FP7 Framework Programme_

Foreword

The Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (FP7) is the biggest ever investment made by the EU in assuring its future as a knowledge-based society. It builds on the successes and experience of previous FPs that have grown in ambition over the years. FP7 has a budget of some €50 billion over the seven years from 2007-2013, constituting an annual average investment that is substantially higher than in previous Framework Programmes and that will, by the end of the period rise, to around 10% of the public spending on research by Member States.

This interim evaluation of FP7 has been carried out by an independent Expert Group, appointed by DG RTD in the spring of 2010 in line with article 7(2) of the EC Seventh Framework Programme Decision which provides that: ‘No later than 2010, the Commission shall carry out, with the assistance of independent experts, an evidence-based interim evaluation of this Framework Programme and its specific programmes building upon the ex post evaluation of the Sixth Framework Programme.’1

The Expert Group wishes to express its sincere gratitude to several people, who have contributed to this report. We wish to acknowledge the work of the supporting experts: Professor Costas Fotakis, Professor Annamária Inzelt, Professor Jean-Louis Coatrieux, Dr. Jonathan Adams and Dr. Wolfgang Polt. The Expert Group’s work has been ably assisted by the Commission staff, especially DG RTD A.3 unit Evaluation and Monitoring of Programmes (Dr Peter Fisch, Dr. Neville Reeve, Ms Grainne Freir, Ms Justyna Tisserand, Ms Eszter Batta, Ms Isabelle Dupont, Dr Gerburg Larsen and Mr Georgios Chorafakis), and we have also benefited from the input and co-operation of many other officials responsible for different parts of the Framework Programme.

The evaluation comes at a point when the Framework Programme has reached its mid-point in calendar terms, but when many of the projects funded in its early years are still in progress and when the bulk of the money remains to be allocated. Some of the projects initiated in the latter years of FP7 can be expected to continue for as long as five years after its formal end, that is up to 2017-2018. It follows that only tentative conclusions can be reached about the outcomes of FP7 and the impact it will have on Europe’s science, its economy and its society.

Nevertheless, an interim evaluation has a vital role to play in taking stock, in putting forward proposals for the remaining years of FP7 and in drawing out lessons that can feed into the planning – already in its early stages – of a successor programme.

Stockholm, Brussels, 12 November 2010.
For the Expert Group, Rolf Annerberg

Download the complete FP7 Interim Evaluation (.PDF)

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