On 20 October 2016, the European Commission has launched a public stakeholder consultation which will feed into the interim evaluation of Horizon 2020, the EU's €77 billion research and innovation funding scheme running from 2014 to 2020. This interim evaluation will help improve the functioning of Horizon 2020, and will also be an important element in preparations of a next EU research and innovation programme.
Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said: 'I hope as many people as possible will use the chance to have their say on Horizon 2020, its first three years and its future direction. We are already analysing available data, facts and figures. But in order to have a full overview, it is very important to get direct feedback from researchers, entrepreneurs, innovators, citizens and all types of organisations that have participated in the programme.'
Working from 2014 to 2020 with a budget of nearly €77 billion, Horizon 2020 is one of the largest research and innovation schemes worldwide. In its first two years, the programme attracted over 76 thousand eligible proposals. Over 9000 grant agreements were signed by 1 September 2016 for calls with deadlines in 2014 and 2015, allocating almost €16 billion to boosting excellent science, creating industrial leadership and tackling societal challenges. Almost a half of successful applicants are newcomers to the programme.
The public stakeholder consultation on the interim evaluation of Horizon 2020 will be open until 15 January 2017. A parallel consultation on the Euratom Research and Training Programme has also been launched with the same closing date. Furthermore, a stakeholder consultation on the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) is running until 20 November 2016, and a consultation on public-public and public-private partnerships under Horizon 2020 will also be launched in the near future. The interim evaluation will also draw on existing surveys and consultations, including on simplification and on a European Innovation Council.
The Horizon 2020 Regulation stipulates that the European Commission has to carry out an interim evaluation of the programme by 31 December 2017. It will deliver:
- A Staff Working Document which will present and summarise all the evidence gathered, factual evaluation results and lessons learnt for the future
- A report from a High Level Group with strategic conclusions on further boosting the impact of EU research and innovation funding, and a vision for future EU research and innovation
- A Communication from the Commission on the key evaluation results, observations on the report of the High Level Group, and implementation of the recommendations of the ex-post evaluation of FP7, the predecessor of Horizon 2020
Source: European Commission