REA publishes progress report on R&I projects of European Alliances
|14 Jun 2023
The European Research Executive Agency (REA) published last April a report on the progress of the first 17 R&I projects of European Alliances (“SwafS” call projects), analysing their progress towards institutional transformation in seven areas called “transformational modules”.
The report is based on policy briefs written by the Alliances themselves (see Arqus RI “ERA policy brief”) as well as the mid-term reports and reviewer assessments of the 17 projects.
It addresses the challenges faced by the alliances with cooperation, identifies good practices and tangible progress made in implementing transformational changes, and proposes recommendations for the various transformation modules.
The seven modules aim to: (1) develop a common research and innovation agenda, (2) strengthen human capital, (3) share research infrastructures, (4) engage non-academic actors, (5) mainstream Open Science; (6) engage citizens and society; and (7) explore joint structures.
The report also contains a set of general comments and conclusions by the authors of the report (external consultants commissioned by REA), including reference to the request by Alliances of continued financial support “with a joint funding roadmap under Horizon Europe in synergy with Erasmus+ programmes” (see Executive Summary of the report).
A good practice in Arqus R.I. is highlighted in relation to the transformational module citizen & societal engagement. Here the engagement of non-academic stakeholders and involvement of citizens in research agenda setting is mentioned, which tested the Toolbox for Open Research Agenda Setting in seven pilot workshops and fed the insights gained into the Recommendations on Open Research Agenda Setting (containing an update of the Toolbox).
The development of the Arqus Alliance Joint Research Action Plan (JRAP) was commended in the area of developing a common R&I agenda, as means to “implement and develop […] common research and innovation agenda”. The 2023 update of the JRAP should be approved by the Arqus Rectors’ Council shortly.
In relation to mainstreaming open science, the report mentions Arqus RI as one of the projects that have carried out a “mapping exercise of policies and practices for Open Science among their members”, pointing out that “this allows institutions to identify gaps and benchmark policies and practices to begin tracking progress”. This mapping fed into to the Recommendations to enhance SwafS and Open Science in Arqus.
In relation to engaging non-academic actors, Arqus RI was commended for its approach to re-thinking transfer from an innovative and co-creation perspective, and the authors quoted the Arqus RI mid-term report, which pointed out “the importance of clarifying concepts and establishing shared knowledge in relation to partner university expectations, practices, skills/training needs, and technology transfer”, as essential to avoid misunderstandings and false starts.
The report also includes Arqus R.I in those projects that have made tangible progress in exploring joint university structures, through “mutual learning in their cooperation in joint structures (at governance, management and research levels) and […] showing growing awareness and understanding in the systems and structures in their institutions as well as in developing and strengthening common alliance structures”.
See full report here.
See Executive Summary here: