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International research and innovation partnerships to meet global challenges

July 28, 2011



27 and 28 September 2011

Emperor’s Palace, Johannesburg, South Africa

The recent economic crisis has underlined again the need to invest on a knowledge based economy and highlighted the need for global action. Global action is also a necessity for addressing several challenges (environmental, health, societal, etc) that require immediate attention.

Addressing this need of an interconnected world, the European Union has invested in the development of the International Scientific Cooperation (INCO) over the last 25 years to address the needs and opportunities, and to contribute to peace and prosperity for European citizens. The European Commission (EC) has specifically come forward with a communication (A Strategic European Framework for International S&T Cooperation) that identifies general principles and specific orientations for action: to strengthen the international dimension of the European Research Area (ERA); to improve the framework conditions for international S&T cooperation; and to promote European technologies in the world.

In this context, the EU has opened to Third countries the Framework Program (FP), its main central funding instrument for scientific research. The current Framework Program, the 7th Framework Programme (FP7), lasts from 2007 through 2013. To maximise impact, funding for international research activities is spread throughout the various activities of FP7, with limited exceptions, while the INCO program is specially designed to support the participation of third countries in FP7.

The 2011 conference occurs at a time when Horizon 2020 – the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation is under development and offers an opportunity for the role of international co-operation to be considered.

 The theme for the 2011 conference revolves around issues of international research and development co-operation to address global challenges, with particular, but not exclusive, focus on African‑EU Science and Technology co-operation.

The objectives of the INCO Conference 2011 are to:

  • Outline the policy for international S&T co-operation and global challenges,
  • Examine the experiences of S&T partnership initiatives,
  • Discuss International co-operation in the Common Strategic Framework for Research and Innovation.

The first day (27/9) of the conference will be open to stakeholders interested in international scientific cooperation and will include several relevant topics.  ( draft program )

The second day of the conference (28/9) will be open to the INCO NCPs only and will host the annual INCO NCP meeting and an INCO NCP training session. ( draft program )

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