Science Europe Activity on Spreading Excellence in R&I and Widening Participation in European Programmes
Substantial discrepancies exist in European research and innovation capacity. In line with the 2022 Workplan and in a renewed effort to support capacity-building in European countries with lower R&I performance, the SE Office is launching a series of activities that will be led in close collaboration with the Task Force on Widening Participation and Spreading Excellence.
The Task Force on Widening Participation and Spreading Excellence was created within Science Europe's Working Group on Horizon Europe. It is composed of experts from FCT, NCN, UEFISCDI, ELKH, SNSF, and ETAG.
Together with the SE Office, the task force is taking forward the work initiated in 2020, when Science Europe Members expressed their interest in the topic of capacity building across Europe (known as ’Widening/Spreading’ actions in the framework of Horizon Europe).
Four main interest lines were identified:
- Getting additional information on the ‘Widening/Spreading’ instruments under Horizon Europe (instruments, expected support measures, and so on).
- Experience sharing and mutual learning among Science Europe Member Organisations and other stakeholders on the preparation, implementation, and outcomes of ‘Widening/Spreading’ projects.
- Exchange on national programmes and instruments that
have a ‘Widening/Spreading’ objective.
- Getting more information on synergies and more specifically on the use of European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) for ‘Widening/Spreading’ purposes.
The current plan includes two internal workshops providing, among others, additional information on the ‘Widening/Spreading’ instruments under Horizon Europe, the synergies, and the use of the European Structural and Investment Funds for R&I purposes. Interactive sessions will be dedicated to mutual learning and experience sharing among participants on the management of ‘Widening/Spreading’ projects, but also on national programmes and instruments that aim to support capacity building in so-called ‘widening countries’.
A possible major event in the framework of the Czech Presidency of the Council of the EU is currently under discussion.