Without more research and innovation today - Europe risks being poor in 2030
Today at the European Parliament, Prof. Jerzy Buzek, rapporteur for the forthcoming 7th Framework Programme for Research, together with Dr. Jorgo Chatzimarkakis, rapporteur for the new Competitiveness and Innovation Programme, handed over a “European Petition for Research and Innovation” to the current President of the European Council, Austrian Federal Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel.
The “European Petition for Research and Innovation” , is signed by over 75 high-level personalities from politics, industry and academia. It was triggered by the surprisingly low budget that the European Council of last December proposed for research and innovation activities in the financial perspectives of the European Union (2007-2013). The European Parliament rejected the Member States’ budget proposal as “unacceptably low”.
The signatories of the “European Petition for Research and Innovation” urge the Austrian Presidency and the other 24 EU governments to increase the “competitiveness and innovation” chapter of the EU financial perspectives, in order to align the budget with Europe’s political ambitions expressed through the Lisbon agenda for higher competitiveness, growth and job creation.
Jerzy Buzek stresses that “research and innovation are crucial for Europe’s future and must receive strong and coordinated support both at EU and Member State levels, if they are to result in new ideas and better technologies, and their subsequent exploitation by European companies”, while Jorgo Chatzimarkakis warns that “the EU risks being a poor region by 2030 if it fails to invest more in research and innovation today”.
The initiators of the petition hope to send a strong signal to EU decision-takers in time for the inter-institutional budget negotiations among European Commission, the Parliament and the Member States, in support of the initial budget proposed by the Commission. The “European Petition” is reinforced by an earlier petition, endorsed by over 19,000 researchers , to reiterate the wishes of the scientific community.