Navigation path

Themes
Agriculture & food
Energy
Environment
ERA-NET
Health & life sciences
Human resources & mobility
  Careers & mobility
  Marie Curie Actions
  Training
  Other
Industrial research
Information society
Innovation
International cooperation
Nanotechnology
Pure sciences
Research infrastructures
Research policy
Science & business
Science in society
Security
SMEs
Social sciences and humanities
Space
Special Collections
Transport

Countries
Countries
  Argentina
  Australia
  Austria
  Belgium
  Benin
  Brazil
  Bulgaria
  Canada
  Chile
  China
  Croatia
  Cyprus
  Czech Republic
  Denmark
  Egypt
  Estonia
  Finland
  France
  Georgia
  Germany
  Ghana
  Greece
  Hungary
  Iceland
  India
  Ireland
  Israel
  Italy
  Japan
  Kazakhstan
  Kenya
  Korea
  Latvia
  Lithuania
  Luxembourg
  Malta
  Mexico
  Montenegro
  Morocco
  Namibia
  Netherlands
  Nigeria
  Norway
  Peru
  Poland
  Portugal
  Romania
  Russia
  Serbia
  Slovakia
  Slovenia
  South Africa
  Spain
  Swaziland
  Sweden
  Switzerland
  Taiwan
  Tunisia
  Turkey
  Ukraine
  United Kingdom
  United States


This page was published on 26/09/2006
Published: 26/09/2006

   Success Stories

Last Update: 26-09-2006  
Related category(ies):
Human resources & mobility  |  International cooperation  |  Research policy  |  Science in society

 

Add to PDF "basket"

Report indicates institutional, cultural barriers hamper international cooperation

The European Commission recently released a draft report detailing an online public consultation regarding publicly funded international research programs.

Patents remain a wrinkle for international cooperation.  © European Communities
Patents remain a wrinkle for international cooperation.
© European Communities

The DG RESEARCH consultation makes clear that researchers feel that the exploitation of findings from publicly funded research is key to improving European competitiveness. They note, however, that ways of arriving at those findings is much less clear. The researchers who participated in the consultation claim some barriers still exist for meaningful public/private collaboration to take place. They pointed to institutional and cultural factors as some of the main difficulties they encountered when involved in international collaboration.

One major issue respondents referred to is the difficulty associated with coordinating interests between the public and private sectors. This is particularly evident when public research organisations (PROs) and private industry negotiate management of intellectual property rights (IPR) resulting from collaborative research and the sharing any profit gained from them.

A member of a PRO had the following to say about interaction between universities and private industry.

“ Poor understanding of the constraints and missions of the other party, different mind set and attitudes, sometimes conflicts of interest. The underfunded universities are often in a poor bargaining position to achieve an equitable deal. There is a lack of professionalism in dealing with the interaction (on both sides).”

IPR ownership indeed proved to be a contentious issue. PROs claimed that they faced certain difficulties balancing their desire to keep research findings secret to protect their market value against researchers' desire to make them public. Fifty-three percent of respondents cited IPR ownership regimes as a research-related barrier to cooperation and 43% claimed joint-ownership was problematic.

In addition to financial squabbling, respondents said that transnational cooperation encounters different forms of cultural barriers, most importantly that of language. Others factors hindering the further development of international cooperation involves legal discrepancies between states and difficulties finding partners.

A majority of those participating in the consultation felt that urgent attention was required to deal with the harmonisation of IPR ownership across sectors and across borders. In particular, they pointed to a Community Patent as a possible solution when dealing with international cooperation-realted IPR issues. This reflects similar responses found in previous consultations conducted by the Commission.

Attention was also given to the idea of professional technology transfer officers to aid in managing cooperation between the public and private sectors. Seventy-five percent of respondents felt the development of a such a position would be an advantage.

Important conclusions drawn from the consultation include:

·Increased incentives for PRO staff to participate in public/private research
·More professional technology transfer officers
·More transnational exchange of staff between public and private sector employees

To address the findings, the Commission is drafting a Communication concerning knowledge transfer, a strengthened Marie Curie scheme in order to further promote additional public-private staff exchanges across Europe, and additional transnational networking and partner finding through the Innovation Relay Centre network.

Convert article(s) to PDF

No article selected


loading


Search articles

Notes:
To restrict search results to articles in the Information Centre, i.e. this site, use this search box rather than the one at the top of the page.

After searching, you can expand the results to include the whole Research and Innovation web site, or another section of it, or all Europa, afterwards without searching again.

Please note that new content may take a few days to be indexed by the search engine and therefore to appear in the results.

Print Version
Share this article
See also

Commission Draft report





  Top   Research Information Center