EuropeAid aims to bridge the gap between policy & research and promoting the European perspective on development issues in the international arena, on the basis of knowledge, evidence based research and scientific excellence.
Public policies should wherever possible be grounded in the best evidence available. Effective translation of research into policy requires addressing the different cultures surrounding those carrying out research and those who might be able to use it. Early and ongoing involvement of relevant policy makers in the designing and conducting of research is the best way to ensure that the findings are put into practice. Establishing and maintaining links between both sides as well as more comprehensive communication are therefore essential.
EuropeAid activities to mobilise European research for development policies include:
- the European Report on Development, a flagship report which provides a research-based perspective and stimulates debate on key development topics
- the Scientific Advisory Board for EU development policy, one of many tools for interacting with the scientific community.
- short term studies, stakeholder consultations, conferences, technical assistance, etc. to strengthen analysis of EU development policy & implementation and better identify innovative approaches and policy issues.
- cooperation with the European Commission's Directorate-General for Research and Innovation on:
- EU multiannual framework programmes for research (FP7 – 2007-2013, €32 billion, currently Horizon 2020) which seek to ensure coherence of EU policies & complementarity of programmes and achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
- Horizon 2020 governance structure in order to target research for policy needs, harness knowledge for development and identify synergies between EU development policies and research programmes.
The EU has funded research projects such as NOPOOR (building new knowledge on poverty in developing countries) and GO4HEALTH (global health and the post 2015 agenda). See EU international strategy for research & innovation
Interacting with the scientific community
Opportunities to broker knowledge between the scientific community and policy-makers – such as the Commission – include outreach to EU countries' development researchers, the Scientific Advisory Board, monitoring of EU-funded research projects and workshops & conferences.
- adoption of the Agenda for Change communication, when a high‑level conference was held bringing together MEPs, NGOs, national governments and partner countries
- consultations in connection with the European Report on Development, 3rd (Confronting Scarcity) and 4th (post-2015) editions.