“You don’t get harmony when everyone sings the same note”
Over the last three years, the JEUPISTE project helped to further promote cooperation in Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) between Europe and Japan. The EU-funded initiative tackles major issues in these fields through analytical, promotional and supporting actions.
The global landscape is evolving rapidly as an increasing amount of research and innovation is being created and conducted in non-European countries. Strengthening connections with international partners and cooperating for mutual benefit became essential for all players to ensure competitiveness and sustainable development both for Europe and Japan.
JEUPISTE (Japan-EU Partnership in Innovation, Science and Technology) followed the successful footsteps of the J-BILAT project, an initiative running from January 2010 to December 2012, to increase awareness on the 7th European Framework Programme in Japan and address relevant challenges regarding Science, Technology and Innovation.
Based on the achievements of the J-BILAT initiative, the JEUPISTE project put EU-Japan partnership building at the core of its strategy. Without losing sight of the main objective of the initiative, the Consortium – composed of ten partners both from Japan and diverse European countries – acted on multiple fronts and focused on key enabling technologies and similar societal challenges for both the regions. ICT, advanced materials, biotechnology and innovation in SMEs have been selected as key enabling technologies for fruitful collaboration among the EU and Japan. Health, demographic change and well-being, secure, clean and efficient energy, and inclusive, innovative and reflective societies were identified as societal challenges.
An intensive and systemic activity of collection of relevant data, analysis and an accurate monitoring process on EU-Japan STI cooperation with a special attention to the priorities covered under the project, has been carried out to identify relevant areas where cooperation potential between EU and Japan can be further exploited. The project has managed to establish a steady flow of information between the EU and Japan to support stakeholders involved in policy dialogues in defining priorities for the creation and implementation of joint strategic agendas for research, development and innovation. Three major outputs resulted from this activity: an inventory of STI Programmes and Analysis of the EU-Japan Cooperation, providing an overview of the current level of cooperation and ongoing STI programmes between the European Union and Japan; a report assessing the participation of Japanese organizations in the Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development and a study analyzing EU-Japan Co-Publications outputs (more information at this link).
JEUPISTE considerably increased Japan’s access to available tools and resources for cooperation with Europe and vice versa. The project paved the way for a greater participation of the R&D community to EU and Japan’s respective programmes. On the one hand, various opportunities were presented by prominent organizations in the Japanese R&D landscape such as the Japan Science and Technology Agency and the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science counting on their vast collaborative ties with important institutions worldwide: Postdoctoral Fellowships for Overseas Researchers, Invitation Fellowship Programs for Research in Japan or international exchange initiatives offer a fertile ground for cooperation between the regions. On the other hand, opportunities for Japanese participation to Horizon 2020 were showcased by National Contact Points and success stories of Japanese participation to FP7 emphasized the benefits of a closer collaboration between the EU and Japan. Initiatives such as EURAXESS – Researchers in Motion have been presented providing access to relevant information and support services to researchers willing to develop their career in Europe, and topics, deadlines and budgets related to EU-Japan Joint calls in the new Horizon 2020 Work Programme have been outlined (a complete list of the events organized and relevant presentations is available at this link).
Through coordinated networking and twinning actions, the JEUPISTE project facilitated the establishment of public-private partnerships, joint technology initiatives and academia-industry collaboration. The multi-disciplinary topic of “Smart Cities in a broader term” was selected as the focus of three innovation workshops, that were the occasion to further share experiences and brainstorm with high-level representatives both from European and Japanese organisations and lay the foundations for future business collaborations.
A further opportunity for European and Japanese stakeholders is the professional assistance offered by the JEUPISTE help desk, providing advice on a wide range of areas from Japanese research funding programmes that can be used in the context of EU-Japan cooperation to relevant H2020 topics and types of action for cooperation with Japan and recommendations on integrating a Japanese partner in a H2020 research project. In collaboration with the National Contact Point and the Enterprise Europe Network in Japan, the help-desk also facilitates partner search through a dedicated tool aiming at bringing together organisations for the submission of joint project proposals.
Since the launch of the initiative coordinated by the EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation, INSME (Partner of the JEUPISTE Project) offered its active contribution by facilitating partnership building and by disseminating the added-value of EU-Japan collaboration to a multi-stakeholder audience.
By focusing on science, technology and innovation, initiatives such as the JEUPISTE project can contribute to the competitiveness of a country. Supporting policies, increasing the attractiveness of human resources and linking the S&T communities with private sector competences are fundamental steps to take to find a way out of a sluggish economy.
For any further information about the JEUPISTE Project, please click here.