11 universities sign statement to promote SSH in FP9
Ghent University has issued a "Joint call to EU regarding SSH in FP9" to create more research opportunities for the Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) in the next Framework Programme (FP9), and to reinforce existing mechanisms that enable SSH disciplines to fully participate in Horizon 2020. The statement has been endorsed by eleven European universities up to now, three of them - Ghent University itself as well as the universities of Glasgow and Groningen - members of The Guild of European Research Universities. The statement calls on the European institutions to ensure that researchers from the entire range of SSH disciplines can fully participate in the 9th EU Framework Programme for Research & Innovation (FP9).
The document underlines that we cannot adequately address European and global challenges without strong SSH research, which helps us understand and cope with change, as well as the non-technical and exact aspects of disruption. The statement also notes Europe’s pre-eminence in SSH disciplines worldwide, arguing that Europe needs to invest in the strength of its research base.
The statement therefore stresses the need to to combine a dedicated approach with an embedded approach to SSH, which means strengthening SSH-led interdisciplinary research, as well as encouraging high-quality contributions from SSH to STEMM-led Societal Challenges and/or missions.
The signatories of the statement urge for 5 concrete commitments.
- The creation of an SSH Platform, analogous to ETPs, can consolidate this collaboration and structure the way this community provides input to scoping papers, work programmes, societal challenges and missions. The platform would also facilitate the search for SSH evaluators. The support for multidisciplinary collaborations can be increased, by
- encouraging researchers to think about how to generate academic and societal impact when drafting proposals,
- recognising that all disciplines crucially contribute to the goal of an inclusive and prosperous Europe and
- investing in high-quality SSH research and innovation opportunities.
- A target budget for SSH spending of 10% of the overall civil research budget for FP9 will help in better facilitating the highest-quality SSH activities and consequently activating its full potential to academic and societal impact for the future of Europe.
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