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Annual Report 1996 on the RTD activities of the European Union

The European Commission has, on the initiative of Mrs. Edith Cresson, Commissioner responsible for research, education and training, approved the 1996 Annual Report on the research and technological development (RTD) activities of the European Union. The report, which covers a...
The European Commission has, on the initiative of Mrs. Edith Cresson, Commissioner responsible for research, education and training, approved the 1996 Annual Report on the research and technological development (RTD) activities of the European Union. The report, which covers activities in 1995, presents a first balance sheet of the Fourth RTD Framework Programme.

On a statistical level, the report shows that, in 1995, around 28,000 proposals were submitted for the specific RTD programmes, out of which 2,660 projects, involving 12,185 participants, were selected. Community funding for these projects amounted to some ECU 2,033 million. The figures also show that the average project involves six or seven participants in over four Member States, and has a Community contribution of over ECU 1 million.

Beyond the figures, the 1996 Report points to a number of major innovations under the Fourth Framework Programme: a greater concern for the needs of citizens and for industry competitivity; increased industry participation (with special focus on the involvement of small and medium-sized enterprises); and a simplification of procedures. In this context, the report notes that, in 1995, the proportion of participants from industry rose (40%, up from 26% in 1994) and the proportion of SMEs participating also rose (20%, up from 17% in 1994).

Particular attention is drawn to the role of the research/industry Task Forces, launched in early 1995, which have contributed to the coordination of research policy and to ensuring a better orientation of resources towards the needs of industry and society.

The annual report outlines some of the projects undertaken in each of the 18 specific programmes, pointing to important scientific advances made as a result of Community funding. These include: the unravelling of the yeast genome, the discovery of a substitute for PVC; and the development of a process for destroying CFCs which are threatening the ozone layer.

More generally, the report testifies to the role of Community RTD policy in contributing to growth and creating employment in Europe. Notably through its contribution to the development of training, increased interaction between researchers and the users of research results, and through increased cooperation on a European scale.

Source: European Commission, Service du Porte-parole
DE FR

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