News archive - The German EU Council Presidency 2007

Erika Rost from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research reports for the eJournal winter 06/07 on the research priorities of the German EU Council Presidency (Success through research) and the upcoming Steering Platform Meeting on March 29, 2007 in Berlin.

Education, research and technology are essential for the future of Europe as a basis for sustainable growth, increased employment, and cultural and social cohesion. The German Council Presidency, in order to take into account the question of the future of Europe and its pending constitutional process will operate within the following general framework in the fields of education and research:

  • the Lisbon Strategy to strengthen Europe's competitiveness,
  • the 50th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome on March 25, 2007,
  • the launch of the Lifelong Learning Programme and greater synergy between national and European measures,
  • the launch of the Seventh Research Framework Programme (FP7) and the establishment of the European Research Council (ERC) and the Security Research Programme.

“Mit Forschung gewinnen” – “Success through research”
The review of the EU budgets, which is due in 2008, offers an opportunity for a in-depth examination of the needs and requirements of research in all the areas mentioned. The aim is to ensure not only that the 3 % target is achieved (which is the task of the Member States) but also that investments in research are increased at European level.
The new Research Framework Programme will include for the first time the key global issue of security under the thematic priority 'Security Research'.
And for the very first time, all the Specific Programmes of the Research Framework Programme will be open to cooperation with third countries. Following the adoption of FP7, the European Commission supported by the German Presidency will present a Communication during this Presidency concerning the further development of the European Research Area.
Until FP7, basic research had been reserved for national funding, whereas the focus of the FP was always on industrial research. A new chapter for European research funding is opened with the establishment of the ERC. The new knowledge that will be generated will provide a starting point for future innovations and for establishing and opening up markets. Excellent frontier research based innovations will help to overcome barriers, create new jobs and secure existing jobs, acting as an important element of the value added chain.
Specific initiatives of the German Council Presidency are directed towards the development of the European Research Area e.g. the discussion of the better use of structural funds concerning FP7 and of intellectual property rights at public research and higher education institutions.
For more information follow the link at

Steering Platform on Research for the Western Balkan Countries
The German Council Presidency agrees with the Team Presidencies (Portugal and Slovenia) to continue the development of the European perspective of the Western Balkan countries.
Regarding research, the integration of the Western Balkans in the European Research Area through instruments like the SEE-ERA.NET and the support of interregional cooperation is a priority for the cooperation of the German Federal Ministry on Education and Research with the WBCs.
In June 2006, the European Commission and the Austrian EU Council Presidency jointly launched the Steering Platform on research for the Western Balkan countries in Vienna.
The Steering Platform is to be used as a forum to bring together ideas and means and share information and experience, as was said in Vienna. To this end, the German EU Presidency and the European Commission are currently inviting the Western Balkan countries and the European Member States to attend the next meeting of the Steering Platform. It will take pace in Berlin on March 29, 2007, back to back with the SEE-ERA.NET Steering Board Meeting. The German Presidency wishes to contribute to the successful work of the Steering Platform.

Article published in eJournal winter 06/07.

Entry created by Elke Dall on March 6, 2007
Modified on March 6, 2007