GCC.

List of Websites:
http://www.inconet-gcc.eu

Contact

Papatheodorou, Zinovia (LEAR - Head of contracts department)
Tel.: +30 2810391522
Fax: +30 2810 391555
E-mail
Record Number: 184152 / Last updated on: 2016-06-08
Information source: SESAM