Sustainable development: a challenge for EU R&D

The European Commission DG Research organises a conference on “Sustainable Development: A Challenge for European Research” on 26-28 May 2009, in Brussels.

Call for papers

For the preparation of this conference, a call for papers has been published with a deadline for submission on 15 January 2009.

Outline of the conference

One of the rationales for and purpose of funding R&D on the EU budget is to serve EU policy needs, while strengthening the scientific and technological basis of the European industry and reinforcing its competitiveness. In view of the strong political will expressed by the European Council to engage on a sustainable path and the priority given to climate change and clean energy, European research is bound to contribute to sustainable development.

Putting European R&D at the service of sustainable development is also needed from a societal point of view. Indeed, there is rising concern about the relationship between science and society. Today's surveys show that Europeans have become less attracted by science or less confident that science brings solutions. If the level of public funding for research is to be maintained and indeed increased, it must be ensured and demonstrated that research is bringing value to the citizens, on substantial and tangible issues beyond competitiveness and jobs.

Coming close to mid-term of FP7 implementation, this 3-day conference will take stock of the progress made so far and identify ways and means for putting the European research system at the service of sustainable development.

With this in mind, the conference will initiate a structured dialogue on how to reform European research to best respond to sustainable development challenges. It will also investigate ways for improving the science-policy link and the relationship between science and society.

More information on the conference – programme, speakers, registration, etc. – will be available soon. If you are interested in receiving updates on the conference when they become available, please send an email to rtd-sd-conference@ec.europa.eu.