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Exploring and setting research agendas


John Brennan (Chair), Centre for Higher Education Research and Information, The ... Christine Musselin, Fr. Manfred Prenzel, De (SCSS Rapporteur) Ulrich Teichler, De ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Exploring and setting research agendas

  • Exploring and setting research agendas
  • ESF Forward Looks in the EU and global contexts
  • Dr. Henk Stronkhorst, Head of Social Sciences
  • VIII Bled Forum on Europe
  • Foresight Conference Governing Futures -

ESF Membership
  • 76 Member Organisationsin 30 countries, beyond
    the European Union.
  • Research funding organisations
  • Research performing organisations
  • Academies

ESF Mission
  • ESF provides a common platform for its Member
    Organisations (MOs) in order to
  • Advance European research
  • Explore new directions for research at the
    European level
  • Through its activities, ESF serves the needs of
    the European research community in a global

Three decades of science
  • Established 1974
  • Independent, non-governmental
  • Offices in Strasbourg and Brussels
  • Budget 41M
  • Networking Budget 3B

Scientific Domains
  • Physical and Engineering Sciences
  • Life, Earth and Environmental Sciences
  • Medical Sciences
  • Humanities
  • Social Sciences
  • Space Sciences
  • Marine Science
  • Polar Science

ESF portfolio of instruments
ESF Activities
Forward Look definition1
  • FS/FL is a systematic and participatory process
    resulting, through collective learning, in a
    medium to long-term vision building of the forces
    shaping the future.
  • It provides an authoritative and trustworthy
    advice in policy formulation, planning and
    decision making.
  • It is a condition for quicker progress. 1. this
    is a proposed definition by an ESF Working Group

Aspiration of ESF with FLs
  • ESF is still developing its Forward Look
    instruments and the potential impact these may
    have, also for Research Infrastructure
  • ESFs aspiration is to mirror, or even improve,
    within Europe the quality and authority of the
    FLs undertaken by the American National Academies
    of Science.
  • To guarantee quality and authority, one must
    involve the very best scientists, world-wide.

Format of Forward Looks
  • Activities preparatory study/expert groups, high
    level overview papers, workshops and meetings
  • Main event high visibility conference
  • Outputs Policy Briefings, major reports, action
  • Lead time 12-24 months
  • Average budget k 100-150

Characteristics and first generation of Forward
  • Medium - long term scientific perspectives
  • Multidisciplinary topics viewed from a European
  • Bring together leading scientists and policy
  • Lead to authoritative reports and action plans
    for research and research infrastructure
  • Earth System Science
  • Cultural Diversity
  • Immigration and Identity
  • Urban Science
  • Nanomedicine
  • Nanosciences and IT
  • Systems Biology

FL Earth System Science Recommendations
  • Develop flagship projects
  • Create a European Global Change Board
  • Specific recommendations
  • Collaboration between natural and social sciences
  • Interface science and policy
  • Monitoring and data
  • Capacity building

Follow-up initiatives
  • Earth System/Global Change
  • EUROCORES on Climate Change and Biodiversity
  • EC Symposium May 2004 recommended Establish
    mechanisms for consultation among EC, ESF and
    ESSP on the integration of GC research
  • ERA-NET application on Global Change has been
  • Cultural Diversity
  • ESF Scientific Network ISPP FP6 NoE IMISCOE

Forward Look Nanomedicine Priority areas next
10 yrs
  • Science
  • Cell as 3-D complex
  • Nanosensing of multiple, complex analytics for in
    vitro measurement of biochemical, genomic and
    proteomic networks
  • Nanosensing in vivo with telemetrically
    controlled mobile sensors
  • Rapid fingerprinting of all components in blood

Forward Look Nanomedicine Priority areas next
10 yrs
  • Communication
  • Promotion of more truly transdisciplinary
    conferences. EU programmes seldom show alignment
  • Scientifically qualified politicians are not
    common. Serious effort needs to be made in
    addressing politicians by opinion leaders in
  • There should be a clearer articulation and better
    communication of the benefits of embracing
  • The scientific community should engage in regular
    dialogue with the general public, and address
    public concerns early. There is a need for the
    clear presentation of facts

FL Topics 2005
  • Launch in 2006
  • European Food Systems in a Changing World
  • European Computational Science Forum
  • Higher Education in Europe beyond 2010 (HELF)
  • Launch in 2007
  • RNA World
  • Security Advancing a Framework for Enquiry

Higher Education Looking Forward (HELF) title
  • Full title
  • Higher Education in Europe beyond
    2010Resolving Conflicting Social and Economic

Higher Education Looking Forward (HELF) background
  • Characteristics of HE research
  • Policy driven and interdisciplinary
  • Fuzzy boundaries between researchers and other
  • Quite fragmented research communities
  • HELF aiming to bring disparate communities
    together in order to develop a scientific agenda
    for future higher education research which can be
    set alongside the policy agenda

HELF Organising Committee
  • John Brennan (Chair), Centre for Higher Education
    Research and Information, The Open University, UK
  • Luca Codignola, It (SCH Rappporteur)
  • Jürgen Enders, Nl
  • Christine Musselin, Fr
  • Manfred Prenzel, De (SCSS Rapporteur)
  • Ulrich Teichler, De
  • Jussi Välimaa, Fi
  • Henk Stronkhorst, FL Coordinator

Five HELF Themes
  • HE and needs of knowledge society
  • HE and the achievement of equity and social
  • HE and its communities interconnections
  • Steering and governance of HE
  • Differentiation and diversity of institutional
    forms and professional roles

FL Topics 2006/2007
  • - Invitation to submit topics to the ESF Member
    Organisations in summer 2006
  • - Decision by the ESF Governing Council on topics
    in April 2007
  • - Potential new Forward Looks in fields such as
    Ageing and
  • Re-emergence of Religion as a Social Force,
    and several in the field of medical, life and
    natural sciences

Lessons learned 1
  • Foresight must be visible, transparent and
  • Interesting science is not enough. There must be
    a specific problem, a challenge or an opportunity
  • Resolve scientific disputes elsewhere first
  • Boundaries must be correctly chosen, especially
    given the increasing links between fields

Lessons learned 2
  • Several countries should be interested to ensure
    prospect for success
  • Recommendations should be directed to the right
    actor avoid someone should do something
  • Decision makers should be involved in project
    activities to ensure future impact
  • A Foresight Report is just the beginning it
    requires subsequent promotion and publicity to
    ensure impact on science policy decision

ESF Forward Looks the future
  • ESF Forward Looks should directly impact on
    European science policy
  • Open issues
  • How to best identify the topics?
  • How to ensure the authority?
  • How to engage the scientific community at the
    highest level?
  • How to create the impact?

  • www.esf.org

ESF Scientific Forward Looks
  • The ESFs Forward Looks are key in the
    development of strong links between the European
    scientific community and science policy makers.
  • The purpose of a Forward Look is to define
    research agendas and priorities in a particular
    research domain and to communicate the results to
    research funders.
  • The themes are selected on the basis of their
    importance to European research
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