The EU should quadruple public spending on science, research, and innovation by 2030

Sun Jun 03 2018 15:00:00 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)


Martin O'Neill

University of York

Senior Lecturer

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CMV: The EU should quadruple public spending on science, research, and innovation by 2030
- The EU budget priorities should be shifted accordingly
- Additionally, the EU should adopt a directive stipulating the minimum % of gdp member states need to spend on science, research, and innovation

* Investing in R&D is the best way of investing in Europe's people
* Europe has fallen behind the US and Asia as a source of research and innovation
* The only way to solve problems of climate change is through technological progress
* Europe needs to find a growth model that involves high tech and high skills, and the market will not provide this on its own
* Too much innovation is driven just by finding better ways of selling things, rather than being focussed on more important social goals
* There is a democratic case for the direction of research and innovation being under our deliberate democratic control
* The achievements of scientific research are also valuable in and of themselves, as a form of human excellence, and worth funding also for these intrinsic reasons
* It will be easier to tackle inequality in a high growth society, and we can only get a high growth society by investing in science, research, innovation, and the people who will push them forward

Background Information

  • According to the EU, investments in research and development aim at establishing “the EU as a leading knowledge-based economy, producing world-class science and innovation to ensure Europe’s global competitiveness” 

    • In 2016, gross domestic expenditure (GERD) within the EU-28 was 40% higher than ten years previous (in 2006). However, the latest annual rates of change in expenditure were the lowest of the decade

    • Public spending on science, research and innovation within the EU is governed by internal research and innovation programmes. The most recent programme named “Horizon 2020” covers the period between 2014 and 2020 and is endowed with a budget of 80 billion Euros

  • Apart from budgetary plans, the EU is working towards intensifying its research and development engagement through various programmes and strategies, including:

    • ​The Research and Innovation Policy

    • European Innovation Council (EIC) pilot

    • European Research Area (ERA)

    • Innovation Union

Read More

EU research and innovation

The state of research and Innovation in Europe

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