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In today's Morning Brief:

Science diplomacy as a tool for impact

In an interesting article in Science Business, Jean-Claude Burgelman (former coordinator of the open science policy at the EC and now lecturer at the Free University of Brussels) and Luk Van Langenhove, advocated the extension of the concept of science diplomacy published in the landmark report by the UK Royal Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science published in 2010, in which they established the distinctions between three varieties of science diplomacy:

  • Science for diplomacy, where science is used as a soft power tool.
  • Science in diplomacy, where scientists advise ministries of foreign affairs.
  • Diplomacy for science, where diplomacy supports international scientific collaborations.

Their goal is to include “open knowledge diplomacy” as a tool used by scientists to better address today’s societal grand challenges. This means scientists advocating and building upon “knowledge commons” in a specific knowledge domain, geared towards specific societal challenges. The key issue here is that there are many hurdles along the way and the main one is the coupling of research careers to outdated metrics of career progression. “Now it is quasi exclusively focused on producing science (the impact factor) but it should include other impacts as well. If my science contributes to a clean battery, without necessarily resulting in a top ranked publication, the former should be rated as high as the latter.”. Read more here.

 

European Institute of Innovation and Technology launches initiative to help universities become regional innovation engines

The Innovation Capacity Building for Higher Education pilot call is looking for universities to put forward plans to strengthen their links to business and research organisations; develop services to support translation and commercialisation of academic research; enhance the quality of entrepreneurial education they provide; and generate relevant knowledge and expertise. The scope of the call is broad, allowing different needs to be accommodated, said Martin Kern, director of EIT.

Consortia of up to three universities and one other organisation are invited to apply. Twenty three selected projects will have six months to draft initial plans and begin implementation. For this phase, the projects will receive up to €400,000. If they are successful, they can move to the next phase and secure another €800,000. Applications are accepted until 25 May, and the six-month phase one starts in July. In their applications, consortia must demonstrate that they can make a meaningful contribution to the work of least two of EIT’s Knowledge and Innovation Communities (KICs), and commit to predefined objectives, for example, supporting a minimum of two start-up or scale-up companies, training a minimum 130 students in innovation and entrepreneurship, or training a minimum 12 academic staff.

 

Commission awards 2,885 researchers seal of excellence certificates

The European Commission has awarded 2,885 researchers, who applied for the 2020 Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) individual grants, the Seal of Excellence Certificate, a consolation prize for proposals that scored high but could not be financed due to a lack of sufficient funds.

The seal of excellence is meant to help researchers secure funding from alternative sources, such as EU regional funds and national programmes. The seal does not guarantee funding, but twelve EU countries have special schemes to support the awardees.

 

Energy integration event

Euractiv will host today at 2.30 CEST the virtual conference “Sector Integration: What will energy system integration look like in different EU Member States?”. The discussion will be focused on how the integration of energy systems will be instrumental to reach the EU 2050 climate targets. Intervening in the debate, will be representatives of the Commission’s DG ENER, the EP, the think tank E3G, the non-for-profit association Euroheat & Power, and the multinational Danfoss Climate Solutions. Registration is still open and available here.

 

EU matchmaking event to expand the production of COVID-19 vaccines

The European Commission has hosted yesterday the first pan-European matchmaking event to ramp-up vaccine production and distribution. The event saw the participation of over 300 companies from 25 EU member states, including contract development and manufacturing organisations, fill and finish, equipment producers. The matchmaking event is organised by the European Cluster Collaboration Platform in partnership with the Council of European BioRegions (CEBR) and the European Cluster Alliance (ECA), which also supported the Commission in analysing and identifying EU capacities for COVID-19 vaccines production, on the basis of which companies were invited to participate in the matchmaking.

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23/9/2021: EU Partnerships update, HUB workshop on AI & Robotics, ERA Pact for R&I, Green Deal Series events & other relevant EU R&I news bytes

In today’s Morning Brief:
– European Partnerships – Update on the Legislative Process
– HUB workshop on PPP AI & Robotics
– ERA Pact for R&I – next steps
– Various Running ERA Studies of Interest
– MEPs against inclusion of ‘do no significant harm’ principle in Horizon Europe
– UK sets out ‘pro-innovation’ AI rules, in further move away from Brussels
– Europeans strongly support science and technology according to new Eurobarometer survey
– Agriculture: Launch of an annual EU organic day
– More on the State of the Union address
– Pathways to the future – A follow-up to “Universities without walls – A vision for 2030”
– Fraunhofer organises Green Deal Series: “Offshore Wind as a cornerstone of the European Green Deal” on 12 October 2021

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21/9/2021: Reform of the Research Assessment System, CH to fund ERC proposals, Open Access, Quantum investments, new U-Multirank HE cooperation index

In today’s Morning Brief:
– Reform of the Research Assessment System
– Switzerland will temporarily fund ERC proposals with own funds
– Monitoring the open access policy of Horizon 2020
– UK starts construction of new £93 million quantum computing centre
– New ERC President, Maria Leptin, to take over on 1st November
– U-Multirank creates new ‘Higher Education Cooperation Index’
– 2022: Year of Youth and ERASMUS as a tool to promote European Education Area

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20/9/2021: Work as an Expert, State of the Union address – key R&I issues, Tech and Strategic Autonomy, European Health Union, New EU Bauhaus, Meat Atlas, Elections that will define the Future of Europe

In today’s Morning Brief:
– Work as an expert – European Defence Fund
– State of the Union address by the President of the EC: key takeaways for R&I
– Technology sovereignty in practice: EC pushes chip building and cyberdefence
– Shaping and securing the EU’s Open Strategic Autonomy by 2040 and beyond
– European Health Union and the new HERA (European Health Emergency preparedness and Response Authority)
– €85M investment in 2022 for New European Bauhaus project
– Meat Atlas: facts and figures about the animals we eat
– The elections that will define the future of Europe and the EU PermReps dancing chairs

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