Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

FP7

PACE-NET PLUS Report Summary

Project ID: 609490
Funded under: FP7-INCO
Country: France

Final Report Summary - PACE-NET PLUS (Pacific Europe Network for Science, Technology and Innovation)

Executive Summary:
PACE-Net Plus is a project funded by the European Commission to support the institutional bi-regional policy dialogue in STI between the Pacific region and the European Union; strengthen the bi-regional cooperation between research and innovation actors, especially in the context of the Horizon 2020 programme; and monitor progress in the bi-regional STI cooperation.
Launched in September 2013, PACE-Net Plus brought together 16 members, from both regions. It supported the EU-Pacific policy dialogue in ST&I, by enabling a high level policy dialogue in ST&I among senior officials from the UE and the Pacific region, who discussed the priority research, development, and innovation issues in view of the interaction between the ST&I Community, EC directorates, the EU-external action services, and further funding organizations.
The project reinforced the EU-Pacific ST&I cooperation, focusing on 3 major societal challenges: 1) health, demographic change and wellbeing; 2) food security, sustainable agriculture, marine and maritime research and the bio-economy; and 3) climate action, resource use and efficiency, and raw materials. It encouraged the coordination between the EU ST&I programmes and policies targeting the Pacific by promoting the implementation of joint actions, and strengthened the Pacific-EU research cooperation partnerships, through the promotion of EC programmes, especially H2020, among the Pacific research community, as well as the Pacific opportunities for European researchers; and promoted the integration of the Pacific region and its interests into a number of EC roadmaps and actions;
The project also enhanced cooperation on innovation issues, by helping in bridging the gap between public and private sectors; it contributed to tackle societal challenges that EU-Pacific Countries are facing or that have a global character (see above), through: 1) understanding the factors, mechanisms and obstacles that underlie innovation processes in the Pacific Island Countries and Territories; 2) focusing on the role EU ST&I cooperation performs in the successful generation of new products and processes and of novel forms of collective organization; 3) Identifying policy recommendations that stimulate academic, private and public sector, non-governmental organizations and other relevant stakeholders both from the EU and the Pacific to engage and cooperate in innovation processes.
WP1, WP2 and WP3 benefitted from two major inputs for the state-of-the-art in EU-Pacific ST&I cooperation in the three thematic fields of the project: a Directory of Research capabilities in the Pacific and Bibliometric analyses of Pacific and European co-publications, finalised during the period under review. The identification of priority areas and policy recommendations in this field was also established through the development of no less than seven thematic Think-Tanks.
The one on ‘the observation systems of the climate change and its impact’ in June 2015 resulted in a "pilot project" proposal to the EU Parliament. PACE-Net Plus contributed to the overview of the Zika Virus research in EU Member States compiled by the EC, before a call on this virus was launched in 2016. Another main activity undertaken within WP2 led by CTA was an in-depth analysis of the innovation niches on food security, sustainable agriculture, maritime-marine research and the bio-economy.
Joint activities have been successfully implemented through a Seed-funding Call (D5.2). Of 65 expressions of interest received, 21 proposals have been successfully evaluated and 17 finally funded seed-funded projects. A various set of activities allowed the selection of research and potential innovation projects arising from WP1, WP2 and WP3. Further tasks included the elaboration of a list of potentially bankable projects, the dissemination of information and generation of awareness regarding innovation projects and processes in the region as well as of the role EU plays in supporting innovation in the Pacific and the elaboration of a series of policy recommendations for innovation in the Pacific.
All the project partners have been very active in supporting the bi-regional dialogue and were largely involved in the organisation of the policy dialogue platforms; each event helped in structuring this dialogue, defining a set of priority actions to strengthen a “EU-Pacific global partnership, through the optimisation of cooperation opportunities, and recognised the need to increase the visibility of areas of research in STI in need of support, within the political institutions of the South Pacific. To sustain this bi-regional dialogue, the project also aims to increase the understanding within Europe of the potential of the South Pacific nations.
A short documentary (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmW2b8PMx6M) and a Compendium of the project’s outcomes (http://plus.pacenet.eu/system/files/documents/PNP_Compendium.pdf) have been widely disseminated in Europe (at EC level but not only) as well as in the Pacific region. A new website has been developped, http://PACE-Net.plus/, that will continue to serve the Pacific (and PAC-EU) ST&I community after the conclusion of the project, in order to keep the outputs of the project visible and available for the near future.

Project Context and Objectives:
PACE-Net Plus context

PACE-Net Plus (PACE-Net Plus) takes place in the context of the last FP7 call for Activities of International Cooperation with an objective to prepare partners for the new EC Framework Programme, Horizon 2020. It takes into account the growing geostrategic importance of the Pacific-European Union (EU) relationship, which was recently underlined by the Communication from the Commission and the High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs “Towards a renewed EU-Pacific development Partnership” (Brussels, 23.3.12). The importance of enhancing EU’s profile in the region was highlighted by the 3166th Foreign Affairs EU Council meeting1 and it is has been equally found that the outlining the importance of the Pacific region to Europe requires continued efforts2. To do so, the specific development challenges faced by Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs) and the value of the Pacific region’s environment, peoples and cultures are crucial contextual elements to be taken into account for the strengthening of the cooperation between the EU and the Pacific region. At the same time, PACE-Net Plus represents an opportunity for PICTs and Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) to better address the ST&I focal areas that support regional development goals, to reinforce regional research capacities and networks and to better participate to bi-regional ST&I networks of global interest - as for instance, the observation of climate change - and, finally, to improve the regional cooperation and integration, as encouraged by the Pacific Plan 2005-2015.

Towards Horizon 2020
The approach of the new European Commission (EC)’s Framework Programme, Horizon 2020 (H2020), changes the scale and scope of the INCO-Net projects. Priorities set by the Program are all factors that will be considered in the activities implemented within PACE-Net Plus. H2020 particularly emphasizes that international cooperation in research and innovation will be encouraged to support the following objectives: Strengthening the Union’s excellence and attractiveness in research and innovation as well as its economic and industrial competitiveness; tackling societal challenges; supporting the Union’s external policies.

Tackling societal challenges through science, technology and innovation (ST&I) in the context of the Pacific region
Societal challenges are in essence global and comparable for all regions of the world, and in the Pacific region, some of them are exacerbated by the regional geographical and socio-economical particularities. In a context of economic difficulties and extreme remoteness, the role of science and technological development, as well as of innovation resulting from research, are of high importance to Pacific peoples and provide many opportunities for both European and Pacific researchers and innovators to collaborate.

Areas of vital importance, such as the management of terrestrial and marine resource exploitation in order to ensure sustainable development and food security within the context of climate change, and other major societal challenges such as maintaining health and nutrition, demographic changes and population ageing, are all crucial issues for the UE-Pacific cooperation at the policy and scientific levels, and underline the need for reinforced cooperation and a strengthened bi-regional dialogue in ST&I.

The heterogeneous ST&I landscape across the vast Pacific region, and the asymmetry between Pacific countries, compounded by differences of development and large distances, is a limiting factor for the enhancement of the level of cooperation between the EU and the Pacific. Improvement of Pacific countries’ capacities in ST&I is a key to tackle the challenges the region, is facing, but also an opportunity for European countries to move forward towards a balanced partnership with the Pacific, to develop collaborative activities of common interest and to reinforce their competitiveness in the region. On the other hand, strengthening Pacific research capacities and networks will encourage regional cooperation and integration, a priority fixed by the Pacific Island Forum (“Build strong partnerships between Member countries, Pacific territories, regional and international organisations and non-state organisations”, Pacific Plan, 2005).

Building on PACE-Net’s results
Although it will propose a renewed approach in line with the specific objectives of the INCO Work Programme 2013 and in the context of the forthcoming Horizon 2020 programme5, PACE-Net Plus will build on the results obtained by the ongoing INCO-Net targeting the Pacific region. PACE-Net has identified challenges and set up recommendations that will provide valuable guidelines for PACE-Net Plus. A mere continuation of the project is not the expected response, nevertheless PACE-Net Plus will exploit the outcomes of PACE-Net, seeking, on the one hand, to enhance and improve the impact of actions already implemented within PACE-Net and on the other hand, to launch a set of activities giving a new impetus to the ST&I cooperation between EU and the Pacific region.

PACE-Net Plus will in particular seek to integrate the EU strategy towards international cooperation in research and innovation linked to the aforementioned societal challenges and aim to strengthen the biregional cooperation in ST&I.

Using a range of investigative techniques and collaborative methods, it will deepen the work of identification of the thematic priorities in which scientific research, technology development and innovation should focus in order to better tackle the societal challenges addressed by the project.

It will also promote the coordination of the European ST&I initiatives targeting the Pacific region, in order to reach a more integrated external action of the EU and Member-States towards this region.

In order to address these thematic priorities, PACE-Net Plus will facilitate the mutual visibility and information exchange between the stakeholders from both regions likely to implement collaborative activities and pro-actively support the dialogue. It will encourage networking between of ST&I actors, as a means to foster and enhance cooperation between the two regions.

The guiding principle of PACE-Net Plus will be to find synergies and to foster cooperation in ST&I, for the benefit of both the EU and the Pacific region and, in the process, to contribute to supporting the Pacific countries with less capacities in ST&I in order to increase the critical mass of Pacific partners. Promoting a bi-regional high policy dialogue in ST&I, supporting the cooperation, encouraging the construction and implementation of collaborative activities between stakeholders of both regions are way of integrating the less developed countries into international networks, and to support the capacity-building in these countries.

PACE-Net Plus relies on a balanced consortium between Europe and Pacific partners, either national, regional or international entities, located in 15 different countries and OCTs. Institutions with a clear thematic expertise (including innovation) have been included in the consortium, in order to better address the societal challenges.

PACE-Net Plus main objectives

- Reinforcing the UE-Pacific ST&I cooperation, focusing on 3 major societal challenges (as justified above) in the field of health, demographic change and wellbeing; food security, sustainable agriculture, marine and maritime research and the bio-economy; and climate action, resource efficiency and raw materials.

Updating the state-of-the-art of the ST&I bi-regional cooperation (research programmes and projects linking the EU and the Pacific, stakeholders) will be one of the first expected results. This will offer a valuable basis to monitor progress of the bi-regional cooperation (including links with the Australian and New Zealand BILAT projects and the activities of DGDEV in the region). Finally, a continuous monitoring of activities, projects, scientific events, etc. involving both regions being implemented (watching activities) will serve to a mutual information of the research opportunities for the ST&I cooperation of the two regions.

