On 3 May 2017, the Competitiveness Council on Research held an informal meeting with Ministers Responsible for Competitiveness
The meeting was chaired by Chris Agius, Maltese Parliamentary Secretary for Research, Innovation, Youth and Sports, and was split into two sessions of which the second focused on an exchange of views to tackle the topic of innovation divide.
In the shift towards the implementation of the European Research Area (ERA), one of the aims is converging innovation performance across the whole of the European Union. The “innovation divide” or “gap” is understood to be the difference in research and innovation (R&I) performance between EU countries, as the trend shows two cohorts; those Member States close to the EU average or above, and those lagging.
This exchange of views is meant to serve as a basis for future discussions on the same topic that will influence the mid-term review of the EU’s 8th Framework Programme for R&I (Horizon 2020). The results of the mid-term review are expected to be delivered and discussed at political level during the succeeding Estonian Presidency.
The political views expressed during the Council meeting will most likely also feed into future work in developing the 9th Framework Programme, discussions on which could also feature in the context of the mid-term review of Horizon 2020.