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Enhancing Latvian project management

A training course was developed to improve the interest and activity of Latvians in the Sixth Framework Programme. It also achieved a greater visibility and recognition of this research community within the EU.
Enhancing Latvian project management
Research and technological development in Latvia have a long history, with roots which can be traced as far back as the 16th century. Today, Latvia’s scientific institutions are organised into 11 state scientific institutes and 15 independent ones based in universities. However, their current technological level has not yet reached the EU average. For that reason, strengthening cooperation with the EU through the integration of the Latvian research community into the European Research Area (ERA) is very important.

Previous studies had shown that researchers from Latvia are well informed about Framework Programme (FP) activities and that they had actively taken part in the related submission of projects. However, very few Latvian participants had actually taken up the position of coordinator in these research projects. The research skills required for writing proposals and coordinating projects are best acquired through experience and practical training.

Improving the skills necessary for the preparation of competitive FP proposals and the successful management of projects was the goal of the 'Intensive training course for the development of skills necessary for the successful participation in Sixth Framework Programme' (Europraxis) project

The main objective of Europraxis was to foster successful involvement of Latvians in FP projects. Project participants designed, organised and presented a training course which covered, among other things, writing a competitive proposal for the Sixth Framework Programme (FP6), as well as negotiations, management and administration of FP contracts. Interest in the course was very high, and it was oversubscribed by 50%.

The project was a success, as demonstrated by the fact that Latvia subsequently submitted over 1 000 project proposals, and received support and EU funding for the involvement of some 214 Latvian organisations in 192 FP6 projects, 10 of which were led by Latvian participants.

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