PACE-Net Plus will contribute, with thematic workshops gathering key scientific experts, to update and precise the priority cooperation areas, identify opportunities for possible joint activities and innovation niches. They will also explore the linkages between the societal challenges and reinforce a multidisciplinary and integrated approach of the 3 thematic WPs. They will analyze the SSH aspects in order to better enlighten each societal challenge. One important outcome of these workshops will be policy briefs synthesizing crucial information for policy advice. The workshops will help finding ways to improve the coordination and enhancing synergy between the existing research and innovation cooperation initiatives of the EU and Member States & Associated Countries targeting the Pacific region. Based on the priorities and innovation niches identified in the previous tasks, joint activities (summer schools, joint calls, twinning and networking of labs, capacity-building for leaders for the future / scientists and/or policy-makers) will be promoted. A mobility fund (“knowledge exchange facilitator fund”) will enable selected researchers and innovation actors to network, with the objective of putting up common research projects and supporting the joint activities or initiatives. Finally, an assessment of the actions undertaken within each thematic WP will be implemented, in order to document best practices and gain knowledge on how to improve the coordination between the European initiatives in the Pacific and promote a more efficient bi-regional cooperation.

- Enhancing the cooperation on innovation issues and facilitating linkages between public and private sectors

In order to support cooperation on issues related to framework conditions for research and innovation with the view to establish a “level playing field” and facilitate the deployment of innovative products and services, a specific WP will be dedicated to “innovation as a cross-cutting approach”. Outputs from the workshops organized in the three WP will be processed and analysed in order to identify the best innovation niches within the 3 societal challenges addressed by PACE-Net Plus.

A mapping of the innovative competences in the Pacific will be elaborated. Existing policy instruments, tools, programmes and procedures will be mapped and past and present experiences related to innovation in the Pacific region and its cooperation with the EU will be analysed, as well as the difficulties, barriers and challenges that are facing the actors of the innovation chain: potentialities and vulnerabilities will be identified.

A guideline on “EU-Pacific cooperation on innovation” will be produced to share the best industrial innovation practices in PICTs countries, the best EU knowledge and technology transfer approaches to the PICTs, and identifying areas of common interest.

Workshop gathering stakeholders involved in the innovation chain within the two regions will be organised and will enable identify which innovation processes are the most feasible and suitable. A mobility fund will allow innovation actors meet and consider the opportunity of implementing innovative activities.

- Strengthening the Pacific-EU research cooperation partnerships, through the promotion of EC and MS&AC programmes, especially Horizon 2020, among the Pacific research community as well as the Pacific opportunities for European researchers.

A specific WP will be dedicated to supporting this objective. A whole set of activities will be deployed, including the identification and active watch on the Pacific opportunities for European researchers, a wide dissemination of information in both regions about the opportunities of cooperation, with a special focus on Horizon 2020 (notably through information days in both regions), the organization of dedicated events, and the support to the creation and development of a focal and national contact points network on H2020. As far as possible, these activities will be implemented in coordination with the Australian and New Zealand BILAT Projects, in order to maximize impact and rationalising resources. A mobility fund will be made available, through competitive calls, in order to create link between both ST&I communities and facilitate the setting up of joint activities and of collaborative projects.

- Supporting the bi-regional and policy dialogue in ST&I between the EU and the Pacific region

Since there is no specific S&T Forum in the Pacific region nor institutionalized regular meetings of high level representatives from both regions, organising bi-regional dialogue platforms is the best means to bring together key stakeholders from the EU and the Pacific: this will allow maintaining high level discussions focused on the priorities of the cooperation in S&T and crucially contribute to impulse a better tackling, through ST&I, of the societal challenges. Those platforms will help understanding and refining the specificities of the Pacific islands (weak density of the S&T tissue, specificities of the innovation processes, importance and consequences of development aid in the bi-regional cooperation, etc.), and will be central in structuring a cooperation dialogue between the EU and the Pacific. PACE-Net Plus will build on the recommendations that emerged from the platforms held in the framework of the previous project. One of the three platforms will be dedicated to the cooperation on innovation issues between the EU and the Pacific.

Contribution to the co-ordination of high quality research

There are many scientific cooperation initiatives – whether bilateral, bi-regional or multilateral – between Europe and the Pacific. However, attempts to coordinate these initiatives remain few in number. In order to reinforce the impact of these cooperation initiatives and their efficiency, it is necessary to avoid duplication and to 1) take stock of the various initiatives and 2) seek synergies between those initiatives. PACE-Net Plus will try to induce joint activities and foster the coordination between the initiatives implemented by the EU and the Member States, whether at the policy, programme and project level, in order to reduce fragmentation of effort and allow a greater efficiency of research policies targeting the region.

The European Union is often the only entry point of European countries in the Pacific through the cooperation led by the European Commission (EDF in particular). Yet, the Member States could fully benefit from research and innovation potential of this region. PACE-Net Plus will help raising the profile of the region among European countries not present in the region, while enhancing the action of countries which are already very invested there (France, UK in particular) through the following activities: promoting scientific exchanges, building of collaborative projects, stimulation of researchers networking, capacity building of National Contact Points (multipliers) in the Pacific, as well as awareness raising about research and innovation opportunities in the Pacific among the European scientific community.

The gap between research outcomes and their translation in terms of innovative technologies and services impedes the resolution of societal challenges. On the basis of cross-cutting thematic workshops bringing experts together, feasibility studies but also through policy recommendations, PACE-Net Plus will seek to bridge the gap between the public and the private sector, in order to contribute to the best innovation strategies. Innovation actors will be as far as possible involved in the project activities and will be key players in the identification of priorities and the definition of innovation niches. Innovation will be a crosscutting topic in all activities of PACE-Net Plus.

Finally, a better mutual understanding of the policies, strategies and instruments of national and regional research as well as the strengthening of a high level bi-regional dialogue will make it possible to prepare the ground for a more effective articulation of research policies in both regions and thus, contribute to the emergence of common priorities, the establishment of proactive research policies and appropriate funding mechanisms – a prerequisite to pursue quality scientific cooperation between the two regions and exploit the rich potential of the EU-Pacific relationship.
Project Results:
PACE-Net Plus main S & T results/foregrounds
PACE-Net Plus Recommendations for a Strategic Plan on Research, Innovation & Development in the Pacific 2
Background: Significance of the Pacific 2
EU-Pacific Collaboration in Horizon 2020 2
EU-H2020 Challenge: Health, demographic change and wellbeing 5
Pacific Priorities in Health: Tackling Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs): Lifestyle Options for Improved Nutrition and Well Being 5
Priorities and Suggested Action Plans 6
Pacific Priorities in Health: Infectious diseases in the Pacific 7
EU-H2020 challenge: Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine and maritime and inland water research, and the Bioeconomy 10
Pacific priorities within this challenge: Exploring the convergence of science and traditional knowledge in aqua- and agriculture for sustainable, healthy living in the 21st century 10
Aquaculture 10
Climate Resilient Agricultural Practices 11
Linking Island Microclimate, Water and Soil Management 12
Joint Initiatives: proposed EU-Pacific joint activities 12
Policy Recommendations at a Glance 13
Learning from Papua New Guinea 13
Coastal Ecosystem Disturbances, Fish and Shellfish Poisoning and Their Socio-Economic Implications 14
Introduction 14
Main Outcomes and Conclusions 14
EU-H2020 challenge: Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials 17
Pacific priorities within this challenge: Enhancing Community Resilience: Managing Environment, Water and Wastes under a Changing Climate 17
Climate change adaptation, mitigation technologies and processes 17
Waste, water, sanitation and water-borne diseases 18
Governance processes: resource management and power distribution 18
Data, observation and linked research 19
Policy recommendations 20
Reconciling mining and the sustainable development in the Pacific countries 21
Sub-topic 1: Enhancing environmental consideration in mining while answering societal needs 21
Sub-topic 2: Increasing knowledge of environmental and social impacts of deep-sea mining 22
Sub-topic 3: Mining industry and corporate social responsibility as a vector of societal innovation 22
Proposed joint activities 24
Observation systems of the climate change and its impact in the Pacific 25
Introduction 25
Guidance note 25
Outcomes Panel 1: Oceanography, ocean-atmosphere interactions and variability 26
Outcomes panel 2: Observing impacts of climate change on ecosystems and biodiversity, and on marine and terrestrial resources 26
Outcomes panel 3: Observing impacts of climate change on communities 26

PACE-Net Plus Recommendations for a Strategic Plan on Research, Innovation & Development in the Pacific
Background: Significance of the Pacific
The Pacific is known as a ‘sea of islands’ (less than 2% land), a constellation of small-scale countries which, in terms of research, can be considered as an environmental and societal “laboratory” of exceptional value. Instead of thinking of the Pacific region as just one of Small Island States, it can also be considered as one of “Large Ocean States”. This is an asset – not only is this region one with a high diversity of cultures and knowledge, a reservoir of biological resources with economic potential, making it a competitive arena for resource extraction and exploitation; but from a scientific point of view it also allows a variety of phenomenon to be observed and studied in ‘real time’ and ‘real size’. Yet, it is also constraint as the population of each country is too small to individually address all of their own research and policy issues and needs.
In the context of growing geostrategic importance of the Pacific-European Union (EU) relationship PACE-Net Plus was also a real opportunity for PICTs and OCTs . PACE-Net Plus facilitated cooperation around ST&I focal areas that support regional development goals, reinforcing regional research capacities and networks and better participating in bi-regional ST&I networks of global interest - such as the observation of climate change - and, last but not least, improving regional cooperation and integration, as encouraged by the Pacific Plan 2005-2015 .
EU-Pacific Collaboration in Horizon 2020
The EU Framework Programme (Horzion2020) particularly emphasizes that international cooperation in research and innovation will be encouraged to support the following objectives: strengthening the European Union’s excellence and attractiveness in research and innovation as well as its economic and industrial competitiveness; tackling societal challenges; supporting the European Union’s external policies
Societal challenges are global and comparable for all regions of the world even if in the Pacific region, some of them are exacerbated by the regional geographical and socio-economical particularities. In a context of economic challenges and extreme remoteness, the development of Science, Technology and Innovation (ST&I) is of high importance to Pacific peoples and can provide many opportunities for both European and Pacific researchers and innovators to collaborate. Thus, EU-Pacific ST&I collaboration can support the EU´s research and innovation excellence and economic competitiveness, as well as support EU´s external policies.
The project tackled societal challenges that EU-Pacific Countries are facing or that have a global character through: 1) understanding the factors, mechanisms and obstacles that underlie innovation processes in the Pacific Island Countries and Territories; 2) focusing on the role EU scientific and technological cooperation performs in the successful generation of new products and processes, and of novel forms of collective organization; 3) Identifying policy recommendations that stimulate academic, private/public sector, NGOs and other relevant stakeholders both from the EU and the Pacific to engage and cooperate in innovation processes and to support cooperation on issues related to framework conditions for research and innovation.
Four mechanisms were implemented by the PACE-Net Plus partners: H2020 information sessions, think tanks, seed funding, and policy dialogue. Each mechanism fulfilled a distinct function and in terms of fostering research partnerships, seed funding was viewed as extremely effective. Think tanks, as an evolution of earlier research prioritisation workshops can serve both policy and research partnerships. Diversity of incomes and capacities for research and innovation is a feature of the PAC region and therefore of the EU-PAC ST&I partnership. All mechanisms used to foster partnerships should be contextualised and recognise the need for complementary funding programmes to underpin a robust bi-regional relationship.
A first wave of think tanks were organised on 9-11 September 2014 in Bremen covering the three societal challenges. A common workshop methodology was developed and used to drive the objectives of the workshop/think tanks: identify priority research areas, innovation niches and possible joint initiatives. These workshops also fed the project policy recommendations and constituted the basis to the policy dialogue. (Cf.: http://pacenet.eu/events/pacenetplus-bremen-2014
The topics of the think tanks were chosen to combine themes of mutual interest for EU and the Pacific and/or themes of specific interest to the region; they privileged interdisciplinary and common transversal approaches, combining one or several societal challenges and also focused on innovation.
➢ Health (WP1): Non communicable diseases: Lifestyle/nutrition and wellbeing issues/use of ICTs for surveillance, remedying
➢ Food security and agriculture (WP2): Food security & nutrition, agric./aquaculture, traditional/modern agriculture
➢ Climate action/Natural resources (WP3) Enhancing community resilience: managing environment, water & wastes under a changing climate.
A second wave of think tanks took place in period 2 of the project, as follows:
➢ Health: Infectious diseases (Papeete, 26-28 November 2014) Cf.: http://pacenet.eu/events/pacenetplus-papeete-2014
➢ Food Security & marine and maritime research: Coastal ecosystem health (disturbances), fish and shellfish poisoning and their socio-economic implications (Noumea, 18-20 November 2014) Cf.: http://pacenet.eu/events/pacenetplus-noumea-2014
➢ Natural resources - Mining and its Environment (Auckland, 8-10 December, back to back with the first bi-regional platform). Cf.: http://pacenet.eu/events/thinktank-auckland-2014
➢ A last Think Tank on the “Observation systems of Climate change and its impacts in the South Pacific, for a sustainable management of resources and adaptation” was organized in June 2015 in Noumea, New Caledonia. Cf.: http://plus.pacenet.eu/events/pacific-observation-systems-2015/
The overall evaluation assessment on all Think Tanks showed positive impacts such as great networking opportunities, good working atmosphere, good opportunities for sharing ideas and bringing new ideas up, good mixture of participants (disciplines and regions), excellent facilitation, and increased knowledge of South Pacific on EU funding system.
In this context, a report on each thematic Think Tank outcomes was produced. On the basis of the joint activities that were proposed, a seed-funding scheme was launched in period 2 of the project. PACE-Net´s key stakeholders’ policy recommendations on how to tackle the societal challenges addressed by the project also follow in this document. These important science and policy advice tools synthesise the outcomes of a number of specialists’ expertise, which are crucial for prioritisation of future research.

