Reforms in the way research is funded and in the extent to which it is linked to technology and innovation in industry provide important tools for putting Greece on a growth path. In this presentation, Prof. Stamatis Krimigis, Chairman of the National Council of Research and Technology (ESET), stresses the need for non-partisan, coordinated effort, for generous growth in funds for research in Greece, and also for a change of attitude towards funding of research projects. All these are crucial if research is to contribute significantly to economic development, utilization of the ample research potential that Greece has, and containment of the massive outflow of the best young Greek researchers prompted by the deep recession and the crisis of Greek institutions.
The eleven-member National Council (ESET) is the top consulting body in Greece dedicated to research issues and to their creative links to technology. The General Secretariat of Research and Technology (GSRT) provides administrative support to ESET, and the latter advises directly the Minister of Education, Continuing Education, and Religious Affairs, as well as the Committee of Ministers on Research-Technology-Innovation to be formed following introduction of the new law on research.
ESET, with the administrative help of GSRT and scientific input from high-level, international thematic councils, has recently completed the first phase of the funding program “Aristeia I” (“Excellence I”) to the tune of 62m Euro, and it has now issued a call of proposals for the second phase (60m Euro) that also includes special provisions for support of young researchers.
The proposals approved for funding in the first stage of the Program, Aristeia I, are expected to contribute to advances in knowledge that are significant by international standards. Funding limitations prevented the funding of all highly promising projects and researchers, at least in the first stage of Aristeia. ESET is looking forward to submission of new innovative proposals in the second stage, but also to the resubmission of improved proposals that could not be funded in the first stage. The call for proposals for Aristeia II is to be found here.
The next key project for future growth, already launched by ESET, is the preparation of a national framework plan for research, technology, and innovation (ESPEK), with 2014 to 2020 as the horizon. After completion of open consultation, ESET is currently in close contact and collaboration with the TES (sectoral scientific councils), aimed at identifying priorities in the sciences, social sciences, and art and humanities to be incorporated in ESPEK.
We publish here a presentation (in Greek) of the work and the philosophy of ESET written by its Chairman, Prof. Stamatis Krimigis. This presentation was made some time ago, in February 2012, to the Hellenic-American Medical Association, and we publish it in order to illustrate the effort in this potentially important area for future growth.
More detailed information on the activities of ESET can be found on its web site.