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ERAC adopts advice on ERA Framework

On 12 December 2011, the European Research Area Committee (ERAC) adopted its opinion on the development of an ERA Framework following an earlier request by the Council

The ERAC opinions builds also on substantial inputs from other ERA Groups (see below).

In its opinion, ERAC sketches the global context and the international nature of science as the context for the development of ERA, demanding more synergies between national and international programmes as well as synergies and complementarities between Horizon 2020 and the ERA Framework. It stresses the need to define ERA in terms of achievable and realistic goals. It says that efforts to complete ERA should continue to focus on the five axes - human resources, cross-border operation, knowledge circulation, research infrastructures and the international dimension - but with a higher emphasis on links with education and innovation and strategic research agendas, as well as taking into account different research actors' perspectives.

A second important message is a call for leveraging the research potential of Europe by better cross-border interaction, articulation and coordination between national, regional and EU funding programmes and to facilitating the cross-border operations of research performing organisations. The potential usefulness of legislation in specific cases is acknowledged though it should be considered as a last resort.

The opinion underlines the need for a robust system to monitor progress towards the ERA objectives involving evaluation and impact metrics and criteria, and a progress report every second year. Long term strategic objectives are also called for to facilitate orientation of national research and innovation programmes towards agreed EU objectives.

ERAC opinion (257KB)

Inputs from ERA groups: