Scientists petition for change
The European Life Sciences Organisation delivered a petition with 4500 names on it to the European Commission. The petition contained the following text:
The EC decrease the administrative burden associated with its Framework Programmes by simplifying application procedures and using grants rather than contracts, so scientists have more time for the real scientific work.
The EU put pressure on national governments to open their academic and scientific funding to applicants working in any of the member states of Europe, so that the European Research Area can become a reality.
The EC propose legislation to increase gradually European investment in research and development to 3% of the mean Gross National Product (a principle already agreed by the European Council of Ministers). Half of this investment (i.e. 1.5%) should be provided from public funds.
A European funding agency for basic research be created independent of the national governments and funded by the EC, national funding agencies and other stakeholders to stimulate, foster and fund basic, investigator-driven European research.
The intention, according to the ELSO, is that there should be a greater focus on basic, long-term research, to young scientists, to small networks and individual grants, to innovation and creativity.
Visit the ELSO website here.
Responses from the Commission will be posted here when they are made available.