On 14 December 2018, Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum (EaP CSF) participated in the 6th EaP Panel on Research and Innovation (R&I) in Brussels, Belgium. The Panel brought together EU stakeholders – EEAS, DGs NEAR and RTD as well as specialist agencies, such as European Research Council (ERCEA), European Innovation Council (EiC) or Executive Agency for Small and Medium Enterprises (EASME) to discuss the current state of play and their priorities for the upcoming year.
Jointly representing EaP CSF, Oleg Shatberashvili (ESDIG – Association “European Studies for Innovative Development of Georgia”) and Volodymyr Nochvai (Civic Union “Center for innovation development”, Ukraine) submitted a position paper, which outlines a number of recommendations addressed to policy-makers and other attendees of the Panel. The paper reiterates some of the earlier points, made at the EaP Research and Innovation Panel event, “EU4Innovation – Fostering Research-Industry Partnerships”, held on 1 October 2018 in Tbilisi, Georgia. There is a need for more integration, particularly when it comes to European Research Area (ERA) and aligning national research systems, we can learn from the paper.
Shatberashvili and Nochvai point out that “the EaP countries do not participate in the majority of the European research infrastructures“. Citing the Open Science (OS) concept as an example, there are a number of areas where legislation is still lagging behind – and what is more, stands in the way of possible cooperation with international partners. While there is some potential for progress through programmes like Horizon 2020 Policy Support Facility (PSF), the only long-term solution to the current situation is the adoption of more research and outcome-oriented policies by the EaP governments, claims the paper.