Think tank on agriculture & innovation, PNG @Unitech Think tank on Observation systems, Noumea@IRD

Think tank on Mining & environment, Auckland @IRD PACE-NET+ Conference & Think tanks in Bremen @ZMT

EU-H2020 Challenge: Health, demographic change and wellbeing

Pacific Priorities in Health: Tackling Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs): Lifestyle Options for Improved Nutrition and Well Being
Under the framework of the Pacific-Europe Network for Science, Technology and Innovation (ST&I) project (PACE-Net Plus) which supports EU-Pacific cooperation and policy dialogue for addressing major societal challenges, namely, health, food and nutrition security, climate change and the environment, a networking conference took place from 9-11 September 2014 in Bremen, Germany. The conference, organized in parallel Think-Tank sessions, focused on the following areas:
1) Tackling Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs): Lifestyle options for improved nutrition and well-being;
2) Exploring the convergence of science and traditional knowledge in aqua- and agriculture for sustainable, healthy living in the 21st century; and
3) Enhancing community resilience: managing environment, water and wastes under a changing climate.
This report focuses on outcomes of the in-depth deliberations of Think Thank 1 where the 32 participants representing different types of organizations (government, research, policy, non-government and civil society) sought to analyze the situation on current cooperation on the topic “Tackling Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs): Lifestyle options for improved nutrition and well-being” addressing the Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) Crisis in Europe and the Pacific, the key challenges and the solutions.

NCDs are recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the currently leading cause of death in the world. More than 80% of all deaths due to NCDs happen in low-to-middle-income countries, including in the Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs), where the prevalence rates of diabetes, for example, as well as the number of non-diagnosed NCDs are among the highest in the world.
Through interactive plenary and inter-disciplinary working group sessions, the participants explored how progress might be made in understanding, addressing and preventing NCDs in the region and how surveillance can be improved through greater use of ICTs. Preliminary ideas for joint initiatives in these innovation niches and priority areas were also developed. The policy recommendations will feed directly into the bi-regional EU-Pacific high-level policy dialogue platform scheduled for Auckland in December 2014 and in guiding future joint action in the EU and Pacific regions.
There is a complexity of different realities in terms of public health policies, major health problems, as well as initiatives across the (South) Pacific region meaning that one-size-fits-all approaches are unlikely to be successful.
➢ There is strong interest from both the Pacific and the EU in research collaboration, and the first step is a real understanding on the current situation to make communication and cooperation happen.
➢ Some ‘Strengths’ may also be ‘Weaknesses’ among Pacific countries region: small size will mean that novel policies could be implemented quickly, but international trade policies might be difficult to change.
➢ Lack of resources (money, human resources, links between sectors, and evaluation and surveillance) seems to be one of the biggest concerns in terms of weaknesses, along with associated lack of political power in the global food marketplace.
➢ Main challenges include turning policies into real actions; achieving multi-sectoral cooperation targeting specific needs of different countries; engaging and mobilizing local communities; and better communication between stakeholders.

Priorities and Suggested Action Plans
➢ Food Policy
➢ Critical approach to improve diets in Pacific Islands Countries and Territories -PICTs (NCDs, double burden nutrition, food security)
Issues include:
➢ Trade agreements and their impacts
➢ Evidence for action
➢ Impact assessment/monitoring and evaluation
➢ Approach options including taxation, standards, settings-based policies
➢ Pacific islands can develop globally relevant evidence base
➢ Action plans proposed:
➢ Health impact assessment of trade agreements and cross-sectoral policies
➢ Developing evidence base for key food policy interventions, through strong M&E and targeted research, with complementary support for action
➢ Developing public health advocacy institute for the Pacific (focal areas to includes food policy

Community informed and led action
➢ Community-based NCD intervention studies are lagging, yet urgently required
➢ Prevention and treatment via primary health care
➢ Build on existing structures and traditional systems
➢ Action plans proposed:
➢ Strengthening civil society organizations

Research
➢ Better harmonization of research priorities and cooperation
➢ Improved accessibility of research opportunities and findings
➢ Turning research into action and holding policy makers accountable
➢ Social determinants of health and attitudes towards health
Action plans proposed:
➢ Stronger focus and resource allocation towards NCD related research
➢ Greater two-way knowledge transfer
➢ Culturally appropriate and national prioritized research
➢ Build research capacity and dissemination within the EU and Pacific

Data and Surveillance
➢ Lots of activities – impact?
➢ Need more considered approach to policy development based on evidence and data
➢ Test policy innovations to improve the knowledge base of what works
➢ Improve quality of data across a range of domains (RF, COD, disease prevalence) – track progress
➢ Improve use and translation of data into powerful messages to drive policy and change
➢ Dashboards for mutual accountability
Action plans proposed:
➢ Build on existing structures, networks and plans
➢ Build a regional COD coding facility
➢ Create an ICT platform for improved access to NCD data and knowledge
➢ Build regional innovative accountability frameworks – support Monitoring Alliance for NCD Action (MANA)

Pacific Priorities in Health: Infectious diseases in the Pacific
Infectious diseases are major public health issues in the Pacific. The situations are different depending on the countries but, as summarized below, the factors that contribute to the emergence or persistence of infectious diseases are similar:
1. Tropical environments: Pacific islands host several mosquito species which are potential vectors for several diseases
2. Poverty and poor sanitation: the lack of water supply, people living in overcrowded homes, the lack of waste management create a context prone to infectious diseases transmission/expansion
3. Lack of workforce skills causes difficulties in investigating and managing outbreaks
4. Global emergence of infectious diseases increase the risk for more pathogens to be introduced into the Pacific
5. The increase in regional and international travelling contributes to the introduction and distribution of infectious pathogens
6. Natural disasters (floods, typhoons, earthquakes, tsunami) contribute to the proliferation of diseases vectors/reservoirs and create more poverty
The global objective of the think tank in Tahiti was to share experience, expertise, knowledge and ideas to define “how to address the issues of emerging infectious diseases in the Pacific” and “how Europe and the Pacific can get a mutual benefit in cooperating to address these issues”.
The outcomes of the state of the art of infectious diseases in the Pacific allowed identifying the main challenges as defined by the weaknesses and strengths balance:

1. Diagnosis
➢ Improve/develop diagnostic tools
➢ Implement specific diagnosis on-site
➢ Train/accredit/recognize laboratory staff
2. Public Health Policy
➢ Improve/implement decision trees
➢ Monitor/implement/develop public health programs (vaccine/surveillance/control)
➢ Obtain community compliance/commitment
3. Data, expertise, knowledge
➢ Collect/share baseline data on the drivers of infectious diseases emergence/persistence
➢ Share expertise and provide capacity building
➢ Evaluate the public health/economical/social burden of infectious diseases
4. External technical support
➢ Extend the use/develop new tools for fast/cheap shipment of specimens to reference labs
Another outcome of the workshop was the identification of the “main drivers” for more efficient surveillance, management and control of infectious diseases in the Pacific:
The questioning related to infectious diseases in the Pacific fit into 6 major axes:
➢ Academic fundamental research
➢ Academic applied research
➢ R&D
➢ Diagnosis
➢ Public health
➢ Field data/specimens
The main interest of the Pacific regarding infectious diseases is actually Public Health. The main interests of the EU lie upon fundamental and applied research, and also R&D. Pacific and EU have different main interests but common needs:
➢ Diagnosis to get accurate clinical, biological, epidemiological data
➢ Field data
What do we need to make good research?
➢ Data on suspected and confirmed cases
➢ Clinical and biological specimens
➢ Field data and specimens
How to get more data and specimens?
➢ Develop diagnostic tools
➢ Implement clinical studies
➢ Conduct field work and pilot studies
➢ Conduct seroprevalence studies
➢ Challenge already existing models
Identification of “research topics on infectious diseases” that meet the following objectives:
➢ Get better prevention/surveillance/management/control of ID
➢ Get better knowledge on vectors/reservoirs/pathogen/pathogenesis and drivers of infectious diseases emergence/persistence
➢ Use the context of the Pacific as a model (as the epidemiology of emerging infectious diseases, EID, in Pacific islands is far less complex than in tropical continental countries)
Pathogen/human/(vectors/reservoirs) interactions, pathogenesis
➢ Survey on vectors and reservoirs of EID in the Pacific (characterization, competence, genetics)
➢ Pathogenesis, human genetics and memory immunity
➢ Genetics of pathogens
Diagnosis, surveillance and epidemiology
➢ Improvement/development of new diagnostic tools
➢ Phylogenetics, molecular epidemiology and distribution/expansion of ID
➢ Development of models and maps for better prediction and risk assessment
➢ Seroprevalence studies (past and future risks)
Environmental and social drivers of infectious diseases emergence/persistence
➢ Characterization of ID main drivers (climate - season, natural disasters; poor sanitation/hygiene; people mobility and travelling; specific occupations)
➢ Development of explicative/predictive models
➢ Identification of social/cultural/political/economical brakes to efficient PH program
Prevention, monitoring and control
➢ Development of vaccine, pilot studies and monitoring
➢ Monitoring of antibiotic treatments and resistance
➢ Implementation of innovative vector control strategies
➢ Models to monitor disease elimination programs

