NordForsk contributes to the Grand Challenge debate in Europe

Gunnel Gustafsson

NordForsk contributes to the Grand Challenge debate in Europe

- The Nordic example demonstrates that an open and flexible platform for cooperation like NordForsk can facilitate processes which make it possible to go from policy to action rather quickly, says NordForsk Director Gunnel Gustafsson.

At a meeting in 11 April, NordForsk presented its contributions to the Grand Challenges debate in Europe. The meeting was headed by NordForsk Director Gunnel Gustafsson.

The presentation was based on a paper which has been developed with the help of a high level expert group formed during ESOF in Turin in July 2010. The debate at the Brussels meeting started out from the assumption that the global society faces Grand Challenges which are urgent to deal with, the solution of which is a prerequisite for economic growth, renewal of industry and more generally for increased well-being and quality of life in Europe, and that Grand Challenges responding research and innovation can be used to turn huge problems into opportunities and progress.

- Investments in Grand Challenges responding research would make Europe an attractive international partner in research, innovation and education, says Gunnel Gustafsson.

The main focus during the meeting was on lessons learned from Nordic globalization initiatives in terms of processes to accomplish a common pot system with the help of processes which create trust and co-operation across countries, sectors and cultures. It was suggested that the Common Strategic Framework for the EU should support Grand Challenges responding research and innovation because no single country can tackle Grand Challenges on its own, and also because this is a responsible way to respond to contemporary global problems emerging from nature and ways of life.

- I think that Grand Challenges responding research, innovation and education would create incentives for bright young people in Europe to contribute to the solution of problems of our time with the help of knowledge, finalizes Gunnel Gustafsson.

Read more here: A Nordic contribution to the Grand Challenges debate (Executive summary)