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Trans-national co-operation among National Contact Points for Socio-economic sciences and the Humanities (SSH NCPs)

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Strengthening the foundation for important research

A transnational cooperation project extended the achievements of an earlier project supporting socioeconomic sciences and humanities research, as part of the Seventh Framework Programme. Funded by the EU, the follow-up project was dedicated to developing a strong and efficient network of relevant National Contact Points.

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Building on the work of NET4SOCIETY, the network of National Contact Points (NCPs) for socioeconomic sciences and the humanities (SSH), the NET4SOCIETY2 project was established to increase the visibility of European SSH research. The project ran for two years, supporting more than 50 European and international SSH NCPs active in the network and actively involving them in tailor-made workshops, high-quality training sessions and bilateral meetings. The project developed several targeted tools facilitating the work of SSH NCPs: one such tool is the virtual helpdesk. The organisation of large-scale events and production of analytical reports enabled research partnerships and generated pertinent knowledge for current research initiatives. Two conferences successfully attracted several hundred participants. Beyond enabling knowledge exchange and capacity building, other innovative approaches also facilitated the work of the SSH scientific community. One particular example is the open letter formulated and presented, along with 25 000 signatures, to EU Commissioner Maire Geoghegan-Quinn, on the importance of SSH within the context of Horizon 2020. In addition, NET4SOCIETY2 developed various instruments (e.g. a research database and partner search service) that support SSH researchers and facilitate research cooperation in the context of the Seventh Framework Programme. An overwhelming majority of the SSH NCPs gave very positive feedback on the project's activities and efforts. NET4SOCIETY2 members fully achieved all project objectives, thus further consolidating and strengthening the network of SSH NCPs.

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