EU-H2020 challenge: Food security, sustainable agriculture and forestry, marine and maritime and inland water research, and the Bioeconomy

Pacific priorities within this challenge: Exploring the convergence of science and traditional knowledge in aqua- and agriculture for sustainable, healthy living in the 21st century
The main outcomes, conclusions, indicative future joint initiatives and policy recommendations are presented in this section. A situational analysis of the synergies between scientific advances and traditional approaches in agriculture and aquaculture research was undertaken in the context of changing climatic conditions and food security. This analysis was based on three keynote presentations and the past experiences of the participants to determine the strengths, weaknesses and societal challenges associated with the Think Tank theme. These were then clustered and prioritized according to areas of high importance.
In terms of strengths, the two priority clusters were: "social capital" of Pacific communities and "research avenues" (social and natural sciences) for better understanding the people and the environment in the South Pacific. With respect to weaknesses, the main clusters were: "divergence of interests and goals" (intra-Pacific and EU-Pacific) and "cultural incomprehension". In terms of challenges, the main clusters were: "ownership and rights" linked to intellectual property rights (patents, trademarks, etc.), land tenure and trade/aid laws, "policy and investments" and "traditional knowledge and cultural diversity". The drivers of and barriers to innovation and innovation niches in aquaculture, climate resilient agricultural practices and in linking island micro-climate, water and soil management were also identified. This guided the elaboration of the joint initiatives and policy recommendations stemming from the Think Tank discussions and group work.
Aquaculture
The Think Tank determined that aquaculture is not well developed in Pacific Island Countries and had not made a significant contribution to socio-economic development.
Several barriers to innovation were identified: (i) adoption of a "sheltered workshop" approach and "research" projects which offer little opportunity for stakeholder ownership of results, (ii) no clear pathway to commercialization and limited incentives for sustaining farming practices or conservation outcomes; (iii) general inertia of some "government" supported projects that produce few tangible results; (iv) the poor cadastral/tenure situation that makes it nearly impossible to find and secure viable areas to set up ponds and aquafarms; (v) low levels of education in rural areas and remoteness of communities which hinder communication and access to current information and available technologies. 7 D2.2a Workshop Report Think Tank 2: Exploring the convergence of science and traditional knowledge in aqua- and agriculture for sustainable, healthy living in the 21st century.
With respect to innovation drivers, recent developments, namely, (i) the expanding Chinese market, (ii) breakthroughs in feed science (including use of waste streams), (iii) dwindling tuna and other fish stocks, (iv) domestication of reef species and (v) fast population growth, were seen as game changers, and acknowledged as potential opportunities for innovation in the aquaculture sector.
Specific options identified for further consideration included: (i) capture-based aquaculture (good potential for 5 species at least), (ii) hatchery-based aquaculture (good potential for 6 species at least), and (iii) open water aquaculture. Referring to the need for considering other aquaculture species to foster development were suggested: sea cucumber (bêche-de-mer), tuna, tilapia, and algae, among others. Additional areas identified as new niches of innovation were: improvement of coordination efforts, and exploration of existing EU knowledge and technology in aquaculture with potential for generating high socio-economic impact and which can be adapted to conditions in the Pacific.
The prevailing impression was that the Pacific region is „ready‟ for new aquaculture business opportunities. The strong closeness to and knowledge of the sea can support aquaculture and its related activities, including urban aquaculture and aquaponics.
Policy for supporting future aquaculture development should address: (i) security of tenure and access to production sites, stock and feed availability, (ii) support for sustainable interventions and start-ups, (iii) provision of trained workforce, (iv) development of postharvest handling, processing and marketing capacity, (v) incentives for research and development and (vi) regional biosecurity. It was further noted that policies in Europe cannot be transferred directly to the Pacific given the differing cultural and political contexts.
The development of aquaculture needs an innovative, holistic approach that takes into account policy analysis and formulation, socio-economic factors and sustainable development needs, the health of aquatic ecosystems and the biosecurity framework in the Pacific region. A number of innovative project ideas and activities have been proposed by the participants. The proposed joint Initiatives in Annex ii provide comprehensive information.
Climate Resilient Agricultural Practices
Climate change is one of the direct causes affecting agriculture performance on Pacific Islands. Higher temperatures, sea level rise, salt water intrusion, more frequent and intense climatic events, etc. are formidable challenges with notable negative impact on crop yields. Decision support tools which combine and harmonize land and soil data, crop management 8 D2.2a Workshop Report Think Tank 2: Exploring the convergence of science and traditional knowledge in aqua- and agriculture for sustainable, healthy living in the 21st century practices and weather information services and which provide advice on crop/region suitability were seen as an important first step.
A number of issues/gaps were seen as priorities to be tackled: (i) too many projects lead to stakeholder confusion and dispersion of scarce human resource (teaching and research capacity); (ii) limited availability of consistent proof/data on impacts; (iii) no life-cycle analysis of food security and other agricultural development projects and introduced technologies is conducted; (iv) the governments' role and responsibilities are not clearly defined; (v) only limited knowledge is available on the potential of local crop varieties/species; (vi) micro-climatic, land cover and land use models need fine-tuning and should integrate the latest data from modern capture devices.
The following drivers of innovation have been identified: (i) biotechnology with a focus on plant genetic modification (genetically modified crops including climate resilient and biofortified crops); (ii) Pacific germplasm collections and international gene banks giving access to a range of indigenous and improved varieties and crop wild relatives; (iii) confidence in and acceptance of traditional knowledge of the environment and land management practices; and (iv) availability of proven technologies, mechanisms and capacities. The economic crisis in the region is creating a need to adapt and catch up with global developments and markets but this should not be at the expense of the traditional way-of-life and ancestral knowledge systems.
Some of the drivers of innovation were also considered potential barriers. Plant genetic modification was seen as a barrier because of public mistrust and limited information on the differences in traditional and modern breeding methods. Moreover, poor financial support and inadequate intellectual property regimes may hinder access to the technology. Dietary preferences, associated with culture and tradition can also hinder uptake of genetically modified or improved crop varieties. Limited information on the characteristics of locally available resilient crops for informing crop breeding programmes is another hindrance.
When identifying resilient crops and transferring technologies to land owners, decision support tools for crop management are crucial and therefore offer a new niche of innovation. This has already resulted in the formulation of joint initiatives in the use of low-cost ICT technologies and cloud-based information systems supporting climate resilient agricultural practices. In discussing economic independence and future growth in the Pacific region, developing intra-regional transport systems for locally produced food has been suggested as a niche area. Moreover, regional branding and the commercial promotion of a Pacific label should be strongly encouraged. 9 D2.2a Workshop Report Think Tank 2: Exploring the convergence of science and traditional knowledge in aqua- and agriculture for sustainable, healthy living in the 21st century
Linking Island Microclimate, Water and Soil Management
As a consequence of extreme and pressing environmental problems and because Pacific Islanders look at the environment in a holistic way, they have exhibited a strong will to actively engage in dialogue with various actors in identifying solutions for improving soil and water management. There is extensive scientific data and information available in the Pacific region and the capacities which exist for monitoring changes are considered good. However, the wide range of spoken languages and cultural interpretations of natural events is one of the most important barriers. Another concerns the capacity for research and education, which, though available, is often overstretched, reaching across the region and in many fields of study.
While there is extensive scientific data and information available, there is no comprehensive review of the relevant science and technologies that can be of use in the context of high environmental diversity that is the South Pacific. The limited availability of and access to quality science networks, as well as the low level of technology literacy, are barriers to innovation. Existing priority research areas such as disaster risk reduction may overshadow agricultural research efforts aimed at tackling problems of soil salinity and erosion for example.
Innovation niches exist for creating a dialogue platform that uses a common language for the scientific and end-user communities, and relies on people-centred, needs-based approaches to improve the uptake of technologies and the consolidation of local capacities. The use of innovative models for weather forecasting such as neuro-networks and artificial intelligence as well as the development of adaptive productive agrosystems that incorporate innovation in nutrient cycling and mulching should also be considered.

People in the Pacific confront the changes in their environment using a holistic approach: EU and Pacific scientific knowledge should be able to fit into this holistic world view in order to better inform on cyclical natural events and systemic interrelations that string together soil health, water quality and microclimate. This highlights the importance of innovation in people-to-science-to-people dialogue.
Joint Initiatives: proposed EU-Pacific joint activities
Several initiatives for future joint EU-Pacific activities were proposed. In order to respect and safeguard the extensive intellectual property generated and shared during the discussions, the detailed description of each initiative has been removed from this report. All initiatives 10 D2.2a Workshop Report Think Tank 2: Exploring the convergence of science and traditional knowledge in aqua- and agriculture for sustainable, healthy living in the 21st century have several guiding principles in common. It was understood that the legitimacy of a project leader is a crucial factor for success in any project conveying innovative processes. In addition, a "middle man" or "innovation broker" could play an important role in coordinating and communicating project activities between stakeholders. Furthermore, since innovative thinking is embedded in self-determination, there must be an enabling environment to support this process.
Other factors that could lead to successful projects were identified. In food production projects for example, constant quality control checks, adherence to safety standards and short supply chains were seen as strategic. Participants argued that short-term benefits and limited initial input are good at encouraging innovation, and that cooperation and ownership go hand in hand in the Pacific region when it comes to innovative processes and their adoption. Financial limitations often pose a barrier to initiatives that need scaling up and poor funding must be overcome one way or another. Access to land and other resources, including transport and distribution channels, their high cost, and sometimes the lack of trust between distant stakeholders have been recognized as imposing limitations to joint projects. The success of joint initiatives was seen to rely on the exploitation of short supply chains and of niches with a distinct comparative advantage in production/transformation capacity, natural resources availability, or label recognition.
Eight (8) different activities were presented by the participants. They are listed as follows, with additional descriptors provided in Annex ii:
➢ Measures of success – impact of science in designing successful policy for food security
➢ Use of genetic resources for traditional vegetable production
➢ PACE e-LINK – Pacific Europe e-Link Innovative Network Knowledge
➢ Ethno-botanical knowledge base
➢ Research Centre for Pacific Aquaculture
➢ Wastes as resources in adaptive/intensive agro-systems
➢ Converging traditional knowledge and science to develop terrestrial and marine organic food stuff pathways between the South Pacific and Europe for economic well-being
➢ Agriculture adaptation to climate change
Policy Recommendations at a Glance
➢ An enabling policy environment is critical
➢ The convergence of traditional knowledge and (western) science/knowledge can help solve challenges
➢ Agree upon and develop indicators with quantitative and qualitative/intangible dimensions
➢ There is need for genuine high-level commitment to EU-Pacific cooperation
➢ The challenge of transcultural language needs to be addressed
Learning from Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea (PNG) has several universities, research infrastructure and a nascent enabling policy environment; however, less than 0.1 % of government’s budget is invested in research and development. National patent applications are low. Through PACE-NET Plus, diverse stakeholders interacted during a PNG workshop on “Innovation and Agriculture: With a Focus on PNG”. Several issues emerged (i) the development and piloting of a National Science and Technology Policy; (ii) the intrinsic knowledge and ability of indigenous people to adapt to the changing environmental conditions which provide opportunities for research and innovation and (iii) the desire and willingness of the private sector to work with the academic and scientific community. These developments augur well for spurring scientific discovery and innovation in PNG and using this as a role model for the other less developed Island States.


