European Research, 10 Years On

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Science  11 Jul 2008:
Vol. 321, Issue 5886, pp. 175
DOI: 10.1126/science.1161888

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Next week, Barcelona will host the Euroscience Open Forum, Europe's major interdisciplinary meeting, to discuss the latest trends in science, technology, the humanities, and policy. Euroscience, the founding organization of this meeting, was born more than 10 years ago, at a time when there was much debate on the need for new research structures and the desire to establish a common research "space" across Europe. In 2000, the European Union (EU) launched the European Research Area (ERA), a concept that aims to increase the impact of research efforts by strengthening the coherence of research activities and policies in Europe. In 2007, the EU launched the European Research Council (ERC), the first pan-European funding structure for frontier research in all fields of knowledge. So, is European science better off now than 10 years ago? The answer contains both good news and bad news.