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Posted: August 4, 2007
Portugese nanotechnology priorities
(Nanowerk News) Portugal hopes to stimulate initiatives in three key areas during its stint in the EU's Presidency seat: publishing and scientific information; nanosciences and nanotechnologies; reform and modernisation of universities.
Setting the scene for its Presidency, the Portuguese Government states: 'We know that globally, the European Union has not yet reached the goal of 1% public investment in R&D [research and development], or the 2% of private investment in R&D. The exchange of experiences and mutual learning between national governments is still scarce and the collaboration between governments, R&D institutions and scientific organisations at the European level is still in its initial phase.'
Portugal believes that the launch of the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) for research has provided an opportunity to take a fresh look at EU science policy.
On publishing and scientific and technical information, the Presidency states that it will encourage a debate, focusing in particular on digital scientific libraries, involving all interested stakeholders. The debate will aim to establish mutual trust.
The prioritisation of nanosciences and nanotechnologies coincides with the mid-term review of a Commission strategy in this area, which is being prepared currently. The Presidency will 'highlight this field, stimulating in particular the coordination of national and European efforts and initiatives'.
Universities are one of the most strategic resources for a knowledge-based society and economy, according to Portugal. 'The Presidency will contribute to the process of the modernisation of higher education in Europe, focusing in particular on the opening, diversification and internationalisation of universities, in the context of advanced research and training networks,' state the priorities.
The priorities also note that a meeting of the Scientific Council of the European Research Council (ERC) was, symbolically, the first event to take place during the Portuguese Presidency.