Coastal Ecosystem Disturbances, Fish and Shellfish Poisoning and Their Socio-Economic Implications
Introduction
Under the framework of the Pacific-Europe Network for Science, Technology and Innovation (ST&I) project (PACE-Net Plus) which supports EU-Pacific cooperation and policy dialogue for addressing major societal challenges, namely, health, food and nutrition security, climate change and the environment, a Think-tank took place from 18 to 20 November 2014 at the Secretariat of the Pacific Community in Noumea. The Think-Tank focused on Coastal Ecosystem disturbances, fish and shellfish poisoning and their socio-economic implications.
This report describes the main outcomes of the Think-Thank where the 50 participants representing different types of organizations from Europe and Pacific regions (government, research, policy, non-government and civil society and private sector) sought to analyze the situation on current cooperation on the topic and to propose news ways for innovation and research, but also to explain why it is so important to improve cooperation between Europe and Pacific. One of the specificity of this think tank is that it was the first time that such an event was organized with participants from fisheries and public health. Usually, the topic is only addressed on one side: fisheries or public health but not both at same time.
The think tank was also supported by France with the French Pacific Fund and Australia with the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research showing all the importance of the challenge.

Indeed, the Pacific region represents an area of major strategic importance for the European Union and is of critical importance for global sustainability. The Pacific hosts a large percentage of global biodiversity and numerous cultures and languages spread across more than 33 million km2. The region's rich natural resources support major economic enterprises in agriculture, fishing, timber, tourism and trade, and invaluable subsistence activities strongly linked to Pacific people’s livelihoods and wellbeing. However, rising sea levels, pollution, and social and cultural changes are putting all of this at risk, with the impacts being felt both locally and globally.
In the Pacific, outbreaks of fish and shellfish poisoning have long been widespread, causing severe illness and even deaths, with detrimental effects to food security, local economies and traditional practices. With cases of seafood poisoning projected to increase due to the effects of increased population growth, climate change and other anthropogenic stressors on coastal ecosystems, there is a growing need to direct urgent and prioritised multi-disciplinary research into the issue.
At the Think Tank, the participants have discussed the latest knowledge and identified priority areas for future joint research and innovation to address the global challenges. Four key thematic areas have been identified for discussion during the Think Tank:
1. Marine toxins (covering taxonomy and diversity of toxin-causing species, bioaccumulation of the toxins in the foodweb, and ecological impacts on marine organisms and ecosystems);
2. The effects of climate change and environmental disturbances on fish and seafood poisoning (covering climatic and anthropogenic drivers of seafood poisoning);
3. Health (covering epidemiology, diagnosis and treatment (including traditional practices)); and
4. Societal, cultural and economic aspects (covering nutrition/ dietary aspects and changes, food security, changes to traditional behaviours, communication/ prevention and economic impacts).


Main Outcomes and Conclusions
Situation analysis
4 main categories of problems and gaps have been identified and only the topics with the highest priorities were kept
Data
• Poor quality and lack of data
• Gaps:
- Ability to predict when blooms will occur
- Understanding of climate change forces : ocean acidification
- Knowledge of species & locations affected
- Capacity in research and monitoring
Origins
• Mechanisms causing toxicity
• Interactions within BHAB communities physiology, allelopathy genetic factors
Impact on human
• Impact on health, subsistence, economic not well known
• No treatment for ciguatera fish poisoning victims
Tools
• Lack of diagnostic tools
• Lack of reliable detection tests
5 main categories of what works well until now have been identified
• Local knowledge is thought to be effective in identifying toxic species, seasons and locations
• Good general understanding of the CFP phenomenon
• Some ciguatoxins already identified
• Sampling protocols
• Some trainings on ciguatoxin extraction have already taken place
Research priorities and innovation
Based on the previous work, the participants have worked into groups to determine what should be the priorities for research and innovation to meet the problems and gaps. After a first step of brainstorming, prioritization was done by the group focusing on the highest priorities:
• Quantify/collect traditional knowledge using science to validate observations
• Curative treatments
• Epidemiology, clinical aspects & reporting
• Develop indicators/predictors of risk
• Standardized sampling protocols
• Remanence of CFP symptoms
• Fate of toxins in fish and shellfish : identifying toxins involved
• Analyse relationship between physical environment, marine ecosystem parameters, fish toxicity and health impacts
If the first part was more targeted to researchers, the second work was focused on innovation and links with private sector and policy makers. And the participants have highlighted the mains things to do as soon as possible as follows:
• Cost effective rapid detection test
• Integrated meta data-web portal or similar data sharing systems
• Sample/data bank of T cells from affected people
• HAB monitoring of deep sea mining sites
• Mass production of toxin standards
• Awareness tool for the public and resource managers & public health
• More synergies within countries between ministries of fisheries and health : cross disciplinary approach
• More communication between practitioners and local communities
• Develop a regional responsive network
• Annual report to help the decision makers
Joint Initiatives
Several initiatives for future joint EU-Pacific activities were proposed. In order to respect and safeguard the extensive intellectual property generated and shared during the discussions, the detailed description of each initiative has been removed from this report. All initiatives have several guiding principles in common. It was understood that the legitimacy of a project leader is a crucial factor for success in any project conveying innovative processes. In addition, a "middle man" or "innovation broker" could play an important role in coordinating and communicating project activities between stakeholders. Furthermore, since innovative thinking is embedded in self-determination, there must be an enabling environment to support this process.
Nine different project ideas were presented by the participants. They are listed as follows:
➢ Implementation of a functional method in ciguatera toxin detection in fine samples
➢ Regional HAB CFP data sharing project
➢ Physical biological + chemical characterization of HAB and non-HAB sites
➢ Monitoring HABs for Small Island States
➢ Regional workshop for building capacity of PICT fishers Offices in monitoring HABs
➢ Pilot Multidisciplinary approach Monitoring HAB program
➢ Regional (Pacific) Centre for HAB
➢ Regional review of CFP/HABs impacts CFP ecosystem health : shellfish poisoning/historical, farma kill, slomboroides
➢ Inventory of traditional knowledge


EU-H2020 challenge: Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials;

Pacific priorities within this challenge: Enhancing Community Resilience: Managing Environment, Water and Wastes under a Changing Climate
As part of the Think Tank, sustainable development was identified as the central goal and most important priority for the Pacific region. This is in light of a number of important characteristics of the region that were pointed out by participants and think-tank participants, which include:
➢ Strong (and growing) competition for scarce resources (e.g. water, land, fish)
➢ Small islands in large ocean expanses, with associated issues of extreme remoteness
➢ Fragile and diverse environments and cultures
➢ Extreme climate events
➢ High climate variability
➢ Variable population densities
➢ Polluted land and coastal waters
➢ Large waste loads
Climate change adaptation, mitigation technologies and processes
Climate change, and its impacts on Pacific Island and Territory communities, is one of the most pressing challenges for the Pacific as it adds an additional major burden on their ability to achieve sustainable development in a range of areas. Some of these areas, including biodiversity, health, agriculture and forestry, fisheries and aquaculture, and water, were investigated through a set of workshops and policy briefs in the PACE-Net Project, so were taken as the basis for further expansion of ideas in the Think Tank in order to not unnecessarily repeat previous work. Climate change is also one of the most commonly discussed challenges by Pacific leaders with their international counterparts, including the EU. For many Pacific Islands, adaptation to climate change impacts is the over-riding climate change priority, but others are attempting to lead the world by example to also provide evidence of how they can also play their part in implementing and promoting mitigation programs including renewable energy technologies. In this priority area, participants discussed a number of strengths of current and potential EU-Pacific cooperation including existing climate adaptation projects around land use and coastal protection systems. Key challenges and weaknesses related to climate change adaptation and mitigation practice in the Pacific and EU-Pacific cooperation in this area included that there is often a lack of local community involvement in projects with traditional knowledge and customary practices not adequately being taken into consideration that can subsequently result in project or technological failure (e.g. through lack of maintenance). Very bureaucratic project administration requirements (often of the EU or member states) and a lack of Pacific government policies have also been noted as significant barriers to the realisation and maintenance of climate change adaptation and mitigation activities, projects and technologies.
In terms of identifying innovation niches, participants suggested that besides the production of goods in the Pacific, there were opportunities for packaging development and other parts of the production (and recycling) chain to be developed from local resources which would mitigate energy used in transportation and fabrication (e.g. aluminium can recycling programs). A key area for innovation was around local knowledge inclusion and capacity building programs related to scientific expertise in all phases of project design and implementation. Potential for technological transfer and adaptation to local conditions to occur between EU and Pacific countries on renewable energy technologies, such as photo-voltaic cells or bio-fuel production, was also noted. For example with the latter there is potential for Pacific to EU transfer (e.g. algae-based fuels).

