News archive - Final Report of the Expert Group on Synergies between FP7, the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme and the Cohesion Policy Funds

The Synergies Expert Group (SEG) published its final report on Synergies between FP7, the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme and the Cohesion Policy Fund. The Synergies Expert Group (SEG) started its work in October 2010 with the task to produce recommendations: for the development of ‘synergies in practice’ for the current programming period; concerning enhanced “synergies of policies and programmes” for R&D, innovation and cohesion for the next programming period, and in particular for the future of the two regional actions in FP7, Regions of Knowledge (RoK) and the Research Potential (REGPOT).

Executive Summary

"The issue of synergies between the Framework Programme (FP), the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme (CIP), and the Structural Funds (SF) has been on the agenda at European level for several years and has been addressed and analysed by different bodies. The present exercise included also the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT) and parts of the Life-Long Learning Programme (LLP) in its deliberations and analyses.

The SEG defined ‘synergies’ as the alignment of and cooperation between policy frameworks, programmes and actions allowing more and better attainment of their objectives. The general policy context is defined by the Europe 2020 strategy and the Innovation Union flagship initiative and its commitments. Europe 2020 defines the key role of research, technological development, and demonstration (RTD) as well as of innovation as among the most important engines for growth. Europe 2020 puts forward three mutually reinforcing priorities: smart, sustainable and inclusive growth. The focus of the Innovation Union flagship initiative is on knowledge production and innovation. The EU Budget Review calls for the development of common strategic frameworks encompassing the relevant programmes.

The concept of ‘innovation’ and the ‘innovation systems approach’ formed the bases for both the SEG’s analyses of the programmes and actions and the formulation of recommendations. The SEG paid specific attention to the importance of the ‘locationbased’ dimension of innovation and to the fact that knowledge-spillovers decrease with distance. European research and innovation policies support transnational activities. For regional policies the concept of ‘local-global connectedness’ is important.

The main issues to be addressed were identified by the SEG as follows:

  • The fragmentation of innovation policies at EU level;
  • The sub-optimal coordination of research and innovation as well as cohesion policies at European, national and regional level, both within and between these levels;
  • A lack of common strategies in accordance with the orientations of Europe 2020;
  • A lack of a coherent and interacting governance structure;
  • Weak complementarities and compatibilities as well as interoperability of policies and programmes, particularly regarding the regional dimension in research and innovation policy and the research and innovation dimension in regional policy;
  • A lack of instruments aimed at supporting the pooling of European and national funds;
  • Poor communication, coordination and cooperation between actors and stakeholders at all levels.

For the main conclusions and recommendations of the SEG please refer to the executive summary of the report. The full report can be downloaded below. 

Geographical focus
  • Europe
  • European Union (EU 27)

Entry created by Ines Marinkovic on July 4, 2011
Modified on July 3, 2011