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Inter-sectoral mobility of researchers in South-Eastern Europe

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Moving more easily from lab to market

Recommendations to enhance industry–academia collaboration have been made for the countries of South-Eastern Europe (SEE). Such exchanges will help industry in the region to become more competitive and give researchers better career prospects.

Industrial Technologies

Improvements to intersectoral mobility – the movement of researchers between academia and industry – can boost research and innovation across Europe. In theory, intellectual property rights and research findings are just as portable today as people, their ideas and their careers. In practice, however, there are structural barriers to the freedom of movement for researchers, in particular with regard to the issue of research policy. Removing such legal and policy obstacles was the aim of the 'Intersectoral mobility of researchers in south-Eastern Europe' (I-SEEMOB) project, funded by the EU. I-SEEMOB developed a bottom-up approach in a policy coordination initiative undertaken by eight countries in the SEE region. It focused on enhancing the career development and intersectoral mobility of research and development (R&D) personnel in the SEE region. Initially, the project mapped the current status of industrial representation in SEE's R&D sector and its respective needs. Then it analysed the legislative framework for career development among researchers in order to identify any gaps. Finally, the project team developed a set of policy recommendations and guidelines for their respective governments in SEE. These were aimed at enabling the formulation of common research policies in the region in order to remove obstacles currently hindering researchers' intersectoral mobility and career development. Thanks to the I-SEEMOB project, SEE governments now have the potential to solve the main intersectoral mobility obstacles hindering the career development of researchers in their countries. Strengthening this industry–academia collaboration will benefit both the economy and innovation within this European region.

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