Waste, water, sanitation and water-borne diseases
Sustainable development and water security/sanitation are already identified as top priorities for the South Pacific in numerous Pacific policy documents including the Pacific Plan, Samoa SIDS conference declaration (Sept 2014)2 and the Oceania21 conference communiqué (July 2014)3. Waste management is less explicitly discussed, but commonly linked to challenges of pollution of terrestrial, freshwater and marine environments and subsequent effects on human health and well-being. As discussed in the PACE-Net Water Policy Brief4, the Pacific region is still struggling to meet the UN Millennium Development goals and instances of diarrheal diseases and associated infant mortality rates are great cause for concern in many Pacific Island countries. Groundwater supplies, which supply the majority of human needs in many Pacific island countries, are increasingly threatened, not only by pollution, but also salt-water intrusion and island over-topping from extreme weather events and climate change related sea-level rise. Participants in the think tank noted both positive and negative examples of attempts to improve water and waste management across the Pacific. For example, current strengths in the region (including with the support of the EU) include that some good tools have already been developed to improve outcomes in certain islands and there are increasingly useful discussions occurring on issues such as managing salt-water intrusion, thus lifting the “veil of invisibility” on these important but often not seen or well understood problems. However, participants reported that there is also still a tendency to keep developing “new” tools, which may in fact not be needed and/or new as knowledge on existing tools, projects and management successes/failures is so fragmented since different groups work in silos. Other key challenges and barriers preventing waste and water management improvements include inadapted or poor governance structures and politics (including unresolved tensions that are common between customary and current government practices and management mechanisms); a lack of money, resources and capability/capacity to manage the technical and social issues of water and waste management, as well as to respond to extreme climate events; a lack of genuine collaboration/partnerships; and a general lack of knowledge about the actual situation of waste, water and sanitation practice and management across the region. For example, current projections lack some key topics (e.g. water demand) and there is a strong need for more data (including basic hydrological data on rainfall and groundwater systems; quality measurements that could support basic research and local management.
In terms of innovation niches and opportunities in the area of waste, water and sanitation, there is a constant lack of appropriate technology deployed in many Pacific island countries. There is thus an important opportunity for EU-Pacific collaboration on innovations or appropriate technologies that carefully consider cultural differences between, and involve local communities in their development and deployment. Such culturally appropriate work during the planning and implementation a waste, water or sanitation project, has been found to be highly important for the success of Pacific projects. In order to further facilitate innovation, there is a possibility to involve the private sector, as long as private sector interests align with local ones. Other participants argued that knowledge transfer (e.g. technical knowledge) with capacity building programs with local communities and benefits sharing might be even more important than developing new innovations. Other niches that could foster important innovations are in the area of biogas production in the Pacific region; and the potential for fostering EU-Pacific knowledge exchange on integrated water management and waste management strategies. It was noted, however, that for some of these innovation niches to be exploited, legislation has to be in place to enable appropriate implementation, which in many cases is still lacking.
Governance processes: resource management and power distribution
Effective governance processes are vital for Pacific Islands to realise their sustainable development and community resilience objectives. This has already been pointed out in the previous two priority areas, along with a number of challenges, so will not be laboured here. However, a few other key challenges and resulting opportunities/ innovation niches were specifically investigated by the think tank participants which will be briefly outlined. Firstly, in many countries, there are still major problems of corruption and power inequities in governance processes, including those related to aid funding and who receives the maximum benefits. Coupled to this issue is the unequal distribution of all resources (not just financial), such as land, water and access to educational, training and job opportunities. In an EU-Pacific cooperation context, these issues can manifest themselves in a number of ways including certain sections of Pacific communities (or governments) not feeling that they have sufficient ownership over, or responsibility for, research and development projects or innovations. Part of this is due to a general perceived lack of effective communication between the EU and the Pacific. Opportunities exist therefore to include local communities, as well as other stakeholders, in all phases of project design and implementation developed with Europeans or others. Specifically, wider spread use of long-term projects with pre-funding mechanisms used for scoping and planning with local communities, which has already proved a very successful approach where it has been applied in the Pacific region, could help to build ownership of projects and ensure that the project has a good cultural “fit” in the community and is likely to succeed as design, implementation and maintenance phases progress. This approach might also help to overcome some of the challenges associated with very technical projects (often run by external consultants) that typically neglect important social and cultural aspects including community values. Another opportunity for innovation and effective outcomes is for pilot projects to be used to develop and test policies with stakeholders, including policy makers and community members, before they are enacted at national or Pacific regional levels.
Data, observation and linked research
Considering it is exceedingly difficult to manage what you cannot measure, collecting and making key data available to people working and researching in the Pacific region is vital. Data and observation systems do exist in some domains, yet some of the major challenges in this priority area relate to: who has the capacity to set up and maintain data collection systems in the Pacific; who owns the data; and who has the capacity to access and use the data for research purposes. Currently, internal capacity and motivation in many Pacific islands around data collection, interpretation and use in research is lacking and requires significant investment. Many external researchers (including those from the EU) are highly motivated to undertake research in the Pacific yet feedback and inclusion of local communities in these projects is not systematically undertaken, diminishing the Pacific islanders‟ understanding and ownership of the research and the opportunities existing for more equitable partnership and capacity building between the EU and the Pacific. This includes challenges in the global research community providing data and capacity building to Pacific islanders, as well as the opportunity for building the capacity of EU researchers to access and understand the local knowledge and traditional management systems of communities (i.e. in managing extreme weather events and adapting to larger disruptions to their way of life) thus improving the outcomes of their research and its potential application in the local Pacific context. Participants noted that this approach has been taken to some extent in socio-economic research on Pacific climate change impacts but that more work is needed, especially to further build local capacity in this area. Likewise, participants noted that too much ownership of data can create barriers to sharing data and achieving benefits for both local communities and other researchers or the global community (in the case of better understanding the climate system and the role of the Pacific region within it). Niches for innovation in this area could thus cover a variety of data sharing arrangements, MOUs and partnership projects linking local knowledge with other scientific knowledge. One identified opportunity could be in the extension of UNECE Aarhus Convention type principles for data accessibility and local Pacific participation in research and environmental decision-making. The other key linked opportunity is to enhance Pacific education systems to develop internal capacity in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) on top of socio-cultural knowledge required for effective sustainable develop and building of climate resilient communities.
From all of these areas and the central goal, the participants proposed a number of policy recommendations (to both EU and Pacific officials) as outlined below.

Policy recommendations
Noting the importance of:
➢ The Pacific ocean as a significant driver of global climate
➢ Recognising and maintaining biological and cultural diversity and value
➢ Securing community involvement in STI development (youth, traditional knowledge owners, etc.)
➢ Baseline data for decision-making and action, and its current lack thereof in the Pacific

The participants of Think Tank 3 recommended:
➢ Pacific protocols for data management, access and sharing be developed, drawing on lessons of EU protocol implementation
➢ Project pre-financing and seed-funding to develop effective project partnerships be encouraged
➢ Better coordination of research and development activities within PICTs and the region
➢ Taking advantage of policy learning to fast-track policy development and resulting sustainable development outcomes
➢ Pilot projects or experiments of processes and technologies to help develop effective wider policies and projects
➢ The Pacific approach to developing policy that maintains equity and community sharing is used
➢ Development of supporting policies for climate initiatives and technologies (e.g. REDD schemes, payments for ecosystem services)
➢ Increasing the visibility of Pacific importance for ST&I in Europe linked to global climate change, biodiversity and food security


Reconciling mining and the sustainable development in the Pacific countries
Under the framework of the Pacific-Europe Network for Science, Technology and Innovation project (PACE-Net Plus) which supports EU-Pacific cooperation and policy dialogue for addressing a number of major societal challenges, such as those related to “Climate action, Environment, Resource efficiency and Raw material”, a networking conference took place on 8-9 December 2014 in Auckland, New Zealand.

Key thematic areas were discussed during the think tank under three sub-topics:
1) Enhancing environmental consideration in mining while answering societal needs: covering biodiversity conservation and compensation, ecological services disturbance, sites restoration, other natural resources management – water, energy, farmlands...-, recycling of mining sub-products;
2) Increasing knowledge on deep sea mining environmental and social impacts: covering technologies and environmental risks, social impacts and decision-making processes, institutional and legal framework;
3) Mining industry and corporate social responsibility as a vector of societal innovation: covering societal changes, projects acceptability by affected communities and adaptive strategies, inter-relations between local communities and mining companies.

This report presents the think tank conduct and main outcomes of the three sub-topics.

Through interactive plenary and interdisciplinary working group sessions, the participants considered problems, weaknesses but also positives, and identified priority research areas, and proposed innovative solutions for policy development.
The recommendations made in this think tank were presented to the bi-regional policy dialogue platform held in Auckland in December 2014.
The main outcomes, conclusions, indicative future joint initiatives and policy recommendations can be found in the PACE-Net Plus Website (http://pacenet.eu/) and are summarised in this section.
The participatory work was underpinned by the three sub-topics, structuring the participant groups:
Sub-topic 1: Enhancing environmental consideration in mining while answering societal needs
The creation of knowledge and efficient skill base able to drive mining industry and economic prosperity in a way that fosters harmonious development of hosting areas, is of growing importance in many Pacific countries. Diverse topics have to be addressed to ensure that mining is not going to jeopardize the pillars of sustainable development like access to natural resources, preservation of community livelihoods, other community activities development and social and economical equity. The think tank explored how scientific knowledge, technologies, capacities and practices, policies and regulations may be improved and may open up innovative ways regarding mining project planning and mining activities management, in the overall objective to preserve biodiversity, natural resources integrity and ecological services for current and next generations.

Sub-topic 2: Increasing knowledge of environmental and social impacts of deep-sea mining
Deep-sea mineral deposits within territorial waters and EEZ of a number of Pacific Nations are recognized by local governments as a potential source of revenue able to strongly fasten the economic development of their country. Legitimate questions about the potential effects of that emerging industry are lacking response from such recent activity. The potential environmental impacts (effects on biodiversity, fisheries resources, nuisances and pollutions...) as well as social effects of deep-sea mining are not documented enough or at inadequate scale. This think tank contributed to identify the knowledge gaps to fill to enable efficient decision-making process in the Pacific countries vis-a-vis the development of deep-sea mining. There is room for improvement of knowledge that could guide informed decisions aiming to ensure an equitable share between environmental and social or societal costs and benefits for private companies, local government and communities.
Sub-topic 3: Mining industry and corporate social responsibility as a vector of societal innovation
Mining activities lead deep social and environmental changes in the hosting areas. The projects acceptability by communities is highly dependant on the mechanisms of disclosure, consultation and integration of people in the decision-making processes. Changes occurring in affected communities, strategies put in place by communities to cope with industrial activity, local capacities to share economic opportunities and benefits, relationships between communities and mining companies, are all in need of improvement and may be source of innovative approaches. The long mining history in some Pacific countries (New Caledonia, PNG), and the more recent or potential development of the sector in other countries (Vanuatu, Salomon Islands) open the opportunity to consider a regional specificity and to learn from past experiences, successes and mistakes, to guide the development of the mining sector in the Pacific region. The think tank discussed ways of identifying and analysing such societal innovations as well as the need to promote policies and best-practices to support a better consideration of needs, well-being and harmonious development of local communities, respecting local way of life and traditional customs.
The diverse mining history of the Pacific countries is paved with success as well as mistakes, including dramatic examples of failed development (Nauru) and environmental disasters (Ok Tedi in PNG). The development of the mining industry can be seen as a significant economic opportunity for the Pacific countries, but also as a major source of risks of environmental and social damage, and of societal change. Particularly, with the emerging potential of deep sea mining, new issues and challenges appear, and innovative ways must be found to grow the mining industry in a way that fosters harmonious development of local areas and ensures an equitable consideration between environmental and social costs and economic benefits.
Based on these preliminary considerations, participants should propose case studies illustrating the diversity of situations and topics and allowing the emergence of strengths and weaknesses of environmental and social management of the different cases. They studied the following cases chosen to illustrate each of the sub-topics:
Sub-topic 1
• Coal mine in South island, New Zealand
• Pre-exploration case study, New Caledonia
• Phosphate exploitation, Nauru
Sub-topic 2
• Solwara 1 Project of seafloor massive sulfides (Cu, Au, Ag, Zn), PNG
• Developing approaches to exploit manganese deposits, Cook islands
• Chatham Rise Phosphate deep sea mining, New Zealand

