In 2012, the European Commission clearly communicated that the EU needed a strategic approach to enhance and focus on the EU’s international cooperation activities in research and innovation in particular with a view to preparing for the implementation of the new Horizon 2020 framework. The Communication provides a brief overview over the Union’s history in promoting research cooperation across borders as well as related examples (e.g. CERN, Marie Curie actions or Joint Research Centres). Yet, the Seventh Framework Programme concludes that there needs to be an intensification of international cooperation activates that focuses on activities of mutual interest and on engaging with partners outside Europe on equal terms. Against this background, the Commission identifies several objectives of the Union’s international cooperation with third countries, explains a set of valuable instruments in this regard (such as policy dialogue or funding instruments) and puts forward suggestions how the scale and scope of international cooperation activities can be coordinated with other policy areas and international fora.
Commission Communication.Enhancing and focusing EU international cooperation in research and innovation: A strategic approach.2012