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An upgrade for research funding

Recommendations have emerged to help policymakers improve funding systems for research and development (R&D) with a view to fostering innovation in the EU.

Climate Change and Environment

Innovation in R&D is a cornerstone of the European knowledge-based economy and has been particularly encouraged by EU policymakers in recent years. The EU-funded project 'Building and improving support for RTD policy and public spending' (BIS-RTD) helped articulate and spread good practices to further innovation in research and technological development (RTD). It established a cooperation platform for European regions to support dissemination of these good practices. In studying barriers to innovation, the project discovered that political parties did not adequately support innovation through funding in a manner that could enhance the knowledge society. This was due to politicians' lack of understanding regarding the relationship between RTD funding and competitiveness. Additionally, the project found that research communities have also fallen behind in supporting and promoting funding for RTD, particularly vis-à-vis government stakeholders and the media. Beyond increased funding, the project recommended improved funding systems that reward quality, encourage excellence and demonstrate applicability. This requires an overhaul of funding systems and increased involvement of corporate stakeholders. BIS-RTD, therefore, produced recommendations on how to improve RTD funding and related communication policies. Ultimately, this was conceived to help policymakers, key decision makers and other stakeholders develop more effective systems for RTD funding. The recommendations and other useful data were published on the project's website to help stakeholders upgrade RTD systems.

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