Sub-topic 3
• Koniambo mining project, New Caledonia
• Gold Ridge mine, Solomon Islands
• Oil research and lake Kudubu, PNG

Each case study was analysed in terms of strengths (what is working well), weaknesses (what are the problems) and their diagnostics in order to bring out a shared vision of potential ways of improvement and innovation to promote.
After constructive discussions the participants reached to a common vision of priorities in order to move towards a more sustainable exploitation of mineral resources, highlighting:
Strengths/Positive points Weaknesses/Problems Diagnostics
The political will and the development of policy and law Weak governance
• Due diligence and transparency
Understanding of the social impact as part of the process Inadequate community consultation and engagement • Social license to operate
Recognizing the importance of science and problems and gaps Absence/lack of capacity at local, technical, scientific level etc • Creation and access to baseline data
Transparency/information sharing, collaboration and partnership Lifestyle changes and mobility effects • Assessment and acceptance of the risk
Recognizing the importance of science and problems and gaps Cumulative trans-boundary effects, e.g. tailing, wastes; fisheries... • Creation and access to baseline data
Community involvement and interest – strength of landowners, local communities Lifestyle changes and mobility effects • Post activity site rehabilitation and human impact compensation
Better understanding of community demands and business are adapting •
Cook island’s set up for SWF (Sovereign wealth fund)
Resultant Synergies and Priorities
Collection of, and access to cross-disciplinary baseline data, including social, cultural, ecosystem, biodiversity, environmental (e.g. marine spatial planning; resource evaluation)
Efficient framework for industry – communities dialogue
Preliminary impact assessments, risk analysis, impacts on lifestyle changes
Monitoring and evaluation, mobility effects
Culturally appropriate engagement techniques
Capacity building for locals and train the trainer programs
Pollution, toxicology and plume minimization (deep sea mining)
New environmentally sustainable technologies

• The need to strengthen governance and regulation of mining activities and create financial mechanisms to assure offsets, decommissioning and “after-mining” in local economies;
• The necessity of mining project disclosures and systematic integration of communities into the decision-making process during the entire project life-cycle of mines;
• The urgent need to consolidate regional databases and to enhance knowledge access and sharing (regional resource center) on natural and human environment and to develop suitable methodologies for risks assessment (comprising cumulative and trans-boundary risks and impacts), and;
• The need for supporting innovative and green technology transfer to facilitate the development of mining projects on a sustainable basis.
Proposed joint activities
No. Proposed Joint Activities
1 Methodologies for cross-cultural work and communication to better deliver outcomes & increase return to investment
Key elements: Scoping study of 5 pacific island countries, develop baseline economic scorecard; curriculum development to feed into HDR; labor mobility and community tensions, conflict resolution and disputes
2 Pacific center of excellence for social responsibility and resources
Key elements: Policy innovation; governance good practices guidelines; excellence in social responsibility and impact analysis (SIA/EIA); innovation in science & technology communication; capacity building for stakeholders; research facility for economic diversification and alternative livelihoods; host for traditional ecological studies
3 Risk assessment tools for deep water and tropical ecosystems (for the better management of the deep marine ecosystems)
Key elements: Identify risk assessment tool for biodiversity; understand ecosystem services and function; multiple lines of evidence approach (site specific); how to predict the effects of change (anthropogenic, trophic, natural variability, eco-toxicology); methodology; protocols and procedures for assessment.
4 Translate CSR into financial support and include legal economic and environmental managements – e.g. Common cleanup Fund/insurance
Key elements: Scope issue, legislative aspects; translating CSR into financial support; review existing insurance/bonding mechanisms; example/case studies for different industries
5 Strengthen PPP for exploration, monitoring and capacity building
Key elements: Win-win situation in mining between industry and landowners; involvement of the mining industry as investor in public services like green power (geothermal power plant for example); creating connection between community, government, researchers and industry.
6 Non destructive exploration techniques for establishing environmental baseline
Key elements: Engineering and environment; improve understanding of mineral resources, the environment and mining technology; improve environmental outcomes and technology usage and transfer; new and socially acceptable technologies and applications

Observation systems of the climate change and its impact in the Pacific
Introduction
PACE-Net Plus and the GOPS organized in association with PACE-SD a scientific workshop on “Strengthening the Observation systems of Climate change and its impacts in the South Pacific, for a sustainable management of resources and adaptation”.
This workshop on climate change and its impacts due to natural variability and anthropogenic causes focused on three scientific and technological area of research:
➢ Oceanography, ocean atmosphere interactions and variability;
➢ Impacts of climate change on the ecosystems and the biodiversity, on the marine and terrestrial resources;
➢ Impacts of climate change on societies.
Synthetic presentations introduced discussions and exchanges about the following questions:
➢ What types of data and tools are needed? What impact will be addressed by which data?
➢ How will data be used and model integration will be achieved?
➢ What partnerships are needed to support and exploit these observation systems?
The central objective of this workshop was to bring together experts from Pacific countries, from their regional organizations, and from Europe will be to produce a guidance note for the European Institutions on the projects and tools for these systems of observation, as well as the partnerships to be implemented to strengthen those, in the perspective of the societal challenges relating to climate change in the Pacific.


Submarine observatory in the lagoon of NC
©M. Rodier/IRD
School of tuna
©M. Taquet/IFREMER
Submerged wharf in Vanuatu
©B. Pelletier/IRD

Guidance note
This guidance note is based on the outcomes of this scientific workshop.
This workshop on climate change and its impacts due to natural variability and anthropogenic causes focused on three scientific and technological area of research:
➢ Oceanography, ocean atmosphere interactions and variability;
➢ Impacts of climate change on the ecosystems and the biodiversity, on the marine and terrestrial resources;
➢ Impacts of climate change on societies.
Synthetic presentations introduced discussions and exchanges about the following questions:
➢ What types of data and tools are needed? What impact will be addressed by which data?
➢ How will data be used and model integration will be achieved?
➢ What partnerships are needed to support and exploit these observation systems?
The central objective of this workshop was to bring together experts from Pacific countries, from their regional organizations, and from Europe will be to produce a guidance note for the European Institutions on the projects and tools for these systems of observation, as well as the partnerships to be implemented to strengthen those, in the perspective of the societal challenges relating to climate change in the Pacific.
Outcomes Panel 1: Oceanography, ocean-atmosphere interactions and variability
Recommendations
The group recognised the importance of the Pacific Ocean as one of the main actor of climate change. Likewise, it recognises that any changes of the Pacific water masses will have global impact. Monitoring of the ocean is required. Because of its extraordinary large dimension, the Pacific Ocean need both specific and innovative.
Therefore, the group recommends:
➢ Hold regular meetings/workshops, such as the one organised by the PACE-Net Plus programme and the Science Technology and Research (STAR) meetings or SPC-SOPAC
➢ Retrieve historic and analogue data, incl. identifying non-functioning monitoring sites
➢ Develop coastal monitoring for multi-hazard mitigation, forecasting and coral reef conditions
➢ Increase and develop both surface and vertical open-ocean data acquisition, in particular with respect to monitoring of ocean acidification and carbon cycle
➢ Sustain and reinforce measurements from ships of opportunity
➢ Establish long term mooring time series and ship surveys
➢ Better integration of multi-cultural and multi-language approaches
➢ Seek Pacific Island leaders support (forum, Pacific Met Council)
➢ Identify focal points in countries
➢ Identify calls for proposals and develop specific proposals
➢ Agreement for data sharing
➢ Collaboration in the Region for data sharing.
Outcomes panel 2: Observing impacts of climate change on ecosystems and biodiversity, and on marine and terrestrial resources
Recommendations
➢ Improve partnership to overcome policy difficulties to access data
➢ Promote free data access across the region including ESA sentinel program
➢ Crisis situation in the region means urgent need to establish long term ecological sites: low-lying coral reef islands (sentinel islands), High Island with gradients, sentinel ecosystems network over the pacific region
➢ Promote ongoing programs for local capacity building
➢ Promote stronger links between experts to distinguish between anthropogenic and natural climate change.
Outcomes panel 3: Observing impacts of climate change on communities
Three main actions to be carried out:
➢ Collect and compile national data on population and socio-economy,
➢ Select pilot sites for observing. Two types of pilot sites:
- Sites heavily exposed to climate change, where all the social and economical changes are supposed to be driven by CC.
- Sites with lower exposure to CC where it is needed to assess the place of CC as driver of social and economical changes
➢ In this two types of sites carried out observations on the impact of CC in terms of material human security and no human material security.

Potential Impact:
Potential impact
The project made positive contributions to advancing an EU-PAC relationship in ST&I, both in terms of bi-regional policy-level discussion, and in terms of individual research partnerships between EU and PAC actors. One of the significant findings of the bi-regional policy dialogues was that an effective bi-regional dialogue is poorly served when there is a lack of capacity for such dialogue in the Pacific. Hence, a working group was established to develop policy documents with, and for the Pacific nations in order to begin and/or accelerate national and regional efforts towards building ST&I capacity (incl. ST&I frameworks and policies). This work was partly undertaken, with the culmination of the PNP project’s activities being the synthesis of all lessons learnt, and summarised into a recommendation document for the Pacific (“Towards a Pacific ST&I Agenda”).
PACE-Net Plus promoted the integration of the Pacific region and its interests into a number of EC roadmaps and actions. A core mission of PACE-Net Plus was to raise the visibility of the Pacific within the EU. This included the EC Directorates-General for Research and Innovation and for International Cooperation and Development, through illuminating the role of ST&I for development aid and better governance. Also included was the European Exterior Action Service, through “science diplomacy”. Conversely, PACE-Net Plus also aimed at assisting greater integration of EU activities into the research and development policies of the Pacific countries. The project was therefore a significant contributor to a bi-regional dialogue between the two regions.
The project also tackled societal challenges that EU-Pacific Countries are facing or that have a global character through: 1) understanding the factors, mechanisms and obstacles that underlie innovation processes in the Pacific Island Countries and Territories; 2) focusing on the role EU scientific and technological cooperation performs in the successful generation of new products and processes, and of novel forms of collective organization; 3) Identifying policy recommendations that stimulate academic, private/public sector, NGOs and other relevant stakeholders both from the EU and the Pacific to engage and cooperate in innovation processes and to support cooperation on issues related to framework conditions for research and innovation (e.g. IPR protection, standards, regulations, access to finances); 4) and finally, strong interactions with the New Zealand and Australian BILATs take place, as they both have a strong focus in innovation cooperation issues.
Four mechanisms were implemented by the project partners: H2020 information sessions, think tanks, seed funding, and policy dialogue. Each mechanism fulfilled a distinct function and in terms of fostering research partnerships, seed funding was viewed as extremely effective. Think tanks, as an evolution of earlier research prioritisation workshops can serve both policy and research partnerships. In PACE-Net Plus, the policy dialogues on STI issues held for stakeholders are distinct from formal region to region policy dialogues held between officials. Diversity of incomes and capacities for research and innovation is a feature of the PAC region and therefore of the EU-PAC ST&I partnership. All mechanisms used to foster partnerships should be contextualised and recognise the need for complementary funding programmes to underpin a robust bi-regional relationship.
The delegates were enthusiastic in pursuing this dialogue, and reasserted the necessity to implement a Regional Committee for research in the South Pacific, as well as the importance of the EU to launch research calls in a format suitable for that region. Also highlighted was the formidable research opportunity represented for both regions by the development of a multi-disciplinary observation system of climate change in the South Pacific (a "pilot project" was submitted to the EU Parliament).

