Working together for a better future

The European Research Area (ERA) enhances the competitiveness of the EU with pioneering research and innovation. As the basis for new products and services in Europe, it is instrumental in bringing together knowledge from across the continent. 

The Covid-19 pandemic has brought home the fact that no country can meet the major challenges of our times on its own. Efforts to fight disease, manage the impacts of climate change, and protect natural resources are global concerns. The European Green Deal plans to meet these challenges head on with a sustainable growth strategy that will transform the EU into a modern, resource-efficient, and competitive economy. In this process, digitisation will be a driver of change, as digital technologies can help to support sustainable development in many different sectors, for example in efficiently handling large quantities of data or with innovative ideas for green urban development. Innovative concepts from the world of research will help us to take a step towards a growth strategy for the future.

The advantages of a common research area 

The aim is to make the European Research Area more efficient. This is to be achieved through targeted investment in research into healthcare, digitisation, climate protection, and artificial intelligence (AI), as well as with attractive working conditions for researchers throughout the EU. Scientists and scholars can make use of an outstanding infrastructure and have excellent opportunities to collaborate across borders. EU nations with weaker research capabilities also obtain access to scientific excellence. All this allows us to transform research results into specific new products and services faster than was previously possible. 

Research based on common values, not borders

The ERA draws on a set of common European values, in which innovation and competitiveness are not prioritised at the expense of ethical principles. Artificial intelligence needs to be programmed without prejudice, digitisation enacted with an eye to data privacy. Within the global market, the European way shows that economic and social cohesion is a strong foundation – research and innovation put people at the centre. Alongside our work to fight Covid-19, cancer research is another important field, with personalised medicine as an area of healthcare research proving itself to be helpful in preventing and healing disease. Other areas of research include climate-neutral energy, “smart cities,” and the protection of our seas and oceans. Beyond this, we also need to find ways to counter the loss of trust in science and prevent the spread of disinformation.

Bringing the world’s best talents together

The EU member states work closely together in the fields of research and innovation. This allows Europe to stay competitive, grow its economy, and face major societal challenges, both now and in the future. The European Union is already a major contributor to global knowledge production. Further efforts are, however, still required as global competition for knowledge and innovation becomes increasingly fierce. Seen in this light, Europe offers an efficient common research area that brings together the best talents from all around the world. Our shared objective is to build this network into something even bigger.