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Stimulating and facilitating the participation of European researchers in Korean R&D programmes

Final Report Summary - KORRIDOR (Stimulating and facilitating the participation of European researchers in Korean R&D programmes)

Executive Summary:
The KORRIDOR project started with the basic idea of maintaining a balance between the opportunities for Korean researchers to participate in European Research and Technology Development (RTD) programmes and those of European researchers in Korean RTD programmes. Therefore, the objectives of the project are firmly based on the understanding that the balance is an important prerequisite for stimulating mutually beneficial RTD cooperation between Korea and the EU. Thus, the project’s final objective is to widen and strengthen the RTD cooperation between both sides within the research areas that have common interests. To attain the final objective, the project has the following operational objectives: 1) to map and document existing access opportunities for Europeans in Korean RTD programmes, to study and harmonize existing best practices of European participation, and to identify the major barriers hindering participation on both sides; 2) to facilitate the participation of European researchers in Korean RTD programmes by setting up a Helpdesk service and training potential multipliers; and 3) to raise awareness of the access opportunities for European organizations/researchers in Korean RTD programmes among European research communities and to stimulate interests from the European side.
The KORRIDOR consortium created a work plan structure that consists of four work packages: 1) WP1: Mapping and Policy Recommendations; 2) WP2: Dissemination and Liaison Building; 3) WP3: Capacity Building; and 4) WP4: Management and Coordination. For the past 28 months, the consortium produced five public reports, seven restricted reports, one public project website, and a number of training and promotion materials that are open to the public. The consortium also published three useful reports, Policy paper, Participation Guidelines, and Monitoring report, which provided us with a deeper understanding of the quantitative and qualitative status of European participation in Korean RTD programmes, and gave us political and practical recommendations and tips that can be used to increase European participation in Korean RTD programmes.
In terms of dissemination activities, KORRIDOR partners performed 101 activities aimed at both European and Korean S&T officers, multipliers, researchers, funding agents, and managers of R&D international cooperation centres during the project periods. The types of dissemination activity varied considerably and included workshops (7), events (4), conferences (1), flyer production (1), newsletter publication (2), Info day brochure production (1), website establishment (3), publication of information through website (3), presentations at other events (36), circulation of information by hosting small or one-to-one meetings (32), and others (11). We believe that such a large number of dissemination activities have raised awareness of Korean RTD programmes by the European research community.
Finally, the consortium would like to suggest the following recommendations and top tips.

For both of Korea and EU policy makers:
• Raise awareness among European researchers.
• Set up clear information systems for Europeans on Korean RTD programmes.
• Publish calls in English.
• Increase the Korean RTD budget allocated to international cooperation.
• Address the need for a centralized data system to monitor European participation in Korean RTD programmes, and provide in-depth statistics and analysis.
• Strengthen the role of European organizations that have outsourced to Korea in building awareness.
• Keep European scientific attachés informed of opportunities.
• For better reciprocity between Korea and EU, both sides need to reach mutual agreement at a higher political level to remove difficulties and ease restrictions in fund sourcing from counterpart countries.

For individual European researchers:
• Conduct your partner search in the months leading up to Korean RTD programme calls.
• For the application and negotiation phases, having a Korean colleague act as a cultural and linguistic intermediary would be very helpful.
• Check the eligibility of your Korean counterparts.
• Before beginning the cooperation, an assessment of the leadership ability of your Korean counterpart should be conducted, particularly if he/she is to be the project coordinator.
• Establish good personal relations with your partners, as this factor is vital for a successful cooperation. A face-to-face meeting at the beginning of the project is recommended.
• Factor in a possible visit to Korea at either the evaluation or signing stage.
• Establish a solid agreement and ensure that aspects concerning IPR and accessibility to data and results are clear from the beginning.
• Familiarize yourself with the Korean work culture and behaviour before embarking on the cooperation.
• If you intend to stay in Korea for some time, learn the alphabet and some basic vocabulary.