Main dissemination activities
The dissemination and communication activities in the PACE-NET Plus project have been carried out within Work Package 5 (Task 5.1 Understanding and promoting Horizon 2020 and other European programmes) as well as within Work Package 7 (Task 7.5 Communication strategy and dissemination material).
The purpose of this deliverable is to report on the project’s dissemination and communication activities that have been promoted during the 36 months of its activity, i.e. September 2013 to August 2016. In particular, this document highlights the main achievements with respect to the key communication tools the Consortium has identified and selected, which are:
• The PACE-NET Plus public Website and Intranet collaborative space for the project partners;
• The project outreach generated so far via the partners dissemination through their own channels and through the project social networks;
• The participation of project partners in selected events such as Info Days;
• The produced presentations and promotional material (project logo, promotional leaflets, project compendium etc.).
• Last but not least, a short film on the project.
The dissemination strategy has developed throughout the entire project period on the coordination team’s instructions and on the PACE-Net Plus partners’ own initiatives As the table of the partners communication and dissemination efforts reflects here bellow, the core part of the PACE-NET Plus dissemination and communication strategy has been performed by Montroix Pty and IRD, with the active contribution of all project partners, mainly ANU and LCR.

Communication tools
In order to keep the project’s identify and sustain the communication work already done in the former project, the PACE-NET Plus logo was built on the former project logo.

A project flyer was elaborated, that summarized the objectives and contents of the project. Link to our Flyer (English version):
http://PACE-NET.eu/sites/default/files/PACE-Net%20Plus%20flyer%20english.pdf

A PowerPoint presentation (in French and English) was elaborated as well, that the Partners adapted and used for each of their project presentations.

A communiqué, or a press release has been produced and disseminated on each of the many project events (most of the time in French and in English) (see dissemination table here after).

Five Newsletter issues have been elaborated by IRD and posted through the website in the run of the project, to promote its main events and activities.
Link to our Newsletters: http://PACE-NET.eu/newsletter/PACE-NETplus

The website was the primary point of public information about the project, its activities, and outcomes. It utilised the same web address (http://pacenet.eu/) as the previous PACE-Net project, in order to ensure that people familiar with the previous project can continue to find information and receive support. The content from the previous website still exists via the http://old.pacenet.eu/ web address.
The website’s purposes are to:
• Inform the public of the PACE-Net Plus project and activities
• Provide information about news, events and funding relevant to Pacific and/or European STI collaborations
• Allows members of the public to join the PACE-Net Plus community
• Deliver the PACE-Net Plus newsletter
• Provide a repository for documents (reports, presentations, photos, etc) relevant to the project
• Provide support (information and contact information) for Pacific researchers interesting in Horizon 2020
• Increase the profile for Pacific-Europe STI collaborations
On the last point, a significant aspect to improving the visibility of the PACE-Net Plus website is to increase project’s online activity. This is achieved through:
• Publishing (or re-publishing) relevant information on the PACE-Net Plus website. This directly improves the “page ranking” of the website (i.e. the position on the list of search results, for example, when performing a Google Search for information connected with the project).
• Actively engaging in relevant social media sharing and engagement. In particular, the project has established a Facebook page and a Twitter account to highlight important information and events about the project, and also broader material of relevance (e.g. Marie Curie news on Facebook).
Initial development of the website took place during October/November 2013, and it has continued to receive enhancements.
One of these enhancements was the implementation of “Groups”. These Groups allowed for registered users to select their area of preference (subdivided into the PNP priority thematic areas) in order to more readily gain access to relevant information. The intention was for this to provide a starting point for a Community of Practice (CoP).
Establishment of a CoP has been in the mind of the website developers since the beginning of the project. However, in order to be feasible, there needs to firstly be a critical number of users utilising the website regularly. The above strategies, to improve the visibility of the website, were the primary means with which to facilitate this (in addition to project partners personally inviting individuals to register on the site).
However, despite promoting the feature at project events, the Groups have received little interest from the community. This almost certainly comes down to the fact that the “community” (of EU and Pacific researchers seeking bi-regional collaborations) is still a small number; hence it has not been able to accumulate enough critical mass to sustain meaningful online activity.
In light of this, during the course of the project the strategy has been to shift focus away from a dedicated CoP mechanism and more onto existing social media channels. This has proven more successful, as information shared by the project has more readily become engaged with relevant individuals. Similarly, those connected to PNP via social media have also shared relevant information and dialogue via their social media accounts, which has been picked up by the PNP project, and generated online discussion and dialogue amongst the social network communities.
Additionally, at the conclusion of the project, and in conjunction with the Leaders of the Future event in Auckland, Montroix Pty has established a closed email list, for exclusive use my members of the ST&I working group and key Pacific contacts, in order to continue to facilitate good policy development on the back of the excellent work initiated by the PNP project.
The project Website has been regularly updated with continued development bringing new features online. It is to note that a History section has been added in the menu to provide access to the important documents of the previous PACE-Net project. PACE-NET Plus is also on Twitter (@pacenetplus) and Facebook. Project Website: http://plus.pacenet.eu/
Towards the end of the project, activities around the project’s ST&I working group has led to the development of a new website, http://pacenet.plus/, that will continue to serve the Pacific (and Pacific-Europe) ST&I community after the conclusion of the project. The project’s website (http://plus.pacenet.eu/) has been archived and will continue to be available as a static website in order to keep the outputs of the project visible and available for the near future.
At the end of the project, there were 267 registered users on the website.

After the initial development and launch of the website (weeks 0-15), visitor numbers to the website steadily increased on a weekly basis (from around 100 unique visits per week, to around 350 unique visits per week) until the mid-point of the project. This corresponds to the project’s significant activities, including think-tanks as well as seed funding, culminating in the Brussels bi-regional policy dialogue.
Subsequently, after the Brussels bi-regional policy-dialogue, the project has shifted gear, with far fewer high-profile activities, instead focussing on delivering the seed funding, innovation studies, and the ST&I working group. The final two peaks (around weeks 116 and 144) correspond to the OCTA Innovation event in Noumea and the bi-regional policy dialogue in Nadi (Fiji).
These visitors are from across the globe, though not surprisingly dominated by Pacific and European locations. Note the high percentage for Australia, as this is where the webmaster is located. Also, interestingly, there is a high percentage of visits from India. This is almost certainly due to the fact that there is an internet service provider in India named “PACE-NET”, which no doubt causes the PACE-Net Plus website to appear in search results for this Indian company.

In addition to the website, the project has also maintained a social media presence, in particular on Facebook and Twitter. We have found these channels to be an effective means of reaching a broader group of people than the website, due to the fact that information shared on social media will appear in the accounts of interested people, regardless of whether or not they have connected with the PACE-Net Plus accounts.
Utilising the PACE-Net Plus Website, plus social media presence (Twitter and Facebook), task partners have continued to highlight news, events and funding opportunities that have arisen in the Pacific region. This includes, for example, international conferences, job openings, scholarships and fellowships, travel grants, and new research outputs.
The “Twitter impressions” indicate the number of people who saw an item that was shared via Twitter. This peaked in June 2015 when IRD posted a tweet about the PACE-Net Plus workshop on observatory systems. IRD has many thousands of followers on its Twitter account, hence the large engagement. The level of engagement with Twitter has reduced since then.
However, the decline in Twitter engagement has given rise to more engagement via Facebook. In particular, Facebook has more easily enabled the sharing of multimedia, including photos and videos, which makes these articles more appealing for people to explore in more detail. The final peak for the project’s ‘Facebook reach’ (which similarly tracks the number of people who see an item shared via Facebook) corresponds to the sharing of the project’s video. This video was further shared extensively by many of the project partner organisations, as well as the individuals involved.

As the project coordinator, IRD made a film on the project, collecting statements from the project partners and key stakeholders from both regions, during several events that took place in 2015 and 2016. These shared their views on the project but also their vision of Research in ST&I in the Pacific. The film shows the variety of organisations and diversity of people who engaged, as well as the many topics addressed in PACE-Net Plus. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCVx6S_-NoI

Compendium. This booklet, displaying all the project outcomes has been developed and includes the following sections and will be disseminated to all the project key stakeholders at the very end of and after the project:
• Introduction (background)
• Regional context of STI research in the Pacific
• State of the Art (Directory + Bibliometric analysis)
• Non Communicable Diseases and infectious diseases in the Pacific
• Agri-aquaculture
• Ciguatera and ciguatoxins
• Water & Waste management
• Mining & its environment
• Observation systems of the Climate change in the Pacific
• Innovation in the Pacific and opportunities for Europe
• Seed-funding
• Recommendations for enhanced bi-regional partnerships
• Towards a Pacific ST&I Framework
• Regional and bi-regional dialogue (STI group)
• PACE-Net Plus (other) success stories (PIURN/USP, SIDS Conference/NUS, Pacific Fund on water/ANU, etc.)
See: http://plus.pacenet.eu/news/pace-net-plus-bridge-over-europe-and-pacific-region-science-technology-and-innovation-2016/

Dissemination efforts and channels (see D7.4) with a list of the following actions performed by each project partner including:
Material (communiqués)
Dissemination channel
Type of audience
Countries/
Regions addressed
Size of audience (approx.)
Web-link to the media release


List of Websites:
Project Website: http://plus.pacenet.eu/

Contact details:
Pr Jean-Francois Marini
PACE-Net Plus coordinator
IRD, 101, promenade Roger Laroque
Anse Vata - BP A5
98848 Noumea cedex
Phone +687 26 07 47
Mobile +687 97 51 98

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