Pan European Networks - Horizon 2020 - page 242

common interests and contributing to growth and economic prosperity in
both Canada and Europe, all of which Research Canada supports.
In September 2014, Canada and the EU concluded negotiations on a
strategic partnership agreement. The SPA is an important collaborative
framework to strengthen our relations and deepen our foreign policy co-
operation, and provides a platform for joint action on global issues. The
SPA will contribute to stronger ties in areas such as research and
innovation and science and technology.
Horizon 2020
There were more Canadian applicants (1,118) and participants (298) in
the Seventh Framework Programme than in all previous framework
programmes combined. The success rate of 27% was well above the
norm, and 41% of those in multidisciplinary collaborative projects received
European funding. There are now 37 Canadian universities with at least
one researcher in a successful framework programme project.
I S S U E S I X
H O R I Z O N 2 0 2 0 P R O J E C T S : P O R TA L
Deborah Gordon-El-Bihbety
Research Canada
B R OW S E
H O R I Z O N
2 0 2 0
242
C A N A D A
Canadians are well positioned for Horizon
2020, and the country has been targeted as an
important partner in the work programmes,
specifically in the area of health research. CIHR
has been gainfully involved through a series of
health research roundtables. Health research,
and the very close co-operation with CIHR, will
be a key area of engagement in the first years
of Horizon 2020. Having built the framework
programme around major societal challenges,
such as an ageing population, food security and
energy efficiency, the EU is attaching high
importance to embedding socioeconomic,
health sciences and humanities into the work
programme, which Research Canada applauds.
On the health innovation side, Horizon 2020
supports SMEs with a new instrument that runs
throughout various funded research and
innovation fields, so it should be easier for Life
Sciences SMEs, for example, to find
opportunities in many calls.
Research Canada is pleased that both the EU
and Canada are working toward goals to
combat HIV/AIDS and malaria as our
organisation focuses its attention in 2015 on
vaccine development and global health
research and innovation through our Health
Research Caucus, a non-partisan forum for
parliamentarians to learn more about health
research and health innovation.
Canada looks forward to its on-going
partnerships with the EU as we transform our
commodity-based economy to one based on
providing a greatly expanded number of
markets with an increased variety of goods and
services where firms must compete primarily
through product and marketing innovation. As
more Canadian and European firms, out of
sheer necessity, develop strategies that focus
on innovation, they will create a much more
powerful ‘business pull’ on Canada’s as well as
Europe’s strong S&T capacity. We look forward
to a partnership that helps both the EU and
Canada be the best in R&I.
Seizing the challenge
Cash-starved governments are retreating
from their traditional role in funding the high-
risk, commercially unviable science that fuels
innovation at a time when policy makers are
most concerned about strengthening our
knowledge economy, accelerating innovation
and overcoming Canada’s yawning
productivity gap.
Academia, responding to the heightened expectations of policy
makers, funders and the public, is increasingly facing pressure to
demonstrate research relevance and impact, without compromising
a fundamental commitment to the sometimes esoteric, and
generally expensive, exploratory science from which discovery and
invention spring. Global industry, having entered an era of
unprecedented consolidation and corporate re-engineering, faces
reimbursement, productivity and competitive barriers that
undermine the case for R&D investment in Canada. At the same
time, our home grown Life Sciences companies are unable to
remain and thrive in Canada without the capital and commercial
support of a diverse and integrated industrial cluster. Furthermore,
the not-for-profit sector, increasingly called upon to fill gaps in the
research funding environment, must maintain its foremost
accountability to patient impact in a highly competitive and rapidly
evolving philanthropic environment.
Rising to these sector-specific challenges will not be possible if we
fail to act in a manner that recognises how inextricably linked these
challenges are. Solutions must harness and strengthen the
interdependencies across government, academia, industry and the
not-for-profit sector; recognise that innovations in health
technology cannot flourish without changes in the structure of the
health system and the context in which care is delivered; and take
a balanced approach to investment in fundamental and applied
health research across the discovery to practice continuum.
Dr Ryan Wiley
Board Chair, Research Canada
©ResearchCanada
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