Progress on the European Reform of Research Assessment Initiative
The European Commission initiative to reform research assessment continues to develop at pace. A first public political announcement about the initiative was made as part of the Paris Open Science European Conference 2022 (OSEC2022) on 4 and 5 February.
The President of Science Europe, Marc Schiltz, spoke during a session dedicated to research assessment. The conference was accompanied by the Paris Call on Research Assessment that announced the initiative on paper.
Science Europe, represented by Marc Schiltz, Lidia Borrell-Damián, and James Morris, is a member of the group that is drafting the agreement, together with the European University Association (EUA) and researcher Dr. Karen Stroobants. This work is facilitated by the European Commission DG RTD Open Science Unit.
A ‘core group’ of 20 research stakeholder representatives will review progress and provide input to agreement drafts on a bi-weekly basis. Marc Schiltz acts as Chair of these meetings. Three Science Europe Member Organisations are represented in this group (VR, CSIC, and the DFG). A second meeting of the Core Group took place on 18 February and was used to refine an initial set of ‘commitments’. For more information on the composition of the group, see bit.ly/3sHQQwG.
In addition to the ‘core group’ consultations, several broad stakeholder assemblies are being organised jointly by Science Europe and EUA. These are open to organisations that have expressed an interest in the initiative.
Currently, 260 organisations have done so, including 22 Science Europe Member Organisations. A full list is available.
First Stakeholder Assembly
Science Europe and EUA hosted the inaugural large stakeholder assembly on 3 March. The assembly meeting provided a first opportunity for interested organisations to provide input to the process of drafting an agreement. The meeting was attended by over 200 participants, and lively discussions on the rationale and scope of reform provided valuable material for the further development of an agreement. Eleven breakout groups scrutinised the purpose of a reform, the draft commitments, and the proposed process towards a coalition. The Drafting Team and Core Group will take all the input provided by participants and further shape the draft agreement before the next stakeholder assembly.
The Science Europe Office will regularly consult with all relevant Working Groups on this topic as the initiative progresses, and the Working Group on Research Culture is convening a short, dedicated meeting for this purpose early in March.