A few days ago, I read a document from the European Commission published in march of 2010, that defines a new strategy to become stronger from the economic and financial crisis.
It highlights that current trends show signs of integration fatigue and disenchantment regarding the single market and that the crisis has added temptations of economic nationalism.
This new strategy is based on the fact that Europe has many strengths: talented workforce, powerful technological and industrial base, internal market and a single currency that has successfully helped us to resist the worst part of the crisis.
The European commission’s purposes are five measurable targets for 2020:
– For employment
– For research and innovation
– For climate change and energy
– For education
– For combating poverty
They are ambitious, but may be attainable with a real ownership by European leaders and institutions. A new agenda requires a coordinated European response, including social partners and civil society.
This five targets, can be translated to many goals or challenges clearly defined for 2020, they are:
– The 75% of the population aged 20-64 should be employed
– 3% of the EU’s GDP should be invested in R&D
– The “20/20/20” climate/energy targets should be met (including the increase to 30% of emissions reduction if the conditions are right).
– The share of early school leavers should be under 10% and at least 40% of the younger generation should have a tertiary degree.
– 20 million less people should be at the risk of poverty.
This EU goals must be translated into national and regional targets and trajectories.
About R&D, the commission will work:
At EU level:
– To complete de ERA, to develop a strategic research agenda focused on challenges such as energy security, transport, climate change and resource efficiency, health and ageing, environmentally-friendly production methods and land management, and to enhance joint programming with members states and regions.
– To improve framework conditions for business to innovate (patents, copyright and trademarks, intellectual property, and so on).
– Improve the collaboration between EU and national levels to speed up the development and deployment of the technologies needed to meet the challenges identified.
– To promote knowledge partnerships and strengthen links between education, business, research and innovation to promote entrepreneurship by supporting young innovative companies.
At national level, Member states will need:
– To reform national (and regional) R&D and innovation systems to foster excellence and smart specializations reinforce cooperation between universities, research and business.
– To ensure a sufficient supply of science, maths and engineering graduates and to focus school curricula on creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship.
– To prioritize knowledge expenditure, including by using tax incentives and other financial instruments to promote greater private R&D investments.
Other challenges are increase the reporting and evaluation to the EU.