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Boost for international research evaluation

The 2005 KISTEP1-WREN2 Workshop, which was held in Seoul, South Korea from 30-31 May 2005, brought together 30 speakers and 200 participants from the US, the EU and Asia for a discussion on R&D evaluation.

The objective of the workshop was to encourage a focused dialogue among nations to result in actionable items that address common science evaluation challenges and help R&D managers to evaluate the efficacy of current and future publicly funded R&D plans, programs, and initiatives. Day 1 of the workshop presented the progress and challenges of national models for evaluating public R&D programs. Day 2 displayed current major issues in R&D program evaluation in 4 sessions: Developing Effective Comparative Performance Indicators, Ex-Ante Evaluation for Public R&D Investments, New Tools for Systems Level Evaluation and Ex-Post Evaluation for Public R&D Investments. The workshop concluded with a proposal to begin establishing and collaborating in the International Framework for Evaluation of Research (INTER) program in which organizations that are responsible for evaluation and strategic planning of publicly funded R&D come together to understand and share the current theories and best practices in measurement and evaluation. With WREN, or European Commission, or U.S. Department of Energy as the Secretariat of INTER, the first 3 years will serve as a trial period in which a network of 3 working groups will focus on the themes of Theory and Evidence Based Evaluation, New Evaluation Models and Tools, and Reliable and Internationally Comparable Data. Speaking after the conference, Bill Valdez said that "The Korea WREN Workshop was a significant step forward in establishing methodologies which can be used by public bodies and eventually private sector organizations and commercial concerns. This will contribute to the development of more effective science and innovation policies and programmes. The workshop highlighted common challenges and issues facing nations in terms of lacking international and national evaluation standards and comparability. As the result of the workshop, the R&D evaluation communities are ready to move forward in working and learning together, exchanging ideas, and engaging in collaborative projects to reach the goal of finding improved R&D evaluation as a means to support the growth, competitiveness, and quality of our life. Media contact,Marta Czerniawska,ISC, Rue Wiertz, 50/28,B-1050 Brussels, Belgium,Tel.: +32 (0)2 401 61 47,Fax: +32 (0)2 401 68 68,E-mail: For further information on WREN:,Ms Elisa Lee,WREN Program,Advanced Systems Technology and Management, Inc.,8300 Old Courthouse Rd. Suite 210,Vienna, VA 22182,1-703-821-8674, Washington research Evaluation Network (WREN - serves as a forum for the US Federal R&D evaluation community to explore new approaches that will improve the management of science and technology organizations. Key questions that WREN address include: What is the overall justification for continued Federal investments in science and technology? , How can the outcomes of R&D be systematically assessed? , What is the basis for making investments in different areas of science and technology? , Is it possible to conduct systems-level analyses and evaluations of S&T, particularly national systems? Answering these questions will require new evaluation approaches and fundamentally new theories about the behavior of S&T organizations. WREN will bring together theorists from academia, experts from private industry, and evaluation practitioners from the Federal government to develop these new approaches and theories. ,WREN is also part of a larger evaluation network that includes nodes in Europe, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, Canada and other countries that have a similar interest in R&D evaluation. What brings everyone together is: A focus on Federal research and development programs. , Inclusion of non-traditional evaluation methods. , A national or international perspective on science and technology. , Involvement of multiple R&D disciplines that cut across many different technology applications. 1Korea Institute of Science and Technology Evaluation and Planning,2Washington Research Evaluation Network